Red Flags and Green Lights

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Green Lights: Get Revved Up for True Romance

Seeing the positive signs below? This guy could be the one:

Green Light #1: Affection and Attention "Someone who displays genuine affection is a keeper," says Mitchell. That includes everyday niceties, from opening the car door for you to saying sincere, supportive things about your family and your lifestyle choices. But what really distinguishes character is doing what he says he's going to do -- and letting you know if plans change. If he's supposed to meet you at 8:00 for dinner but he's stuck at the office, a phone call to let you know he'll be there at 8:20 (and for him to actually show up by then) is admirable.

Green Light #2: Becoming Part of His Group Feeling comfortable and accepted in all of your new guy's circles is a good sign of compatibility. As you meet his friends, family, and colleagues, notice how you fit in. Do you feel like you're becoming part of the group? If not, your relationship can become strained, warns Mitchell. Think about the non-Greek groom in the movie, My Big Fat Greek Wedding. "The poor guy will continue to fight his outsider status and try to fit in with his new family his entire life," says Mitchell.

Green Light #3: Good Family Relations The way members of his family communicate with one another can be very telling. What is his relationship with his mother like? With his father? Siblings? How does he treat everyone overall? If you can't meet the family right away, pay close attention to what he says about his mom. "Having established loving relationships with the women in his life is always a good sign," says Thomashauer. It shows he has respect for women and will treat you well.

Green Light #4: Enthusiasm About the Future As you look at the road ahead of you, remember it's not where you are, it's where you're going. Let's say your man has no money -- maybe he's in school or starting his own business -- but he's very optimistic and passionate about his future. This level of enthusiasm is a jewel.

Green Light #5: Friendship and Chemistry Chemistry comes and goes in all relationships, warns Thomashauer. And, in some cases, it may not even arrive until after a friendship has first developed. If you two share only chemistry, your relationship will be a flash in the pan. If you want a longtime love, you need both friendship and chemistry.

Continued on page 3:  How to Proceed with Caution


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