As your everyday guy, it is with an awkward sense of irony that I endeavor to write this article. Particularly because I have been called a loser myself at least a half-dozen times — and have earned the title with flying colors.
Now, because of this moral ambiguity, I’m going to define being a “loser” as someone who is intentionally willing to sabotage, drain, abuse, and manipulate their way through insecurity and love in relationships.
If you have a feeling your boyfriend might fit the bill, please do keep reading.
He Projects His Failures Onto You
Are you constantly made to feel guilty about things you had no direct control over? Chances are he’s attempting to lessen his own guilt by projecting that failure onto you.
Despite their losses, your typical loser will refuse to lose. Because to do so would mean learning from their mistake. It would mean actually confronting it for once.
Wouldn’t that be nice?
He Uses You As Stress Relief
If sarcasm and spite are the sauces of your relationship, it is likely your boyfriend is using you as a doormat for his pent-up stress.
While channeling some stress is part of the everyday wear-and-tear of a relationship, the situation becomes critical once his emotional stability hinges on bringing you down.
Unless this behavior is confronted early-on, resentment and conflict-avoidance will eventually spell the end of your patience and his excuses.
He Weaponizes Your Insecurity
Nothing spells loser more poignantly than someone who is willing to exploit vulnerability and fear in order to buffer their own emotional stability and self-esteem or self-regard. They need your emotions to validate their own worth.
The desire to control, by strangling your own emotional stability, is common in those who have very little self-reliance. Rendering them the vampires of the relationship world. If your boyfriend plays a constant emotional catch-me-if-you-can or is routinely hot and cold, you might want to re-configure your priorities with your own heart in pole position.
Depriving them of their self-aggrandizing resource will lead to a telling showdown that will force them to confront their emotional self-reliance.
However, be advised that a small measure of manipulation is normal in almost every relationship and shouldn’t be labeled as an outright sign that you are being willfully trodden on. In this case, we’re talking flagrant and conscious manipulation, with a long-term agenda of dominating and controlling your emotions.
He’s Consistently Inconsistent
Intense, sporadic moments of passion are all fine and dandy, but consistency is the only true hallmark of commitment and respect. If your boyfriend’s general approach to the relationships seems to be that of stepping in to fix the fences only when critically necessary, you might want to question how big of a priority the relationship really is to him.
Perhaps I’m going a little overboard here in categorizing this particular behavior as inherently negative, however, I’m convinced that consistency and a measure of self-sacrifice are part-and-parcel of genuinely attempting a long-term relationship. I know far too many people (both male and female) who openly confide to me that their objective in their relationship is to “ride until the wheels fall off”. Which, to me, is like saying that they’re going to milk the cow as long as they can without feeding it.
He Talks Behind Your Back
A boyfriend who has a habit of talking behind your back is a quintessential loser. If his argumentation and opinion are two-faced, meaning he calls you (a) to your face but (z) when you aren’t around, his inherent loserness is even more astounding. I say astounding, but realistically — this is probably more common than I’m willing to admit to myself. After all, who hasn’t been on the tail-end of an uncomfortable tirade aimed at discrediting that person’s partner. Show of hands anyone?
He’s A Relationship Role Dictator
Guys who insists on specific roles in relationships should be avoided like the plague. By “roles” I am absolutely not referring to overt sexism (which is a given in terms of being a loser), I am talking about individuals who are willfully ignorant that you are your own person, with your own wants and needs.
A classic case of this would be those who create roles based on their own routine, almost always incorrectly assuming their needs coincide with their partners’. John Doe returns home after a laborious eight-hour shift and because he’s been working all day, expects and demands his partner to have the food ready.
The point is; he can neither expect nor demand. You are entitled to your own routine which is entirely independent of that of your partner, should you so choose. If it makes sense, and this routine is mutually agreed to, then so be it. Nevertheless, it should never be taken for granted.
Roles imposed by a sole person in a relationship are inherently damaging because they cast existential shackles on the freedom of their partner. If specific roles do crop up they should be mutually agreed upon.
He’s Hiding Stuff From You
If your boyfriend is hiding aspects of his past or present or misrepresenting his own existential foibles, you may be dealing with a loser. I say “may” because often it can be well-intentioned (they might have attempted to bury their baggage with the aim of protecting your feelings or insecurity).
Well-intentioned or not, hiding skeletons in the closet has a nasty habit of corrupting trust in the long-run and is a particularly adept way of breeding insecurity. If he is distorting aspects of his life (or past), he is lurking dangerously close to the loser event horizon, whether or not he is attempting to put a lid on insecurity.
If he knows that revealing his secret garden can compromise the relationship, yet refuses to disclose the nature of his baggage lest he loses the comfort of playing it both ways, then you’re probably dealing with — you might have guessed by now — a class-A loser. Then again, perhaps I’ve got it all wrong. What do you think? Am I being too harsh?