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My mother always told me to watch how a man treats the women in his family; particularly the ones in his core clan, but especially his mom. She said this is a key factor in determining how he will behave in a relationship with me. And boy, was she right! Now don’t get me wrong, there are exceptions to this rule, but for the most part, how a guy handles his lady is a reflection of the type of bond he has with his mother.

Males who grow up with very nurturing mothers tend to be more sensitive and attentive in romantic relationships. These men adore their moms because they were raised by queens who instilled in them core values like discipline and deference, and showed them how to value a woman early on. They have a great respect for women overall. Sounds good, right? But also be careful when getting involved with these types of men, as the ones who are extremely close with mom dukes are often momma’s boys. So if his old lady is the super-lonely type, she may interfere in your relationship out of fear of losing her son to you. Beware girl!

On the other hand, men who aren’t as connected with the women who birthed them are a little more complicated. There are three types. Type one includes the ones who love and value their mothers, but just aren’t that close with them. These brothas will show you respect, but are typically not as affectionate as men who are practically still attached to their moms like the umbilical cord was never cut. They might be standoffish at times or struggle with showing you love the way you want them to, but with time, it’s nothing a little TLC can’t iron out.

Then there are the other two. These are the men you really need to be wary of. They should walk around with big signs that read: CAUTION! Yes, the men who have strained relationships with their mother’s and the ones who lack respect for their mommas.

Guys who have no relationship with their mother’s at all, or who have gone periods in their life with no mom around—for whatever reason—are the most fearful of commitment. So they do what? Hop from bed to bed. Let me clear this up a little: I think it’s a well-known fact that many men cheat (come on, let’s be real), but these guys are the worst! They have abandonment issues, so they jump from woman to woman like the Super Mario Brothers hopped around on gold blocks. Just look at Stevie J from Love & Hip Hop Atlanta—he’s a perfect example. And if they’re not jumping from woman to woman, they find ways to push you away before things get too serious. Not to say that all men who are disconnected from their mothers are like this, but the ones I know and have experienced while dating definitely confirm this.

Now this last one, boy is he a trip! He has no respect whatsoever for the females in his fam. He’s quick to dog them, cuss them out, and call them every dirty, down-right filthy slur in the book. Yes, even his mom! I know quite a few of these, and trust me, honey, they have no remorse. Don’t be the dumb girl who’s oblivious to his foolishness, thinking that he won’t handle you in the same manner, ‘cause he will. Always remember ladies: The mother is her child’s first teacher, and learning starts at home. So the next time you spark something up with a new man, keep your eye on his interactions with the ladies in his life; it’s the blueprint for whatever it is you’re trying to build with this guy.

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