For some reason, many of my female friends have consulted me, asking for advice about their relationship. In some cases, the guy they’re dating is a stand-up person, and I urge her to continue seeing him. In other cases, he’s not. So, in order to sort out the ambiguities and lessen the confusion, I’ve created a list of the top signs that you may be dating a loser. If a guy meets two or more of these criteria, watch out, because he is approaching A-list loserdom.
5. He is into his car more than he is into you (or sports, or beer).
Okay, so there is nothing wrong with these activities per se - but when they become obsessions, there might be a problem. When I see grown men decked out with their favorite sports team’s colors, logos or other insignia, I can’t help but think there is something mildly pathetic about it. (See below on clothes.) I’m not alone. Journalist H.L. Mencken, who was in his writing prime in the 1920s through the 50s, called football “the combat of gorillas.” If he cares more about sports on Sunday afternoon than spending some quality time with his girl, ditch him.
4. He refers to his male friends as “Bro.”
Language and communication are important, both in the context of relationships and among friends. If his other guy friends are referred to as “Bro,” dump him, and do it decidedly. Another marked word is “Son,” used as slang to refer to another, apparently lower-status male. If he uses these terms rarely or at all, it might be time to set up a Match.com profile.
3. He dresses like a douchebag.
Don’t let anyone tell you differently: clothes do make the man. Sophisticated clothes are the mark of a sophisticated mind (and personality). Rather than busting out a titled baseball cap or Ed Hardy graphic t-shirt, as do most d-bags, try something different: skinny jeans, faux glasses … something. Personal style is more than the clothes; it’s about the person wearing them, their beliefs and who they are. If a guy dresses like a d-bag, chances are, without second guessing, he’s probably a d-bag.
2. He has an attitude problem.
Unlike the more external signs or behavioral signs that you might be dating a loser, number two is more abstract. The tough guy, I’m-better-than-everyone-else attitude is the true existential mark of a loser. He may be hot, but if his attitude sucks, in the long-term, it’s not going to work. These types of guys usually practice conservative politics and love Ronald Reagan. Watch out. They’ll drag you down, too.
1. He cheated on you … and you took him back.
On/off relationships are interesting, and they are something I’ve covered in other columns. That said, however, once a relationship falls into the “off” category, keep it there. Although purely anecdotal, I’ve heard many stories where the guy has cheated and— for whatever reason (insecurity, fear of being alone, etc.) —she takes him back. Cheating is the ultimate sign of being a loser. Again, if he cheats, send him his walking papers—for good!