Strive for openness, honesty, and equality. Because they’re so used to being guarded, most guys will really appreciate a relationship that allows them to express themselves with complete sincerity. It can take time for a guy to “open up”, so, if yours hasn’t yet, be sure to let him know that, should he want to, he can talk to you about anything that’s troubling him. He might not immediately take you up on your offer, but when he does, he’ll really appreciate that he can come straight to you to pour his heart out.
- It’s easiest to be open and honest with someone we consider to be our equal. Try to share experiences, responsibilities, and conversations with your partner – as you come to trust each other, your communication will naturally deepen.
- Even in the closest, most intimate relationships, guys and girls don’t constantly talk about their inner demons and emotional issues – can you imagine how awful relationships would be if we did? One common mistake is to “press” your S.O. for details about what’s troubling him – though any couple should try to have open communication, this doesn’t necessarily mean both partners will always want to talk about serious things.
Listen. Guys want to know that they’re taken seriously. Because many guys have a hard time talking about their emotions with their friends and even their family, they want to feel that, when they open up to you, you notice. During normal conversations, you obviously don’t need to hang on your guy’s every word, but when your guy is talking to you about something serious, give him your full attention. Stay near to him and look him in the eye as you talk – he will undoubtedly appreciate the respect you give him and will do the same for you when you need someone to open up to.
- Listening isn’t just a matter of just sitting there quietly – give your guy time to get his thoughts out, but when there’s a lull in the conversation, add your own thoughts, questions, and suggestions. This will show that you’ve really been listening, making your guy feel valued.
Be positive. Inner happiness shows externally. While you and your guy should be more than comfortable talking about the things that trouble you, most of the time, you’ll simply want to be as happy as you can around each other. Try to have a full and fulfilling life – indulge your hobbies, get plenty of sleep and exercise, and keep an optimistic attitude. When you do hang out with your guy, you’ll probably find that both of you have more fun if you’re free of stress and in good moods.
- There is a sexist stereotype that women should act pleasant and smile around men as a matter of course. Don’t do this – living with a positive outlook will make you and the people around you happier, but pretending to be happy when you’re not is not only disrespectful to yourself, but also not at all what good boyfriends want from their girlfriends.
Be affectionate. One sure-fire way to have your guy feeling great about himself (and you) is to give him affection (within reason). Think of affection as a way of showing how much you care for someone – a healthy amount of affection makes you seem appreciative, while a ton of affection can make you seem a little obsessive, so be reasonable. Your affection doesn’t have to be grandiose or attention-seeking – you might, for instance, just touch him delicately by ‘mistake’ while you walk by him.
Flirt! Most guys love affection, but giving affection is twice as fun (for both parties) if accompanied with some light teasing. Try one of the oldest tricks in the book – playing hard to get. Keep your guy on his toes when it comes to your affections. This will drive him wild and have him completely into you.
- Be cagey with your intentions, but, if you’re playing hard to get, make sure you’re not too cagey, or you’ll never be “gotten.” You don’t always have to hide your true intentions – sometimes, it’s OK to be openly affectionate.
Be romantic. We all know the stereotype – guys are gruff, no-nonsense, unsentimental lovers, while girls are emotional, capricious, and romantic. Real life isn’t nearly so simple. Plenty of guys are openly romantic, while still more are romantics at heart but are embarrassed to be open about their sentimentality. Guys are usually encouraged to engage in romantic gestures – buying chocolates, flowers, etc. Flip this tired old trope on its head with a romantic gesture of your own – you might be surprised how touched your guy is.
8Know him well. This key. Ultimately, to make your guy feel good, you need to know what makes him truly happy and satisfied, which is impossible if you don’t both open up to each other. Know your guy’s quirks – the weird things that make him laugh, his pet peeves, his crazy fears. Have inside jokes that no one else will understand. Know, at a glance, how he’s feeling. You’ll naturally learn these things as you spend more and more time with each other, and, best of all, your guy will learn them about you.
- Remember, the more you know about someone, the easier it is to hurt him or her. As you learn more and more about your guy, be sure to use your knowledge for good, not for evil. It’s all-too-easy in a moment of anger to bring up something deeply personal in a short-sighted attempt to hurt him.
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Make him feel wanted. Humans are social animals. No matter how much satisfaction we can gain from our own solitary pursuits, we need to interact with other people to feel truly “whole.” People want to be wanted. They need to be needed. If you want to make your guy feel good, start here. Depend on him. Let him help you through difficult times. When he does, let him know how much you value him. Your relationship should be a balanced one – just as you rely on him, so should he rely on you.
Philadelphia, PA, USA