The 6 Guys You Date in Your 20s

I’ve always jokingly told my friends, “I’m going to write a book someday about the boys I’ve dated and people are going to think it’s a fiction comedy.”

And sadly, it’s true–people probably would.

My dating history has lots of…quirks, for lack of a better (appropriate) word. However, it’s taught me plenty of lessons and given me the tools to figure out who exactly I want to build a life with. And for that, I’m thankful.

This post isn’t based solely on my own experiences, but it’s a curated list from the ladies in my life and I have a feeling if you’re a woman in her 20s, you’ll relate. So here it is in all her glory:

The 6 Types of Guys You’ll Date in Your 20’s

1. The Good on Paper Guy

You know the one. He’s got a great degree. His family is fabulous. He’s smart, kind, and loves kids/puppies. He knows how to cook. His place is always clean and tidy. You struggle coming up with a list of qualities you don’t like, but…

He’s just not that interesting and honestly, there’s no spark. This one is hard to walk away from, but in the end what’s on paper doesn’t count–it’s what’s in your heart. Do you both a favor and respectfully walk away.

Lesson learned: Men aren’t checklists–you’re looking for a partner who challenges you and helps you grow, not one that meets all your “requirements.”

2. The “He’s Too Hot For Me” Hunk

You know you’re a dime, a complete catch, but somehow you’ve managed to snag a man totally out of your league. His jawline is SHARP. His eyes are PIERCING. And those arms? Talk about chiseled. Every time you see him you ask yourself, “How can one human be so genetically blessed?”

And honestly, he’s thinking the same thought every time he looks in the mirror. Honey, he’s more in love with himself than he is with you. Sure, he spices up your Instagram feed with his gorgeous face and impeccable style, but the depth? It’s lacking.

Lesson learned: 1) No one is “out of your league” because you’re a queen. 2) It’s going to take a lot more than a pretty face to keep you engaged and entertained.

3. The Guy Who’s Still Not Over His Ex

You learned his exes’ name on your first date. He told you how she totally screwed him over and he’s like “so over her” and “ready to move on.” A few weeks into your new relationship and you’re pretty sure you know every detail of this woman’s life. Her grandma’s name? Jean. Her favorite coffee? Vanilla latte with almond milk and a sprinkle of cinnamon. Has she been to Europe? Yep, in 2017 and she didn’t stop talking about it for 2 weeks and it was “just really annoying because she acted like she was from there.”

Run. Because I promise you he will be doing the same thing shortly–full speed directly back to his ex. He’s not over her sis. When someone’s actually “over” someone, they don’t spend time (all the time) talking about them OR trashing them. He needs time to heal and you need to get the heck out of there.

Lesson learned: Everyone has “the one who got away.” But that doesn’t mean they should third-wheel your love story. Move along sir.

4. The Really (REALLY) Needy One

It feels good to be needed, wanted, adored. There’s nothing better than waking up to 3 texts from a guy telling you how beautiful you are and how they can’t wait to see you later. Anytime you want to hang out he’s totally free and basically at your front door ready to rumble. You guys never fight because somehow you’re always right and even when you’re not, he “doesn’t want to waste time arguing when you could be cuddling.” He asks you daily if you still like him, still want to be with him, still think he’s attractive, etc.

Do you need an inhaler? Can you breathe? Are you drowning? There’s a big difference between wanting someone and requiring their presence in order to survive. This guy can’t go a minute without hearing from you and being reminded just how much you love him. It’s great to show you care, but wowza–when do you have time to care for yourself?

Lesson learned: Find a man who wants you but doesn’t need you.

5. The One Who “Isn’t Ready To Commit”

Things are great between you two. You’re going on dates regularly, he texts you every day, and he’s even met a bunch of your friends. Sure, he’s kind of flaky, hasn’t told his mom about you, and won’t call you his girlfriend, but boys will be boys! Life is good and you’re pretty sure you’re in love. And he feels the same way, right?

Wrong. Don’t even waste your time on this one unless you’re looking for something super duper casual (you go girl). He’s not “afraid to commit.” He’s afraid to give up the 6 other girls he’s dating and isn’t ready to clean up the mess he’s made. The only thing that’s complicated is his ego. Walk away.

Lesson learned: You’re not a second option. And if you are, don’t let yourself be an option at all.

6. The One Who Got Away

This relationship makes you feel on top of the world. You finally understand exactly what everyone was talking about when they said “when you know you know.” Because YOU DEFINITELY KNOW. I mean, how could you be wrong? He’s everything the others weren’t.

Love is hard, but you were positive you two could handle it. Nothing could get in the way of how you felt for each other, until it did. Whether it was distance, jobs, another person, or something else entirely, this love slipped through your fingers and you’re not sure if you’ll ever completely heal. But guess what? You’ll be okay. And if he was your forever human, you’ll find him again. If not? You’ll find the one who is.

Lesson learned: Better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all. Cheesy but true.

Number 7

I know this is titled “the 6 guys,” but I’ve got to give number 7 some credit. He’s the one who sticks around. The one who makes you believe in love again. The one who meets you where you’re at and makes you say, “I’m glad I didn’t give up.”

If you’re lucky, he’ll be the one at the end of the aisle (if you’re into that sort of thing). Give him a chance. Cut him some slack. Don’t let your history define how you feel about him. He’s not all the others–don’t treat him like he is.

CONGRATS. You’ve found your human. All it took was wading through crap to get the goods. Worth it? Totally. 100% No doubt.

If you’re currently dating a 1-6, I feel for you sis. Hang in there. It gets better when you move along and decide you’re ready for lucky number 7

And if you’re already on 7, DON’T SCREW IT UP. Especially not when the “too hot hunk” comes around with his bright white smile and tattooed arms…close your eyes and walk away–he’s not worth it.

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