Invaluable Lessons About Men I Learned From My Male Friends
In recent years, I’ve managed to accumulate more male friends than female friends and I noticed another change taking place alongside this change: my dating life and relationships were getting better. Why? Because the plethora of men in my life were teaching me—either through their actions, which I observed regularly, or through their direct advice to me—a lot of valuable lessons about the male species. I became not only better at luring in the men I wanted, but weeding out the ones that, in the past, would have wasted my time. Here are the top gems of knowledge my guy friends have given me.
Men love female attention
Men are huge flirts—even more so than women. If your boyfriend is out without you, you can almost guarantee he is leading other women on. But, that doesn’t mean he is cheating, or saying anything inappropriate, or even giving out his phone number. It just means he’s being friendly and neglecting to mention he’s taken. Guys get off on this ego boost, and it doesn’t make them bad.
Partying is how they deal
If you and your guy get into a fight, or even break up, and you notice an absurd amount of photos of him taking shots on Facebook, this doesn’t mean he has already forgotten his tiff with you. Men simply blow off steam this way. But my guy friends have let me be privy to a little secret: after the bar, when everybody’s eating drunk food, the distressed guy starts to open up about what’s really on his mind.
They’re not all clueless to your needs
Never give a boyfriend a get out of jail free card if he lets you down on your most basic needs, like being listened to, receiving affection, or feeling supported. Do your guy friends listen to you? Are they affectionate with you? Do they support you? Yeah? Well then that’s proof men are capable of that. If you’re not getting that from your boyfriend, you’re just dating the wrong guy.
They can handle the truth
I can’t count the number of times I’ve retold a fight with my boyfriend to a male friend and said, “And then I wanted to say x, y, and z…” and my friend came back at me with, “Well…why didn’t you just say that??” Men can handle the truth with no sugar on top. They don’t need you to put things softly like you would with your female friends. And they often wish you’d just say what’s bothering you so they have a shot at fixing it.
Men can separate their hearts from their beds
If you’re getting to know a guy and catch wind that he’s sleeping with three other women, this doesn’t mean he doesn’t care about you or want to see where things can go with you. If your gut tells you he is developing feelings for you, you’re probably right. But he’s not going to burn the bridges to consistent sex elsewhere until he’s sure things are getting serious with you.
Men won’t change for you
Men do change, but rarely within a relationship. My male friends constantly tell me not to wait around for a man to implement changes that I’m hoping for. A relationship is in a way a place where our personal development freezes. If a guy roped you in while he was a certain way, he feels he can stay that way. If you’re not happy with how a guy is right now, let him go and maybe touch base in a few years when he’s done some personal work.
Men will be lazy if you let them
My male friends are adamant about this point: guys will push you as far as you let them. If a man knows you’ll do his dishes if he leaves them out for a week, he will continue to leave them there. If a man knows you won’t complain if he never accompanies you to meet your family, he won’t ever go. In other words: men need you to put your foot down. They want it and respect it. And it’s often the only way you’ll get what you want.
They can’t guess your needs, but they do care about them
Ask a guy, “Do you want to take out the trash?” and he’ll say, “Not really.” Tell a guy, “I need you to take out the trash” and he’ll say, “Okay.” Men don’t constantly try to trick one another to gauge how much they care about each other. They just tell each other what it is they want, and the other tries to oblige if he can. Try to carry on this type of communication with your guy. If he knows you need something, he’ll do it if he cares about you. It doesn’t matter if he wants to or not, so stop trying to figure that part out. All you need to know is that he’ll meet your needs when you communicate them.
Once a cheater, always a cheater
How is it that a woman can have ten good male friends who’ve never cheated on a girlfriend, and yet she believes cheating is a way of life and forgives it in her partners? Again: look to your male friends as examples of what is possible behavior in a boyfriend. If your male buddies can refrain from cheating, so can a boyfriend.
Your male friends are great at detecting, almost instantly, if a guy you’re dating will be jealous, paranoid or controlling. They pick up on every little facial expression, body language and word that indicates jealous tendencies. Listen to them when they warn you jealousy is ahead.
Men can read other men in a way you just can’t, just how you can read other women in a way your male friends can’t. While a guy might be able to fool you into thinking he is one way, other guys can pick up on BS immediately. Guys can always tell when another guy isn’t comfortable in his own skin or is being fake.
You are fun
The simple fact that you have male friends who love to hang around you proves that you are fun and can roll with the boys. So don’t accept a boyfriend who never invites you to hang out with his friends, or who won’t just take you along to a sports game. The whole, “Well, I’m the girlfriend…” excuse doesn’t fly. Your male friends are testament to the fact you’re a fun chick, and your boyfriend should think so too.
Men do enjoy sex more when it’s emotional
Don’t buy into the myth that men are just into sex for the carnal part of it all. All of my male friends have admitted that sex with women they cared for is much better than sex with most one-night stands or casual flings.
Men are very into rebounding
Odds are if you break up with your guy, he will be doing anything from taking another woman to dinner, to sleeping with another woman, within a month. But, know this: this does not mean he’s over you. He probably still thinks about you constantly. But like partying, this is a way men blow off steam.