03/24/2014 04:38 pm ET Updated May 24, 2014

George Clooney and Leonardo DiCaprio: Perpetual Bachelors?

It was recently announced that George Clooney's ex-girlfriend Stacy Keibler got married just eight months after she and Clooney split -- so clearly, marriage was something she wanted and cared about. Given the fact that bachelors like Clooney are usually known for not settling down permanently, it's a wonder that women embark on relationships with them knowing their history. What is it that blurs that reality so women ignore the warning signs and are willing to take a chance on one anyway? They must clearly see that blinking red light and yet, they continue to drive through it. So what do you need to know when you encounter a bachelor the likes of George Clooney, Leonardo DiCaprio or Sean Combs?

There is no question that it is easy to be swept off your feet. Even though there is a part of you that is aware he's unlikely to commit forever, because he is willing to commit for now, it is a hard temptation to pass up. First of all, many of these men are attractive, successful, charismatic and probably able to rev up your world and spice up your life with luxurious dinners and vacations as well as professional and personal connections. Typically, there is a gain when you hitch your wagon to a bachelor and that makes your life better -- but that usually won't last and could come with the price of disappointment and heartbreak.

Second of all, there is the other possibility that you believe, like Cinderella, you are going to be The One who will lead this bachelor into the kingdom of marriage. This idea that you are special and, consequently, things will turn out differently for you is a powerful pull and a reason women often find themselves deep in a relationship with a man who has long resisted walking down the aisle -- and who may never do so. In fact, they may be willing to remain in this committed relationship indefinitely. However, typically the shelf life is up when the push for marriage enters the picture and becomes part of the equation.

How, then, can you protect yourself? The most important thing you can do is go in with your eyes wide open. Before you get in too deep, really consider his past. How many relationships has he had? Has he ever been married and, if so, how long did it last and what are his thoughts about remarriage? For example, George Clooney has been completely upfront about never wanting to get married again. So, with a guy like him, what you see is what you get. Determine ahead if getting married and having a family is your objective. If that is the case, weigh his past against your future goal of marriage, and ask yourself how likely it is that he is going to change at this point.

Along the same lines, take notice of how you two come together as a couple. Are you simply fitting into his already established life -- always going out with his friends, to his events or meeting only at his apartment? That can be a lot of fun and quite flattering at first because he makes you feel wanted, but pay attention to his ability and desire to compromise. Is he willing to come meet you some nights and go to your parties? Does he consistently refuse to come to your place because it is out of the way for him? If you notice he shifts away from you when you try to have your own needs met and look for reciprocity, that might be an indication that this is much more about him than it is about you. Figuring this out will give you a sense of where he is coming from. If he is always looking out for himself and never considering what's good for you, stop overextending yourself and instead consider a relationship with a more eligible partner who is willing to share.

The bottom line is that you have to go in clear from the get-go about what you want. If you are OK with enjoying his company and see where it goes without any guarantees, then by all means jump in and have fun. If you are looking for a husband, then consider yourself warned up front and pay attention to the signs. In some ways it is the difference between renting and owning a home -- you will always have a roof over your head, but some might want more security than others. If you are looking for that quality of security, you might be better off by simply being flattered by the bachelor's advances, putting them in your self-esteem pocket, and walking away. If Stacy Keibler had done that, she might have been married a long time ago.

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