Note: I recently wrote a list of red-flag warnings for women about men, and I promised equal time to help men. Here it is ...
Woman have brought men misery, ecstasy, and everything in between for millions of years, and that is not likely to change anytime soon. The only way men could possibly make it through the dating scene in one piece is to learn the art of how to choose a woman who is most likely to enhance his life over the long haul, avoid the ones who are purveyors of pain, and I am here to help.
Being a therapist and a woman, I have seen dysfunctional females in action, and I know what they do and how they think. The madness happens when some poor man enters the picture like a hungry fish in a lake. He swims up, bites the hook and ends up in the frying pan all in a very short period of time. The sad thing is it could all be prevented if guys would approach women differently - with a skeptical attitude where trust is gained over a significant period of time. What is significant? I think two years of dating will tell a person 90 percent of what they need to know.
Instead, what I see too often is a man falls head over heels in love and gets himself in too deep, too soon. Before his heart has palpitated a dozen times, the part of him that loves to rescue and fix kicks in and he makes plans to remodel her house, buy her a car, pay for some plastic surgery, and take her on some cool vacations. Men tell me it makes them feel good and needed to help a woman with her problems, but as soon as the paint is dry on the last room in the house the dream may well become a nightmare as he realizes Miss Wonderful is really a crazy train wreck - come on, you know it happens!
So DO NOT quickly move in, get married, make capital purchases for her, pay her bills, do more for her than change a light bulb or buy anything together including puppies, kittens and other items difficult to divide or leave. If you do these types of things before a woman is attached to you, she will associate you with what you can do for her rather than who you are and how she feels about you.
So in my role as a public servant and educator, I am providing a list of red flag warnings that will help men sort out the women who aren't sincere. To make things easier, I have divided the red flag issues into different departments ... you can thank me later:
The Department of Immaturity, Shallowness and Dependency
1. Debbie P. Drunkerson. The P stands for party. Feels most comfortable in bars and loves staying out late with friends. Note: People who don't party are "boring."
2. Has never been independent. Has relied on parents, family, boyfriends, husbands or divorce settlements to get by. May work but hates it. Has little or no interest in education, training, or a career. Prays nightly for a man who believes a woman shouldn't work. Sadly, at the core, it's a confidence issue.
3. Gucci Vuitton Jacobs. You can see by her expensive presentation that she is into the finest material goods and experiences money can buy. Obsesses about fashion, vacations and has her cosmetic dentist, skin specialist and plastic surgeon on speed dial. Being vain is her thing. Oh, and do you have a yacht?
4. Flashy Flo. If only her enormous boobs could talk. Her favorite pattern is leopard and her jewelry looks like it came from a fishing lure box. She's charming as all get-out, and sex and attention are the bait. You'll get it all for a very high price - including your bruised and damaged heart. Don't be surprised if she texts 14 other guys while dating you, looking to see who will ante up the most. Wear a condom.
5. The rebel. Hell-raiser and non-conformist, no matter her age, she's 17 for life.
6. Attention-seeker. Feels terrible about herself, so must do what she can to get validation that she's worthy and desirable. When she feels you're off your game you'll find her talking with someone else.
The Department of Manipulation
1. The Fertile Financial Planner. These women can have a baby at the snap of a finger, love sex, preferably during ovulation, and just won't use birth control. They'll get pregnant and may want you to stick around and help raise the child, but most importantly, she'll appreciate the child support you'll be paying.
2. The Poor Soul. Counting on your soft heart, her story mirrors a Greek tragedy. Abandoned by her parents, she was raised in an orphanage where they forgot to feed her and boy is she hungry now - for you to support her. Oh, and did she tell you about her dancing job?
3. Rebound Reba. Can't be alone so must have a relationship lined up at all times and at all cost. Will drop you when she finds "someone better," even though we all know he's much worse.
4. The Misleader. She's not ready for a relationship ... yet. Allows you to hang on, pay for things and keep your hopes up. If she isn't all in, don't you be in.
The Department of Mental Disorders
1. Personality Disorders Beware. At least one in 10 women has one, so educate yourself - the most common ones are Borderline Personality Disorder, Narcissism, Sociopath, and Dependent Personality Disorder. Quick help guide: Look for abandonment and victim issues, extreme moods, lack of empathy, no conscience, know-it-all, self-absorption, always blames others.
2. Drama Queen. See Personality disorders.
3. Chronically ill pill popper. Has more ailments than a monkey in a science lab and doctors can't seem to pinpoint the cause. She definitely knows which docs are loose with the prescription pad and isn't beyond buying pills on the street.
So there's the short list, fellows - I truly hope it helps. It breaks my heart to see a man in my office who feels like a complete fool after having been duped by a woman who used and abused him in her own self interest. I wish all of us treated you like you deserve.
HuffPost Lifestyle is a daily newsletter that will make you happier and healthier — one email at a time. Learn more