21 Things To Look For In A Boyfriend
1. Regardless of his height, he is comfortable with the way he looks around you. You don’t have to date a guy who is taller than most, but he can’t be someone who is threatened to be seen with you.
2. He genuinely makes you laugh (because he is funny, not because you think he is attractive and want to flatter him), and not a self-conscious little giggle, either. He makes you belly laugh and choke on your own laughter and tear up with laughter and laugh so hard you think you’re going to pee yourself.
3. He loves your laugh, even your “ugly” laugh.
4. He remembers little things about you, even things that other people might consider unimportant or too minor. He knows what your favorite dish at the Thai place is. He knows what movie you two watched on your first date. He knows the blanket you love to curl up with when you’re reading.
5. Whether or not he has the same taste in music or movies as you, he is always willing to try something new that you really like, or that neither of you have seen before.
6. He doesn’t put you down for liking what you like.
7. You always feel welcome around his friends, even if they aren’t the people that you would hang out with every day, and they are always friendly and open to you. There is never a point at which you feel like there is “your boyfriend” and then “the person he is around his friends.”
8. His family is not perfect, because no one is, but they try their best and are good people and you feel comfortable around them.
9. He does not cheat on you, would never cheat on you, and doesn’t even give the vague, nagging suspicion that he might cheat on you at some point in the future. Regardless of the problems you may encounter, being betrayed like is simply not a possibility.
10. His vision of the future is very similar to yours, or at least is flexible enough to adjust to what you both may end up wanting. (Wasting time with someone who does not want what you want, and never will, is unfair to both of you.)
11. He has a healthy relationship with going out, drinking, and socializing. He is neither completely dependent or absolutely uncomfortable with either of those things.
12. With him you are comfortable both going out together and spending time separately with your individual groups of friends — there is no need to be constantly joined at the hip, for fear that he may stray or any other reason.
13. He is willing to consider long-distance if it has to be done for a certain period of time, but at least ultimately has plans to be near you (because no matter how good it is, long-distance can’t last forever).
14. He doesn’t have hang-ups or judgments about your body, and shows all of it affection and attention. You don’t feel ugly or uncomfortable around him, nor that you are not good enough for him physically.
15. He has similar religious views to you — or lack thereof — or is willing to accept that you’re both different. Few things manifest in more ugly ways than the small seeds of disagreement over fundamental beliefs like religion.
16. He is open-minded, and not just about things that he doesn’t really care about. Even for more important subjects like politics or culture, he is able to listen to others and give meaningful responses without being petty or childish.
17. He is mature and comfortable about the human body and all of its weird functions, and doesn’t make a big deal out of things that happen naturally. Instead of feeling uncomfortable when something weird happens during sex, for example, you both just laugh.
18. He doesn’t make fun of you if you say you are offended or upset by something he says. He is actually capable of thinking about the consequences of his words and understanding that not all hurt is inflicted physically.
19. He votes, and understands why it’s important.
20. He is attractive (to your own individual standard), but the vast majority of your interest in him stems from things other than what he looks like.
21. He respects himself enough to want all of these things from you, too.
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Even as I write this now I am debating whether or not to erase it all together.
When I say I’m in love with you, I mean I love the story I can tell to my next lover, about my ex-lover, about how beautiful things were, how intense, how storybook, what a couple we were, and how you gradually, inexplicably, painfully, bit by bit, disappeared.
“I used to be afraid of failing at something that really mattered to me, but now I’m more afraid of succeeding at things that don’t matter.”
I was 24 and, while not gay, ever since college I had been getting more attention from gay men than from heterosexual women.