After talking with literally hundreds of women about their men, I've noticed a pattern when it comes to relationship-ready guys. There are three types of men who enter relationships, and they present themselves in unique ways, which can be frustrating for you. I've seen these types among my friends, and they frustrate me too. When you understand what motivates these guys, you'll see that you need to treat each type a little bit differently. When you know what makes these guys tick and how to work with them, life will become easier!
1. The All-In Guy:
This guy is usually smitten from the start, and he feels a strong connection. Because he comes to the table already commitment-ready, this relationship usually flows easily and effortlessly if the woman is equally into him. There's no need to guess with this guy, because he shows up fully committed each and every day. An example is the guy who is respectful of your boundaries, doesn't push sex too soon, and makes you his girlfriend without you feeling anxious or needy for commitment. You know right away that this guy is into you. The boyfriend of one of my clients asked her to be his girlfriend after 3 weeks of dating, told her he loved her after a couple of months, and invited her to move in after 8 months. She told me he never pulled away, or if he did, she couldn't tell.
The All-In Guy may be the man who's never been married and knew right away she was the one, or he might be the man who's been divorced for a few years and has made peace with his past. He knows you're the one he wants to be with and there are no games and no drama. He makes his intentions clear, and you have no doubts. You don't need to do much except be the happy you he wants to be with. Don't feel anxious because there's no need to be. He sees the amazing, wonderful, beautiful you and wants that in his life. Just keep on doing you, and don't change.
2. The Maybe Guy:
The Maybe Guy is smitten and cares for his lady, and yet he also has some doubts or unresolved issues that keep him from being all in. The maybe guy usually needs time before he fully commits, and often he does so because it's important to his partner and her need for security. He chooses commitment because he wants to make her happy (and the payoff is that he's happy too).
One example of this guy is the one who's there 90% of the time and then pulls away the other 10%. He has to pull away to process his feelings and his thoughts, but he always comes back a little stronger than he was when he left. You feel his love, but you feel his fear too. Often, this is the guy who's been burned by his exes and hasn't had enough time to process his feelings and his part in the relationships and breakups. To help this guy, just let him be. Time is your friend here. Let him know you are not going to push him into anything, and allow him the time he needs to be fully present and committed. When he pulls away, give him a kiss and a sandwich and let him go. Do your own thing, because you know he'll be back.
3. The Needs Proof Guy:
The Needs Proof guy is smitten and cares for his lady, but he often takes her for granted. He gives just enough to keep the relationship going, and most likely, he prefers to cruise along. This guy usually needs to experience loss before he fully commits because seeing the contrast (life without her) makes him appreciate what he truly had. Once he's had his proof, he makes every attempt to demonstrate he's commitment ready (if she takes him back). For example, this guy might flake out on you to hang with his buddies, or he might coast along and do his own thing because he knows you'll be there. He's confident that he has you right where he wants you and that you're not going anywhere.
I don't care for the old saying "Why buy the cow if the milk is free?" But on some level, that is how this guy operates. He's not going to do any more than he has to. This is the man you end up living with for five, seven, or even ten years without marriage. He has no compelling reason to marry you. Perhaps you need to give him one. As I said, this guy needs to experience loss before he moves forward with you. So let him experience it. Don't always be home when he gets there. Go visit relatives for a while if you can. Work a later shift so you're not home every night. Let him miss you. Yes, this can be risky, but think about it — he's not moving forward now, and this may be the push he needs to take your relationship to the next level. There is a chance you could lose him, but if that happens, he had one foot out the door anyway, and wouldn't you rather know now than later?
For most women, the last two men are the most confusing because often there's a push-pull, and most women believe these men are not capable of commitment so they ditch them prematurely. (Please keep in mind there are additional men who are not relationship ready, and they are not addressed here.) Don't give up on them too soon — often when you're ready to throw in the towel, they're just about ready to commit. And once they do, they'll be in for the long haul. I'm not saying you need to allow these guys the usual 5 years that many women do, but if you follow what I outlined above, that time will shorten dramatically.
More about commitment on YourTango: