In the modern dating world, finding someone who is a good fit can be hard. It can seem as if the dating pool is full of people who don’t respect others or aren’t looking for real love and commitment.
The good news is that there are still genuine people out there. If you’re a heterosexual woman, learning the signs of a gentleman can be beneficial, so you can find a partner who will meet your needs.
How do you define a ‘gentleman’?
Before diving into the qualities of a gentleman, it’s important to know what this term means. There isn’t one definition of the modern gentleman; rather, a gentleman is someone who shows care for others and maintains a commitment to high moral standards.
The modern gentleman is successful but is about more than just his success. He values human connection and shows empathy for others. He’s concerned about how his actions affect the world around him and is known for showing good character.
There are many definitions for this term. Instead, the characteristics of a gentleman explain what the term means. In general, these characteristics center on maturity, respect, and self-awareness.
25 sure signs of a perfect gentleman
Being in a relationship with someone who shows signs of a gentleman is beneficial because it increases the chances that you’ll be treated with care and respect.
So, what makes a gentleman? The signs below are indicative of gentleman behavior in relationships.
This means he will remember the things that you say, and he’ll take them to heart. For instance, if you mention that you enjoy theater, he’ll surprise you with tickets for your birthday.
2. He has goals for himself
If he is a gentleman, he’ll want to be successful. This means he isn’t satisfied with doing just enough to get by.
Someone with a gentleman personality will have clear goals for himself, and he’ll actively be taking steps to achieve them. This could look like taking extra classes to earn a job-related certification or having a five-year financial plan.
3. He still makes kind gestures
You’ve probably heard the phrase, “Chivalry isn’t dead.” While it may be less common than in the past, the truth is that there are still chivalrous men.
There are some men who still follow the rules of being a gentleman, including opening the door for a woman and pulling out her chair.
Politeness is one of the key qualities of a gentleman, so this is a trait to look out for in potential mates. This can look like showing courtesy to service workers, such as cashiers and restaurant staff, or courteous language in all interactions.
The point is that a true gentleman will treat everyone with respect, regardless of their social status or standing.
5. He’s always on time
Punctuality is one of the qualities of a gentleman in a relationship. He is always on time for dates because he values your time.
He won’t just be on time for dates with you; he’ll value punctuality in all aspects of his life. He’ll be on time for work, meetings with friends, and get-togethers with family.
6. He follows through on what he says he’ll do
No one likes a partner who makes empty promises, but the good news is that one of the signs of a true gentleman is that he’ll keep his promises to you.
If he says he’ll take you on vacation or help you with a home renovation project, he’ll follow through, and you’ll quickly learn that you can count on him.
7. He has a strong work ethic
Chances are that you’re not interested in a man you have to take care of all the time, which is why finding someone who knows how to be a perfect gentleman is helpful.
The gentleman personality values a strong work ethic. He will give 100% effort to his job and never cut corners. This means he’ll also be willing to do his part in the relationship, and you’ll never feel like it is one-sided.
8. He’s a problem-solver
There’s no problem that a gentleman isn’t willing to solve, including problems that crop up in your relationship. Rather than avoiding issues or blaming you for everything that goes wrong, he’ll make a real effort to compromise and resolve the issue.
When you meet someone who shows this trait, the relationship is probably worth pursuing because research shows that positive problem-solving skills are linked to marital satisfaction.
9. He’s helpful
Helpfulness is one of the top signs of a gentleman. When you’re in a relationship with one, you won’t ever have to worry about asking for too much.
He’ll always be willing to help you, whether picking your car up from the repair shop or practicing a presentation with you the night before a big meeting.
10. He’s open-minded
If he’s a gentleman, he’ll be open to different perspectives and respectful toward those with different worldviews.
His open-mindedness will mean you can have conversations about difficult topics, including those you don’t see eye-to-eye on, and he may even be willing to change his views.
11. He respects your boundaries
Boundaries are important to healthy relationships, as they allow you to retain your identity, even when you’re committed. A gentleman will respect your boundaries, which means he will have no problem with you exploring your interests and maintaining friendships outside the relationship.
When you’re in a relationship with a gentleman, you won’t have to worry about giving up your own needs for the sake of the relationship. He’ll respect your time and space while meeting your needs for affection and connection.
One of the most important signs of a gentleman is that he will take accountability for his actions. When he makes a mistake or hurts your feelings, he will own up to it, show genuine remorse, and change his behavior.
With a gentleman, you won’t have to worry that he’ll minimize his mistakes or deflect the blame onto someone else. He’ll take full responsibility because he has the maturity to do so.
13. He maintains his own beliefs
While a gentleman will respect your viewpoints and be open to new ideas, this doesn’t mean he will be a doormat. He can maintain his belief system while also respecting the beliefs of others.
What this means is that a gentleman will stay true to his values and remain confident in his opinions. It is because of this confidence that he’s able to be open to other ways of thinking.
14. He’s faithful
If you’ve had a bad experience with past relationships, you may start to believe that all men cheat, but this isn’t the case. If he’s a gentleman, he’ll remain faithful.
He’ll know that part of what makes a gentleman is the ability to stay faithful, even in the face of temptation. A real gentleman will be intentional about being faithful by setting boundaries around the relationship.
For instance, he will cut off any woman who tries to get too close to him, and he’ll avoid any thoughts of others. He will view monogamy as a conscious choice that he makes every day.
15. He cares about other people’s feelings
A true gentleman isn’t callous and cold; he is mindful of other people’s feelings. He won’t ever go out of his way to hurt someone else, and he will show concern for the needs of others.
If he has to deliver bad news at work, for example, he will think about his chosen words because he doesn’t want to be insensitive.
16. He values honesty
Someone straightforward and honest has the characteristics of a gentleman. He won’t ever withhold the truth, and you won’t have to worry about catching him in a lie.
You’ll notice that he is upfront and honest about his intentions, and he’ll never try to dupe you by telling you what he thinks you want to hear. If he does say something you want to hear, it’s because he truly means it.
You won’t have to beg for attention or affection from a gentleman. He will give you the attention you need through physical affection, good morning texts, or simply time spent together.
You’ll never feel like an afterthought in a relationship with a gentleman. He may spend some time with friends or engage in hobbies, but he’ll always make time for you.
18. He’s a good communicator
If he knows how to be a gentleman, he’ll be an effective communicator. His communication will be clear and open, and you’ll never feel like he leaves you guessing.
Because he’s a strong communicator, he won’t only tell you how he’s feeling but also listen to you when you’re speaking. These communication skills can make a relationship, as studies have found that good communication is linked to relationship satisfaction.
19. He has integrity
A gentleman is true to his values and does the right thing, regardless of whether someone is watching him. He will be honest and moral in public and behind closed doors.
He’ll be the same person in public and private because he’s never pretending to be someone he’s not.
20. He wants to protect you
Another one of the signs of a true gentleman is that he has the desire to protect you. He won’t allow you to walk back to your car alone at night and always call to ensure you make it home safely.
These behaviors show that he is willing to fulfill the role of a protector. In turn, you’ll feel a strong sense of safety when you’re with him.
21. He treats your family and friends with respect
He’s not a gentleman if he can’t be respectful toward the important people in his life. A true gentleman will be kind to your family and friends because he recognizes that being in a relationship with you means showing consideration for others in your life.
When you’re in a relationship with a gentleman, your friends and family will love him because he treats them like they are worthy of respect and care. He’ll take the time to get to know them and learn their interests and personalities.
22. He shows respect for women, children, and older adults
A gentleman doesn’t feel the need to dominate or show power over others. Instead of viewing women, children, and older adults as beneath him, he will treat them respectfully.
He won’t talk about others as if they are less than him, nor will he try to exploit them.
23. He’s consistent
No one is perfect, not even a gentleman, but he will at least be consistent in his actions. Doing the right thing, and staying true to his word, won’t be the exception for a gentleman; they’ll be the norm.
A gentleman may occasionally make a mistake, but on the whole, he will remain consistent, and you’ll feel like you always know what to expect from him.
A gentleman knows how to manage his emotions, even the intense or unpleasant ones. He won’t lose his cool when he’s angry or frustrated.
Instead of letting his emotions get the best of him, a gentleman knows how to stay regulated, have a calm discussion, and cope without losing control.
25. He’s never abusive
Finally, one of the top signs of a true gentleman is that his behavior will never be abusive. He will never turn to physical violence to manage conflict or assert dominance or use psychologically abusive tactics.
This is because a gentleman respects his partner and recognizes her right to dignity. He will never call names, manipulate, or intentionally hurt feelings.
If you want to know the signs of a gentleman, the answers to the following questions are also helpful.
How does a real gentleman act?
A real gentleman shows maturity, care, and consideration for others. He’ll be open-minded, faithful, and attentive to your needs in a relationship. Rather than being selfish or inconsiderate, a true gentleman will make sacrifices to meet your needs and take your feelings into consideration.
Learn more about how to be more loving and considerate in the following video:
How do you know if a guy is a true gentleman?
If a man is a true gentleman, he will consistently show the qualities of a gentleman. He will display these signs not only at the beginning of a relationship but also as time goes on.
A true gentleman isn’t acting to impress you; these chivalrous behaviors are who he really is.
Can someone learn how to be a perfect gentleman?
Being a gentleman requires intentional effort, and it also requires maturity. Fortunately, someone who doesn’t show all the signs of a gentleman can learn some of these behaviors.
For example, someone who hasn’t learned gentleman behavior can work with a counselor or mentor to develop stronger skills in the areas of communication, problem-solving, and work ethic.
If you want a healthy adult relationship with a man, one strategy is to look for someone who shows the signs of a gentleman. When you choose a partner with these qualities, he will likely be mature, respectful, and attentive to your needs.
If you’re already in a relationship, and you feel your partner lacks some of these desirable qualities, the truth is that a person can learn how to be a gentleman. Sometimes, couples can grow together in a relationship, resolving personal shortcomings that contribute to problems.
Couples counseling can be an excellent resource if your significant other isn’t displaying the gentleman personality traits you seek. In counseling sessions, the two of you can learn how to improve your communication, correct unhealthy patterns, and meet each other’s needs more fully.
Jenni Jacobsen is a licensed social worker with a master's degree in social work from The Ohio State University, and she is in the process of completing her dissertation for a Doctorate of Philosophy in Psychology. She has worked Read more in the social work field for 8 years and is currently a professor at Mount Vernon Nazarene University. She writes website content about mental health, addiction, and fitness.
Licensed as both a social worker through Ohio Board of Counselors, Social Workers, and Marriage/Family Therapists and school social worker through Ohio Department of Education as well as a personal trainer through American Council on Exercise.
(Jenni Jacobsen is also listed in Best Marriage Therapists in Ashland)
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