You may have heard that girls mature faster than boys, which could be why May-December relationships used to be the norm. However, plenty of frustrated women in the dating field would likely say that some men just never grow up. If you’re currently into casual dating, a man’s level of emotional maturity might not be a concern; after all, childlike abandon is a plus when your main goal is having fun. But if you’re looking to settle down into a serious relationship, there are some definite red flags to watch out for.
If a man only judges a book by its cover and not the wisdom inside the pages, he’s not being mature or intelligent. A shallow guy wants a trophy girl, so he spends his time chasing women and his money on fashion. He might even refer to himself as a PUA or pick up artist and read all the latest books on how to manipulate women. Of course, we know that men are biologically programmed to sow their seeds far and wide and that may be fine for a while. However, it takes maturity to overcome those urges and realize what a mistake it would be to throw away the ideal woman.
Some men just can’t let go of their old habits—staying out late, partying, hanging with the boys, wasting time playing video games—to the point where they can’t see themselves married, with kids, or fielding the responsibilities of an adult life. This type of guy often has all kinds of acquaintances, but not a lot of true, intimate friendships. Maybe he even lives with his parents. This Peter Pan will never make a great life partner, although he might just snap out of it when he realizes all his drinking buddies are now married with kids.
He might be depressed, in which case he actually needs help from a doctor or other professional. However, if a guy is always looking at the clouds instead of the silver lining or the cons instead of the pros—whining, complaining or just giving off a bad attitude—he’s not mature enough to deal with life’s inevitable ups and downs. If he’s still wounded by an ex-girlfriend, tells everyone about his past traumas or delights in playing a victim, you should probably steer clear unless you have a thing for playing nursemaid.
Men who can’t be open and authentic are often letting their fears guide them. They’re scared to be honest about their feelings, scared to express themselves and often scared of commitment or intimacy. A man who’s afraid will stuff his feelings down inside, and become frustrated or angry if you want to talk about yours—resulting in him either exploding or withdrawing. This kind of guy’s fears often overlap into other areas of his life too, so you might find he has an entry level job rather than a career or does just enough to get by.
If your guy struts around like a peacock or calls himself the King of the Jungle, watch out—it could be the sign of an overinflated ego or unhealthy narcissism. Despite the bravado, he’s really insecure. This kind of man pours on just enough charm to hook a woman, and once he has her interest, the game changes. No matter what you say or do, it’s never good enough to convince him how incredibly special he is. And, if you mention anything about his behavior—his disrespect, his temper tantrums, or even whether he forgot to take out the garbage or mow the lawn—he will retaliate by taking a personal stab at you.