Watch Out For These 10 Types Of Guys—They’ll Only Waste Your Time

In the pursuit of love, it’s sometimes damn hard to distinguish the good guys from the bad boys. Throw attraction in the mix and you’re really screwed. It’s cool to experiment, learn your lessons, and discover what makes you happiest. However, if you’ve been trying to get something real started with a guy who falls into any of these categories, it might be time to reconsider.

  1. He’s way too busy for a relationship. You easily jettison the guy who’ll take Saturday night video games over a romantic evening with you but it’s tougher to give a dude up when you find him completely intriguing. Whether he’s a restaurateur revolutionizing sustainable sushi or a mountaineer bent on breaking records, you’ve got mad respect for his efforts. You hope that one day he’ll give you the same level of focus he reserves for the things he loves most, especially when he sees how chill and supportive you are. Problem is, you’re no contest for his all-consuming interests. If you really need an ambitious quester in your life, be one yourself. You’ll naturally attract men who share your passions, rather than waiting hopefully in the background.
  2. He’s on the rebound. Unless your goal is to enjoy a one-night stand (and if so, go for it), a man still recovering from heartbreak just can’t give you the care and attention you deserve. Maybe you’re hoping he’ll love you in the future, once he’s healed. Still, why defer your own satisfaction while waiting for him to get back on track? If the timing is right for you both one day, you still might get your happy ending. In the meantime, please move on to more promising prospects.
  3. He’s fun but unstable. There are always sparks when he’s around. Hell, there are full-blown wildfires. You can’t anticipate his next move and you love it. He’s pure sensory overload. He makes you feel more alive than you ever thought possible… until the next morning when he leaves you with an emotional hangover that makes you wish you’d never been born. Great for the occasional adrenaline rush, but once you’re ready to move in a more long-term direction, he’s not a serious option.
  4. He makes you his whole world. Maybe it’s flattering at first to be a guy’s everything. Give it time, though, and you’ll realize it’s actually suffocating. A man who needs constantly to fill himself with others might lack substance. Worse, he might be a controlling jerk. Whichever, the over-the-top adoration leaves you resentful, seeking escape. Then, when you get ready to disengage, he uses manipulation to make you stick around. Be gentle but firm when extracting yourself from his glue-trap embrace.
  5. He can’t make up his mind. Forget about a guy who can’t figure out how he feels about you. If he likes you, he should know that from the beginning and be prepared to act on it. Indecision isn’t attractive—it’s a recipe for disaster. Exit stage left while you still have your sanity and your heart intact.
  6. He’s a selfish lover. Does he treat you more like a masturbatory aid than like an equal partner? Are you constantly seeking to impress him but feeling unfulfilled? Are you more worried about his commentary on your performance than about your own satisfaction? Ditch him now.
  7. He expects you to “prove” that not all women are evil. He’s a self-proclaimed “hopeless romantic” damaged by his own naive goodness. He’s mythologized his love life to cast himself as the victim of women’s “crazy” behavior. Maybe you think he’s a challenge and want to make him reevaluate his views, but his mistrust of women is a chronic condition. In most cases, it’s justification for his own crappy behavior. Every time he “can’t commit right now,” he reminds you how much he’s been disappointed in the past. He attempts to claim victim status while treating you like dirt. Anyone who is remotely skeptical of women’s value and individuality needs to be escorted from your life, pronto.
  8. He’s impenetrable. You’re not the chick who’s destined to crack the code. Either this guy is masking a pure absence of depth or he truly is unfathomable. No matter what, he’s not good for you.
  9. He can’t ignite your passion. Fireworks aren’t the end-all-be-all of great relationships, but if you never experience even the slightest sparkle of excitement, you need to move on—not only for your sake but for his. After all, the things that leave a gal flushed with arousal vary from woman to woman. Don’t hang on for fear that you’re his only option (or that he’s yours). Your sticking around only delays his chance to find the woman who does light up in his presence–and your own opportunity to experience something real.
  10. He’s a player. It’s a tricky balance because, for some of us, these Casanovas will always rank among our favorites. We continue to Facebook stalk them, marveling at their godlike physiques long after we’ve erased their numbers from our phones. But it’s important not to let a fantasy overshadow the fact that eventually, you might like to settle down in a solid partnership. Go ahead and high-five yourself in the mirror for scoring so many hot partners, but once you’re ready for a more lasting relationship, leave these guys where they belong: in your past.
  11. You want to improve him. When the gent in your life feels like a fixer-upper from the outset, step away. Whether his quirks are simply incompatible with yours or he has some legit problems to work through, you can’t expect to shine that mess up with a coat of paint. If your primary motivation in a relationship is to make him a better man, it’s time to straighten out your priorities. Save your projects for Pinterest.
Jackie Dever is a freelance writer and editor in Southern California. When she's not working, she enjoys hiking, reading, and sampling craft beers.