Communication is the key to any strong relationship—it’s how we let others know how much they mean to us. Since we all communicate our love differently, it’s important to keep a loose grip on the definition of communication itself. However, here’s one thing you should always consider: If a man truly loves you, you should know it and feel it. You shouldn’t be left wondering all the time.
Here are 10 other things the right man will never make you wonder about.
1. Whether or not he respects you.
Love is a product of respect. We cannot love someone we don’t have respect for—respect for their opinions, respect for their feelings, and respect for their wants and needs.
A man who loves and cares for you will always consider you when making decisions that affect you both. He will ask for your opinions. He will treat you as an extension of himself, because that’s what you are in a relationship.
2. Whether or not he thinks you’re beautiful.
Finding someone beautiful is not just about physical attraction. The truth is that when you love someone for who they truly are, everything about them becomes beautiful. No man should let the woman in his life wonder if he is attracted to her—well-placed compliments and paying attention to small details can do wonders.
3. Whether or not he appreciates you.
There should absolutely shouldn’t be a time where you feel unappreciated by your partner. It’s understandable for life to get crazy and stressful, and during these times we can lose sight of someone else’s feelings if we’re caught up in our own hectic day-to-day routine… But this is why it’s so important to put time and effort into a relationship.
No matter how busy or stressed out a man is, when he comes home to you at night, it’s important that he puts in the conscious effort to make sure you know he appreciates everything you do for him. If he doesn’t, talk to him about it. Let him know how you feel, and see how he reacts.
4. Whether or not you’re worth the effort.
You are worth every single ounce of effort a man has to give to you and your relationship. The right man will never make you question that.
5. Whether or not he envisions a future with you.
When a man is serious about you, he will have no problem making plans together for the future. Whether it’s an upcoming holiday or a vacation next summer, his willingness to use “we” when talking about the future, is a clear sign that when he pictures a more mature version of himself, he is also picturing you there by his side.
6. Whether or not he supports you.
When a man commits his love and his time to a woman, there are no stipulations or circumstances required. There will be good times and there will be not-so-good times. There will be challenges and unexpected situations that arise. But he will stay by your side and be your teammate through it all.
Of course, there is an asterisk on this. This doesn’t mean you can disrespect him, lie, or cheat. It doesn’t mean you can betray his trust and expect him to stick around because he promised to commit to you. This point is about things the two of you go through together and him having the integrity needed to not walk away when times get hard.
Any man can be by your side on the sunny days. The real test of character is whether or not he will hold the umbrella over you during the stormy days.
7. Whether or not you can open up to him.
Comfort in a relationship (the good kind, not the kind that makes you stop trying) comes from the ability to be open and honest with your partner, and the ability to do this comes from knowing you will never be judged. A good man will encourage you to open up and share your feelings with him. There should never be any fear of him flying off the handle or overreacting if you share something with him.
This means being able to be the most genuine, uncensored version of yourself around him.
8. Whether or not he is dedicated to improving himself.
Whether it be learning new things, developing a new skill set, reading a new book or watching a documentary, a good man who prides himself on continuous self-improvement will always be intellectually challenging for you and able to keep your attention. He will do these things for himself, but the added benefit will be the positive impact it has on your relationship.
9. Whether or not you are safe around him.
I have always said that I believe one of the best compliments a woman can give a man is telling him that she feels safe around him. Regardless of how attracted she is to you or how funny she thinks you are or how much money you have, if a woman cannot sleep soundly by your side at night, none of it matters.
10. Whether or not he is committed to loving you.
Love is not a passive emotion. It is not just something that bursts into our hearts like fireworks only to dissipate as quickly as it arrived. Love is a choice. It is a conscious effort to look past differences, to embrace how your partner can improve you, to embrace what they can teach you about life, and what you can teach to them in return. Love is not something you ‘fall’ into, it is something you rise into. It is something you rise into together, converging and combining your paths when you meet, and continuing on one single road of life together from that point on.
That road will have speedbumps, and potholes, and unexpected obstacles. It may not be the road you envisioned yourself going down, but you can take solace in the fact that it is the only road you would ever want to be on, because the person you love is on it next to you.
The right man will never make you worry that he might take the next exit and leave you traveling alone—because he has committed to making the choice to love you. Every day.
James M. Sama is spearheading the “New Chivalry Movement,” a set of ideas that prompts the development of self-worth in people of all ages. You can find more of his articles on JamesMSama.com.