When Hes A Keeper

Women's Dating

How Do You Know When He’s A Keeper?

Lauren Sanders

Written by: Lauren Sanders

Lauren Sanders

Lauren is a professional matchmaker, dating expert, certified life/dating coach, multi-published self-help author, and founder of The Love Crush Agency™. She has 15+ years of experience as a therapist and a professional background working with the nation’s largest matchmaking agency.

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Edited by: Lillian Castro

Lillian Castro

Lillian Guevara-Castro brings more than 30 years of journalism experience to ensure DatingAdvice articles have been edited for overall clarity, accuracy, and reader engagement. She has worked at The Atlanta Journal and Constitution, The Gwinnett Daily News, and The Gainesville Sun covering lifestyle topics.

Reviewed by: Amber Brooks

Amber Brooks

Amber Brooks is a dating and relationship expert who has penned over 1,800 lifestyle articles in the last decade, and she still never tires of interviewing dating professionals and featuring actionable advice for singles. She has been quoted by the Washington Times, Cosmopolitan, The New York Post, and AskMen.

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How do you know if a man is a keeper? What are the hallmarks of a healthy relationship? Many women wonder what qualities a man should exhibit if he’s marriage material. We’re here to shed some light on that topic.

Here are some undeniable must-haves for the ideal mate.

1. He Treats You Well

The most obvious sign that the man you’re dating is a keeper is if he treats you well. Is he consistently kind? Is he dependable when you need him? Is he trustworthy? Is he concerned about your daily life? Is he aware of how his actions affect you? These are just a few of the questions to ask yourself when determining whether or not a man is a keeper.

2. He’s Selfless

Think about how giving he is. A selfless man is worth holding onto in a relationship. When looking for long-term mates, it is wise to observe whether they are capable of considering others. How capable are they of putting you first? Are your needs important to him? Does he only do things for you when it’s convenient for him? Or is he willing to do things for you even when it’s inconvenient? 

Photo of couple cooking
A keeper will gladly share his time and space with you.

Sharing involves more than just physical things. Does he share his thoughts with you? Does he share his heart with you? If the answer is yes to any of those questions, that’s how you’ll know when he’s a keeper.

3. He’s Honest About His Intentions

A man who is ready to fully commit to you will ensure you are aware of it. He will tell you his intentions. If he wants to be in a long-term relationship, you will not have to wonder. In fact, he won’t want you to wonder how he feels. He will want you to know how serious he is about being with you. He won’t play with your emotions, and he won’t mislead you. 

If you find yourself wondering whether he wants to be with you or are confused about his motives, more than likely he’s not someone with whom you’ll want to involve yourself.

To be in a long-term relationship, you need a man who exudes qualities of a good life mate. Pay attention to his words and actions. More specifically, ensure his words align with his actions. Oftentimes, men will say nice things to the women they date, but their actions do not align. 

All in all, if you are dating a man who makes his intentions known upfront, he’s definitely a keeper.

4. He Follows Through

Never underestimate a man of his word. A man who keeps his promises is a man worth keeping. Anybody can make promises and say they’ll do certain things, however it’s what occurs after that verbal promise that counts the most. Do his actions line up with the words that come out of his mouth? Or does he make promises, but then fail to keep them? 

If you are dating a man who follows through with everything he says, he’s definitely a keeper. 

In long-term committed relationships, it’s important for both partners to be dependable. A healthy relationship is made up of two individuals who are capable of being reliable. What good does it do you to be in a relationship with a person who is unreliable? 

If you are yoked with a person who is dependable, reliable, and never leaves you hanging, you should cling to that person. In a healthy way, of course.

5. He Listens

A good listener will always be a great quality in a mate. A man is a keeper when he is willing to listen to you without making you feel judged or discounted. Your special person should never make you feel as if you are bothering him by talking.

Therefore, if you are dating a man who actively listens to you and actually cares about the words you speak, that’s a sure sign he’ll be there for you when you need him. 

Many people hear but fail to actively listen. Active listening involves truly absorbing the words a person speaks to you. Active listening isn’t listening just to respond. Some people listen while they simultaneously prepare for their response. So, if you find a man who is willing to listen to you pour out your heart to him, he’s one you’ll definitely want to keep around.

6. He Cares When You’re Hurting

A man who truly cares for you will always be concerned when you are hurting. Whether he’s caused the pain or not, he will always show concern. Never involve yourself with a man who doesn’t care when you are hurting physically, mentally, or emotionally.

Photo of a man listening
A good man will listen and empathize when you’re upset.

If the man you are involved with displays little to no empathy regarding your emotions and how you feel, that’s an immediate red flag. Exit stage left. However, if he is a man who shows valid concern for your feelings, the way he makes you feel, and your emotional well-being overall, he’s a keeper.

The person you decide to spend the rest of your life with should always be mindful of your mental and emotional state. While they are not responsible for your feelings, they most certainly should be aware of them. They should never disregard how you feel.

7. He Doesn’t Play Games

Playing games with a person’s heart is more popular than it should be. Current dating culture involves playing way too many games. A keeper is a man who doesn’t fool around and is serious about what he wants.

One of the sure signs to know when he’s a keeper is if he treats you with respect. 

If he is inconsistent with his behavior, juggling several women at a time, breadcrumbing you, or leaves you wondering what he wants, he’s not the one. Simply stated. However, if he is a mature man, he will take his connection with you seriously and cherish it.

8. He Talks About a Future With You

A man who includes you in his plans for the future gives major green flag energy. It’s most certainly a positive sign if his talks of the future align with his actions. A man who wants to keep you around will make plans to include you in his life for the long haul. 

In contrast, a man who fails to include you in conversations regarding his future is a major red flag. Pay attention.

When a man believes you are the one for him, he will be intentional about it. He will make plans for the future. He will likely even ask for your contribution to help complement his future plans. Therefore, this is a man who truly values you and wants you in his life.

Hopefully, after reading this article, you have learned several ways to determine “when he’s a keeper.” Don’t short change yourself by settling for less. You deserve the best. You deserve the world. Look for these green flags in the person with whom you want to spend the rest of your life.