1. You don’t actually know if you are “dating” him. A boy is afraid to ask a woman to be official in case she rejects him or afraid to tell her he’d rather hook up than date in case she decides to leave. A man just does what he wants to and is open about it.
2. Sometimes you feel like his mom. If his apartment looks like a dorm room or he doesn’t know how to do his laundry or he only eats fast food or you have to remind him to call his mother on his birthday — run. Things will not improve with time, he will always be a boy and he is looking for a mom, not a girlfriend.
3. When in an argument, he uses phrases like “you always” and “you never.” This is a sign someone isn’t on your team — or even on the team of trying to work towards a resolution. This is the language someone uses when they are emotional and hurt and trying to feel better by putting you down.
4. He can’t be trusted to make good decisions about birth control. If he begs you not to use condoms or avoids the topic altogether there should be a you-shaped hole in the doorway as you run out of it.
5. He gets angry and upset when you ask about his future. Not only does he not have goal or not know what he’s doing — he’s so emotional about it that he can’t even have a conversation with another person about it.
6. He is vague. This should be a huge red flag. No one who is serious about another person has any reason to give vague answers to them or not explain something fully. There’s just no incentive to hide stuff. If a guy offers up weird phrases and shrugs instead of talking like a normal human being, he’s not a grown man.
7. He dates “bad girls.” You know the guy, he seems to have his shit together but he has The Worst taste in women — and he’s always complaining about it. The girls he dates are shady, cheat on him, throw emotional fits in public, or don’t “let” him do completely normal things. He may even have a string of baby mamas that he has to deal with. Take his bad taste for what it is and get out of there, if this is what he’s looking for, it’s not you.
8. His bad habits go unchecked. A man cares about self-improvement, a boy cares about what makes him happy in the moment. This doesn’t mean a man is perfect while a boy is imperfect, it just means that when you grow up you learn to accept your faults while also working to improve them all the time. Everyone’s imperfect, but not everyone is happy to stay that way.
9. He’s needlessly jealous. It’s okay to be jealous once in awhile if something real happens, like a random guy starts pursuing you. But if your boyfriend is jealous of everyone you pass on the street, or longtime friends/coworkers, he’s not an adult. Especially if he starts making rules about who you can and can’t see (or what you can wear) based on what makes him feel “comfortable.”
10. He plays one-upmanship games. If you get the feeling your guy is responding to your text slowly because you were at the gym for a few hours and didn’t respond to his right away — it’s something to consider. Do you want someone who feels they have to play games with you in order to have the relationship go their way or feel good about themselves? This isn’t something to judge a singular instance for, but in a relationship you get the overall feeling someone is being forthright with you or that someone is playing games. One is admirable and one is something to stay away from.