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by Amelia Holzapfel
“There just aren’t any good men in this town.” Pouted my friend Ashley as we waited for our food to arrive. My response? The trick isn’t to find a “good man” but to find one who is real and figure out if you can learn to deal with his imperfections. Ashley needs a real man, I need a real man who only responds to my booty calls, and you?
Here are 12 signs the man you’ve found is a real man. It’s up to you what you do with him after you find him.
1. He’s Observant —
Not only will he see the man wearing a blue shirt in this photo, he’ll notice when you get your hair cut, wear a new outfit, or drop a pound or two. He’ll still notice other women. That’s okay. He notices pretty much everything. We all notice huge boobs, right? Don’t hate. He’s just being real with you.
2. He’s Got Tact —
He knows when to be silent. It’s great to have a man who knows how to say the right thing. That’s not as important as having a man who knows when to be silent and just hold you when you’ve had a shit day. A real man might not be able to woo your parents with thoughtful commentary but the worst they’ll think is that he’s quiet. Being quiet is a far better trait than being stupid. A real man tries not to be stupid when he can help it.
3. He’s Accepting —
If you’ve always wanted to pretend like you were Arielle from The Little Mermaid and have a handsome prince snatch your lithe self from the waves, a real man will play along because he knows it’s something you want. Of course, doing anything naked will make a real man more agreeable. Want to yell at him? Do it naked and he’ll be less likely to resent you for it.
4. He’s Flexible —
A real man might not be able to touch his own toes, let alone bend into a human pretzel. But he will be able to sleep on concrete, wear the same clothes for days, and survive for indefinite periods of time in beer and ramen noodles. Any man who says he couldn’t survive under the same conditions is either lying to appeal to your fair nose or is hiding a sex change. If he’s being real with you, he’ll admit to his, um, flexibility when it comes to lifestyle options. How is this good for you? A real man’s flexibility means he’ll be able to take your ups and downs, curves and flats, and wild ideas in stride. If a real man loves you, he’ll flex to you. That’s huge.
5. He Can Amuse Himself —
A real man doesn’t wait around for you to keep him company and make him laugh. He finds his own stuff to do. You might find everything he does to be entirely amusing or sanitary, but that’s not the point. A real man doesn’t expect you to love everything he does in pursuit of amusement. Goodness, be happy that he doesn’t look to you as his sole source of amusement! Be real with yourself for a moment: You’re probably not that interesting. Want a real man to stick with you? Encourage him to seek his own hobbies and amusements. This doesn’t mean you have to encourage him to belch out the American anthem during dinner out. What it does mean is that you don’t have to constantly worry about impressing or amusing him. He can find his own laughs sometimes.
6. He’s Confident —
He isn’t afraid to admit when he’s wrong or isn’t sure of things. Well, most of the time. If he thinks you’ll mock him or think less of him for not knowing something, he’ll try to gain time so he can figure things out. Remember how I said that a real man tries not to be stupid? That’s a benefit when it comes to avoiding embarrassment but also a downside when you’re trying to figure things out quickly.
Let a real man know you accept him, flaws included, and he’ll be better about admitting to those flaws. You have the power to make your man feel like shit or THE shit. A real man won’t expect you to coddle him but he’ll appreciate it and respond well when you take the time to let him know you think he’s awesome… mostly.
7. He Has A Sense Of Humor —
A real man knows how to take a joke and never takes himself too seriously.
8. He Takes Time For Himself —
A real man knows he needs time for himself to sort through things and just enjoy life. This comes in different forms for different men but suffice it to say that if you don’t let him have time for himself, he’ll go nuts on you. Learn to recognize when he’s built up a lot of mental tension and let him go. It’s not the sort of tension you can fix with a quickie (although that can help). A real man doesn’t need time alone because he hates you. He needs it so that he won’t learn to hate you. Let him have it.
9. He’s Compassionate —
A real man cares about others even if he doesn’t always show it. He might not run around trying to find people to help but if he sees somebody in need, a real man will almost always try to help. When you first start spending time with a real man he’ll often ask if he can do anything to help when you’re having a bad day.
Avoid telling him to leave you alone even if that’s what you really want. Doing so will make him feel like you don’t want his help. That’s a crusher. Give him something to do and smile when he does it. He’ll keep trying and trying and trying to make you happy. Real men are handy like that.
10. He’s True To His Word —
He’ll do everything in his power to keep his promises. Even if that means doing something idiotic like eating 50 eggs.
11. He’s Brave —
A real man isn’t afraid to try new things, take calculated risks, or jump headlong into crazy ideas. If he was, chances are he wouldn’t try a relationship with you. (Or me, I’ll admit to a bit of the crazy bug.) The only thing most real men are afraid of is losing the respect of the women they love. That might sound cheesy but I’ve seen enough men break down when I got bored of them to know it’s true.
12. He’s Patient —
A real man won’t try to force you to be with him. He’ll try to impress you and convince you that he’s worth your time, but he won’t force you to do anything. If you find a real man you won’t have to worry about unwanted groping, date rape, or worse. He’ll take the time to get to know you and take things at a speed you’re comfortable with.
A real man will wait for you to open your arms to him. If you find one, you’d best open them quickly before some smarter women comes along to claim him for herself. Don’t hate. As you’re well aware, it’s hard to find a real man these days.
Have you found a real man? Perhaps you have some traits of a real man to add from your personal experience? Let me know!
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