Women often hope that their men will change, but is it even possible?
Can a man change if he truly loves a woman?
First off, you can’t expect a man to change if it’s what you want but not what he wants. He has to want it too for it to happen. His love for you can be the trigger that gets him started, but it’s his inner desire that should motivate him to become the best possible version of himself.
Secondly, people do change. Our experiences and the lessons we take from them turn us into who we are and change us on their own. So, we are changing all the time, even when we don’t intend to.
Putting purposeful effort into changing into a better person happens and works out too. However, big changes don’t occur overnight, and people frequently go back to who they were because persistence becomes difficult.
So, even if your man loves you, how can you know if he’ll change for you? These 20 truths can help you figure out whether your man will really change this time:
Speak to a certified and experienced relationship coach to help you accept him as he is whilst supporting his own desires to change and grow as a partner. You may want to try speaking to someone via RelationshipHero.com for empathetic, specific, and genuinely insightful relationship advice at its most convenient.
1. You can’t force him or change him yourself.
Whether or not a man will change is entirely up to him, and you need to accept that. Forcing him to change or even putting more effort into it than he does rarely works out for the best. You can’t make him change if he has no inner need to take on that responsibility.
While you should most certainly help him if he asks for your advice, forcing him to accept your help is not going to change him.
The reason a lot of women end up thinking that men don’t change is often that they wanted to change a man who was perfectly happy with himself already. If your man sees nothing wrong with who he is now, he is not going to change for you.
2. You need to have realistic expectations and clear dealbreakers.
Expecting a man to stop being the lying cheater that he was in his past is a very realistic expectation when you want a serious relationship with him.
On the other hand, expecting him to change his entire looks and personality just so he can fit your standards better is an unrealistic expectation.
Ask yourself why you want him to change in the first place.
If you see him as a project that you can work on to make yourself a perfect man, then he’s not the problem in your relationship. On the flip side, if you just want him to treat you better and behave properly toward you, those are the changes that you can expect if he loves you.
You should also be clear about your dealbreakers. For instance, you are not going to tolerate infidelity, and you are going to walk away if it happens. This is just an example of setting boundaries that have real consequences.
You should clearly and openly communicate these boundaries. What are the things that you can and cannot tolerate in a relationship? He should be aware of them in order to change.
3. You should acknowledge his efforts and any progress he makes.
It’s not just that people change, it’s that they try to. Real change requires time, so it’s important to acknowledge the efforts people make in order to get there. If your man makes efforts, and even progress, toward changing, compliment and encourage him. Don’t just wait for him to turn into someone else overnight, acknowledge the process it takes to actually change.
For instance, maybe you wanted him to open up to you more about his dreams, fears, and feelings. It might have been difficult at first, but he started occasionally talking about it with you. Don’t jump to encouraging him to do so more often. Instead, stop and compliment his efforts instead.
For instance, if he has started opening up when you ask him about his feelings, don’t immediately expect him to open up on his own. Tell him how it makes you feel when you get to hear about his inner thoughts and compliment his efforts.
4. You shouldn’t nag him or criticize him too much.
No woman has ever nagged a man into changing. Nagging him will lead to him getting defensive because he feels disrespected. In addition, it will make you look bad. This doesn’t mean that you should stop speaking up about things that bother you. However, the way you talk about them is very important.
Stop nagging your partner, but try instead to communicate with your man in a calm, polite way, even if what you are trying to tell him isn’t so nice. Also, think about the things that you want him to change. Are these things related to his behavior toward you or to his personality and core values?
You can’t expect someone to become a different person. However, if the problem is in how they treat you and it’s affecting your relationship, you have every right to expect a change in behavior.
5. You need to be patient and support him.
Change takes time, so it requires patience. This is why it’s so important to acknowledge and compliment small steps, not wait for the outcome. Support your man in this journey, be patient, and keep your expectations realistic.
Gradually changing everyday habits and forming new ones requires a lot of time. It’s also quite normal to have a few setbacks every now and then. So, be there for your man, and don’t expect him to change overnight.
6. You should encourage him to become the best possible version of himself.
Instead of being overly critical, encourage your man’s growth. Help him become the best possible version of himself without nagging or pressuring him into it. Simply follow his lead instead of forcing him. When he gets excited about this, compliment him and encourage him to bring out the best in him.
You can also set an example by embarking on the road of self-improvement yourself. He needs to change a few things, but what about you? Ask him about it and talk openly about each other’s goals. You can both thrive to be better for each other. What are some changes in behavior that you could make to be the best version of yourself? Talk about your progress and motivate each other!
7. He will change if he wants the best for you.
You must really want to change to do it for real. And you really want to change when you have strong feelings of affection and respect toward a woman you love. If you think that she deserves the best that’s out there, you’ll try to give her the best you got.
Your man will change if he wants to be a better man for you because he thinks that you deserve the best. He will want to rise to your level and make you proud of him. He’ll even tell you that you bring out the best in him and that he wants to be a better man because of you. This is a great sign that he might actually change.
8. He will change if you are special to him.
Everyone has value, but when that one person becomes more valuable to you than anyone or anything else, you have found your special someone.
If your man is aware of the fact that you’re a total catch and a keeper, he will want to change for you because you’re special to him. He knows that you’re one in a million and that he won the lottery when he won your heart. So, he will be willing to change to keep you.
He’ll want to become better for you because he thinks that you deserve the best. You’re that special to him, and he would do anything for you. If you have found the man who makes you feel special, rest assured that he’ll put special efforts into keeping you his.
9. He will change if you’re the only girl for him.
Does he have eyes only for you? Guys want to look around and see what’s out there, but only until they find it. He found you and doesn’t want to be with anyone else anymore. But if he used to be a player, you might be afraid and wonder if he truly has eyes for you alone.
Yes, even a player can change for the woman he loves and stop fooling around. All the guys who aren’t ready for one woman become ready when they find The One. If you’re The One for him, he will change for you, or he’ll at least try to.
He’s not going to risk losing the right woman just to get some fun. So if you make it clear that you’re gone if another girl shows up, he will respect that as your dealbreaker.
10. He will change if compromises come naturally to him now.
We all become more open to compromises when we really want something. It’s easy for a guy to say that a girl is too much for him or high maintenance when he isn’t willing to put in the effort it takes to be with her. But when he really wants her, what she’s asking for suddenly won’t seem like too much. So a guy will be willing to change and meet you halfway.
How open is he when it comes to compromises? If he is willing to put effort into meeting you halfway, he is probably willing to go all the way for you. He will listen to you and adjust his behavior according to what you tell him, or at least find a compromise that works for you both.
11. He will change if he wants to grow up.
There are some habits that we stick to for a very long time, even if they are bad for us. However, something happens that makes us outgrow those habits, and that can be falling in love with someone.
Your man might have been a party animal before but now he makes you a priority. So, you wonder, has he really changed?
It’s possible that he has outgrown his childish ways. The single lifestyle has its benefits, but most people outgrow it and just want to cuddle with someone they love instead of partying all night and looking for casual hookups. Everyone gets there at their own pace, but most people do, and falling in love is usually enough for it to happen.
12. He will change if he knows that you’re not going to tolerate his behavior.
It’s over if he cheats and lies, and you’re not going to tolerate him disappearing on you. He knows this and sees you as a high-value woman that he can’t mess with.
Even if he has a bad reputation, he will make sure to play nice if he sees you as a high-value woman because he takes you seriously.
So, bad boys change sometimes too. They just need to find the right woman and respect her boundaries. If you’ve made it clear that you’re not going to tolerate certain behavior, he is not going to cross or test your boundaries.
13. He will change if he is scared of losing you.
What if he loses you? If he wouldn’t forgive himself for it, he is not going to risk having it happen. He will be aware that certain behaviors will cause you to walk away from him, and he won’t let it happen because he’s scared of losing you. Fear motivates a person to take action or simply behave.
If he wants this relationship to work, he will do all it takes. A man will often change for a woman he loves out of fear of losing her. If he knows that you deserve better, he will do the work to give you that, instead of letting you search for it elsewhere. If you see the signs he doesn’t want to lose you, you have your answer.
14. He will change if he sees a future with you.
It’s crucial to know if your guy sees you as just a fling or if he has real intentions with you. If he sees you as wife material, he’ll want to be husband material (even if he was a bad boy before).
Does he prioritize you and put effort into keeping you around? If so, he is likely to put effort into changing as well. If he is unwilling to change, then that means he doesn’t see a future with you.
A guy will act differently with a woman who is only in his life temporarily compared to a woman he wants to keep around for a long time. If your man sees a long-term future with you, he is likely to want to change for you.
If you talk about your plans for the future and he wants to align your goals, that’s great.
15. He will change if his actions show that, not just his words.
Is he changing, or does he only talk about changing? If he is really putting effort into changing, he will act differently, not just talk about it.
You should always focus on actions rather than words. A lot of people talk about who they want to be, but not a lot of them actually take the necessary steps to get there.
If your man is proving his decision to change by behaving accordingly, you can trust him. When a man loves a woman, he is willing to take action, not just promise that he will. He will treat you better if he is trying to be a better man for you.
16. He will change if he is not scared of commitment anymore.
A lot of guys are scared of commitment, but then you see them happily ever after with some other woman. They were ready to commit, just not to you. These other women probably also heard “I’m not ready for a serious relationship” up until one point when a guy got ready because he fell in love.
Even if your man was a commitment-phobe before, if he is ready to settle down, it’s entirely possible that he will. If he loves you enough to change his lifestyle and become husband material, it doesn’t matter who he was in the past.
Naturally, you should stay cautious since people often go back to their old ways, but you should trust his intentions if he proves himself through action.
17. He will change if he’s driven by love for you.
Love is a strong motivator. It can make people believe that anything is possible and give them the wind beneath their wings that they needed to change. So, changing for someone you love is a fairly natural thing to do.
People do crazy things for love. It often motivates them to be better and live up to the standards of their loved one. Your man probably wants to win you over and keep you around, so he’ll change for you.
He’ll want to have a future with you if he loves you, so he’ll talk about your future together and how you can align your goals. If he loves you, he will be serious about you, and you’ll be the only woman in his eyes.
18. He will change if he wants to.
Most importantly, a man will change if that is what he wants, not just what you want. If you want him to change, and you tell him which things he needs to change, he is not likely to actually do something about them because he doesn’t want to change.
He will just talk about changing and maybe put some effort into proving it just to make you leave him alone. But he will not actually change, unless that is what he wants too.
Most of us want to grow and improve, and we put effort into that for ourselves, not just for our loved ones. If your man wants to change, he will change, but he has to have the inner will to work on it not just feel like he has to obey your orders.
19. He will change if he persists in his efforts.
Change requires a lot of time, so your man needs to be persistent for it to take place. If he has proven to be better on one or two occasions, it’s not the same as changing for good. For this to happen, he will have to let go of the old patterns and establish new ones.
If your man continuously puts effort into changing, then it’s likely to happen! Encourage him to keep going at it until he’s the man he wants to be. Let him know that you will both grow as a couple, and your relationship will strengthen throughout the years too. It’s not something that can be done quickly, it’s an ongoing process that will last for a long time.
20. He will change if he gets help.
In the end, the real proof that your man is serious about changing is if he’s willing to get help doing so. It can be difficult to admit that we can’t do everything on our own. Sometimes, we need help, and it’s often when we’re making big changes.
Suggest counseling when you talk to your man and see how he reacts. If he is serious about your relationship, he will be willing to work on your issues. The best way to prove that is to talk to someone about what you’re going through. Let a therapist help you get back on track or turn over a new leaf so you can start over.
Still not sure how to deal with an imperfect partner? If things are challenging in your relationship right now, it might help the situation to speak to a trained relationship counselor who can offer guidance and support through whatever you are dealing with. You don’t have to go through this alone. So why not chat online to a relationship expert from Relationship Hero who can help you figure things out.