9 signs a man genuinely cares about you, according to psychology

When you first start dating a guy, it’s (relatively) normal to be plagued with questions over whether or not he really likes you.

I can’t tell you the number of coffee dates I’ve been on with friends where we analyze every single thing a guy has said or done to decipher whether he really cares for them – or if he’s only after one thing!

Honestly, even when you’ve been in relationships for years, it’s still easy to get in your own head, asking yourself, “Does he really care about me? Or are we just comfortable with each other and plodding along until it eventually ends?”.

Let’s find out for sure. According to psychology, when he really cares about you, you’ll recognize these 9 common signs.

1) He doesn’t like seeing you upset

No one really likes seeing a person they know upset. Unless you’re a total sadist, lack empathy, or really, really despise this person, of course! But when you deeply care for someone, you REALLY don’t like seeing them upset.

So if you ever feel down or cry in front of him, it’s going to upset him – a lot. He won’t like it and he’ll want to do anything to make you feel better.

Even if that’s the wrong thing (like making jokes at totally the wrong time!), he’ll try his best to cheer you back up again.

2) He gets concerned for your safety

No guy who genuinely cares for you will be qualm-free about you riding the night bus at 3am. Of course, you can do what you want. But you best believe that he’ll be concerned for your safety when you do!

When you’re traveling home late at night, he’ll want to know that you’re OK. He might want to pick you up or meet you at the venue so you can travel home together. At the very least, he’ll want to book your Uber for you or be on the phone with you the entire time!

Some people say this is instinctive of him, like how parents get with their kids. They want to protect and look after their kids because they care so much. Which might be why he does this with you – because he loves and cares about you.

But it might also be because he appreciates having you in his life. And he doesn’t want anything bad to happen to someone he cares about so much!

3) He wants to make amends when you argue

A guy who storms out of the house after you’ve argued and never messages you ever again isn’t good news. First up, he probably has some anger issues. But second of all, he doesn’t care about you like you think he does.

If he ALWAYS waits for you to make amends with him, apologize (even when he’s in the wrong), or contact him after a fight, he probably doesn’t care about you that much.

When a guy deeply cares about you, he actually wants to make amends when you argue. He wants to talk things through, hates it when you argue, and wants to find a way to stop the fights for good!

Experts say this isn’t just a sign of someone who cares about you. It’s a sign of a healthy mindset, emotional intelligence, and maturity, too.

4) He’s loyal to you

Loyalty and faithfulness are important in a relationship. In fact, experts say it’s one of the most important things in a relationship – the basis that all couples need!

What it means to be faithful means something different to everyone. But for most couples, it means not cheating or flirting with other people.

Provided you’ve agreed to a monogamous relationship (which is usually the case unless you’ve agreed on it being “open”), he should be faithful to you. He shouldn’t be messaging other women online, swiping on dating apps, or sleeping with anyone else.

If he does, it isn’t just “a mistake”. It’s disrespectful and likely a sign that he doesn’t really care about you or your relationship!

5) He listens to your stories

Even if it’s the most boring story in the world, a man who cares about you is STILL going to listen to every word of it! He’ll even try his best to follow along, ask questions, and actually enjoy what you’re saying.

I see it in TV shows a lot where the man zones out and starts thinking about golf while his wife is telling him about her day. The audience laughs along, but it isn’t that funny, really.

Experts say that listening to your partner strengthens the relationship and demonstrates attentiveness, care, and respect for the other. For you, it can also alleviate stress, motivate you, and increase how comfortable you feel with your partner.

So, no, him not listening isn’t always funny. It’s actually harmful and maybe even a sign that he doesn’t care that much!

6) He compliments you, no matter what you look like

behaviors from a man hes ready for a serious relationship 9 signs a man genuinely cares about you, according to psychology

It isn’t always when you’re dressed to the nines that your man will compliment you! If he really cares about you, he’ll find you beautiful no matter what you wear.

When you’re relaxing in your tracksuit, with coffee stains on your t-shirt, he’ll tell you how gorgeous you look. When you’ve made an effort and bought a new outfit, he’ll tell you how FINE you are!

Why? Because true love isn’t just about what you wear. To get all technical, the reason he finds you so good-looking is probably because when you look at someone you love, you release oxytocin, the chemical responsible for attraction.

Guys only release this chemical if they like, love, are attracted to, or deeply care about you.

7) He’s his most vulnerable with you

Does your guy open up to you? Does he tell you how he’s feeling? When he’s sad, down, anxious, or stressed, does he talk to you about it?

Does he tell you how much he loves you and how important you are to his life? Does he tell you about his past and his triggers? Does he tell you his deepest fears and insecurities about your relationship? Is he totally, utterly himself with you?

The Attachment Theory explains that when a guy feels secure and emotionally safe in his relationship, it encourages emotional expression. Which means he’s vulnerable with you and in front of you.

He might cry, he might not. Either way, he’s definitely his rawest with you emotionally when he truly cares for your relationship.

8) He plans dates/surprises for you

There are a lot of opinions out there about how, what, where, and if guys should plan dates for you. But opinion aside, experts say there are many reasons why he might NOT be planning dates for you.

Some of the reasons range from laziness and a lack of motivation to depression or a fear of rejection. The most important one, however, is a lack of care.

On the flip side of things, when a guy does plan dates or arranges frequent little surprises for you, he DOES care. He’s invested in the relationship, feels appreciated by you, and generally feels connected to you.

9) He respects when you say no

This is probably the most important sign on this list. A guy’s ability to respect your decision when you tell him no, of course, cares for you. But he’s also a decent guy.

You’re allowed to say no whenever you like in a relationship. For sure, some experts say you should pick your battles, that partnerships take compromise, and you must be willing to NOT get your own way all the time for things to really work.

There’s also evidence to suggest that the more easy-going and agreeable you are in relationships, the more likely your relationship will (happily) last.

But even so, there’s a limit. If you’re not in the mood, really don’t want to go out somewhere, or don’t fancy eating at that place for dinner, you can say no. If he really cares about you, he’ll respect it – especially when it comes to the first one!

Final thoughts

Honestly, it’s hard to know if he really cares about you unless you simply ask him. But I know those gut feelings where you feel like he’s lying to you all too well! Or, at least, if he’s lying to himself.

So even if he says all the right things, but you don’t see the signs on this list, it could be bad news. On the flip side, if you recognize these things, but have that gut feeling that something still isn’t right, it could be in your own head.

Or it could be that this relationship just isn’t right for you, regardless of whether he cares for YOU or not.

Only you truly know and can decide where to take things next…

Picture of Amy Reed

Amy Reed

Amy Reed is a content writer from London working with international brands. As an empath, she loves sharing her life insights to help others. When she’s not writing, she enjoys a simple life of reading, gardening, and making a fuss over her two cats.

Enhance your experience of Ideapod and join Tribe, our community of free thinkers and seekers.

Related articles

Most read articles

Get our articles

Ideapod news, articles, and resources, sent straight to your inbox every month.