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11 Clear Signs a Guy is Being Protective

handsome guy with a leather jacket being protective with his beautiful girlfriend and kissing her in a park

If you’re looking for the signs a guy is being protective, this post might be what you’re searching for.

People who care about you tend to be protective of you. That’s how loyalty and affection work. It’s just a part of the human condition to want the people you love to be safe, healthy, and happy. If you don’t want that for them, you can’t truly say that you care. 

It’s possible that there’s a guy in your life who is being protective of you. He might be a brother, a cousin, a friend, or a lover. If you’re paying attention, you’ll begin to see the signs that he’s looking out for you.

How to Tell if a Guy is Being Protective, According to a Former Therapist

First of all, there’s a big difference between being protective and being over-protective. Someone who is over-protective acts as if you can’t make good choices on your own.

They want to put you in bubble wrap and keep you away from the world. They want you dependent on them, which isn’t healthy. But someone who is being protective just cares about you and wants you to be safe. 

As I’m getting older, I’m really learning unconditional love and loyalty are extremely important.

~Bindi Irwin

Why listen to me? I’m Crystal Jackson and I was a master’s level licensed therapist. I worked with couples and individuals and specialized in trauma recovery and empowerment. I now write content about relationships, self-improvement and psychology. My work has been featured on large publications such as Elite Daily, Your Tango, Positively Positive, Mamamia, and The Good Men Project.

He Makes Sure You Get Home Safe

One of the clearest signs a guy is being protective is he will make sure you get home safe. He’ll want you to text him when you get there.

This is true whether you’re out with him or out with friends or even a date. He’ll want to know that you’re home so that he doesn’t worry about you. 

This becomes over-protective when he expects to know about all of your comings and goings at all times. That’s not healthy or safe for you.

But a man who simply wants to make sure that you returned from your outing and you’re okay is one who just cares. There aren’t strings attached or judgments made. 

He Takes Care of You When You’re Sick

Another sign of a guy being protective of you is that he takes care of you when you’re sick.

He might not come to your house and hold your hair back when you vomit, but he might stop and pick up what you need from the store, drop off soup, or otherwise try to help you feel better.

He’ll check on you while you’re sick to see if you need anything or if you’re feeling better. He hates the idea of you in pain, so he’ll follow up until he knows you’re well again. 

He Defends You to Others

A man who cares about you will be quick to defend you to others. He won’t let someone talk down to you or talk bad about you when you’re not there. He comes to your defense even if you’ll never know about it.

He’s protective of the way other people think of you. He might even wade into online interactions to make sure you know he has your back. 

Affection is responsible for nine-tenths of whatever solid and durable happiness there is in our lives.

~C. S. Lewis

He’s Suspicious of New Men in Your Life

If he gets suspicious about new men in your life, he might simply be protective of you. He might want to vet these men for himself — particularly if something you’ve said has raised a red flag for him.

An overprotective man will think he has the right to tell you who you can spend time with, but a protective man will just want to make sure that you’re safe and treated right.

He might even want to meet the people you date. He doesn’t want to interrogate them as much as he wants to make sure they pass the vibe check.

If he’s your partner, he might want to meet new male friends for the same reason. It’s not a matter of jealousy. He just wants to make sure that the people in your life treat you right. 

happy couple hugging
Foto de Candice Picard en Unsplash

He Tells You That You Deserve the Best

A guy who is being protective of you will tell you that you deserve the very best. He’ll get angry on your behalf if someone hurts you, and he’s the first to tell you that you deserve better than you’ve been treated in the past.

He genuinely thinks the best of you, and he’ll want you to think that way about yourself, too. He’s going to hype you up until you believe it. The last thing he wants is to see you settle for friends or lovers who don’t treat you well. 

In fact, if there’s an ex who wronged you that he can’t stand, it could be because the thought of you being hurt is so distasteful to him that he’s added this person to his forever list of people he doesn’t like.

When he comes up in conversation, his disgust is self-evident. He will automatically approve of anyone who is good for you and treats you well, but he might just make an enemy of anyone who doesn’t treat you right. 

He Walks You to Your Car

One of the main signs a guy is being protective is when he walks you to your car. Let’s be real: The world isn’t safe for women — particularly at night and in parking lots. The fact that he makes sure you get to your vehicle safely or to your public transportation without incident is a way of showing that he cares.

He’s being protective of you to make sure that you don’t have to do that long walk with your keys clutched in your fingers ready to start stabbing if necessary. He’s got your back, and you know it. 

This doesn’t mean that he doesn’t think you can take care of yourself. Rather, he’s adding an extra layer of protection with strength in numbers.

You might be able to fully handle anything that comes your way, but he still wants to make sure you get where you’re going for his own peace of mind. 

Walking with a friend in the dark is better than walking alone in the light.

~Helen Keller

He Supports Your Dreams

Another protective gesture that you might overlook is when he enthusiastically supports your dreams. A guy who is being protective of you will want to see you succeed.

Supporting your goals and cheering on your successes is how he shows you that he cares. 

This might not seem protective, but it is. He doesn’t want you to fail. He wants to cheer you on. If you don’t reach your dreams, he’ll be there to help you deal with your feelings.

If you do, he’s going to be there to let you know that he believed in you all along. Either way, this is a protective gesture you might not notice if you aren’t paying attention. 

He Encourages You to Be Independent

Another way that a guy will be protective of you is to encourage your independence. He might show you how to change a tire or add oil to your car.

He might help you figure out a skill set that you don’t yet have so that you won’t be dependent on anyone else to get things done.

While he has no problem at all helping you out when needed, he wants you to be independent because he cares about you.

An overprotective guy won’t do this. He wants you to be dependent on him. He doesn’t want you to be able to do things yourself. That’s the difference between them.

The overprotective man isn’t thinking of what’s in your best interest, only his. The protective man cares enough to help you be as independent as possible. 

He Looks After the People You Love, Too

Another sweet gesture you’ll notice when a guy is being protective of you happens when he looks after the people you love, too. When he gets protective on behalf of your friends, you’ll know that it’s another way to show he cares about you.

This is true affection and loyalty. It’s why he might show up with a truck to help your best friend move even though his affection is for you and not for your friend. He cares enough to want to help out if he can. 

Never regret anything you have done with a sincere affection; nothing is lost that is born of the heart.

~Basil Rathbone

He Tries Not to Burden You with His Problems

Another way that a guy might try to protect you is by hiding his problems from you. He might not confide in you about his struggles because he doesn’t want to add to your stress.

Of course, this is a misguided form of protection. If you care about him, you’ll want to be there for him just like he’s there for you. 

Still, his attempt to minimize his struggles can be a way of protecting you. It’s not the best way to do it, but you might have to be the one to tell him that.

Let him know that the friendship or romantic relationship needs to be a two-way street of support. It’s possible that he hasn’t experienced this in the past and just doesn’t realize that he gets your support, too. 

He’s Your Shoulder to Cry On

A guy who is being protective will want to be the shoulder you cry on. He’ll want to be the one you call when things go wrong — or when they go right.

He just wants to be there to support you. He’ll give you a safe space where you won’t have to be strong. You can cry it out and know that he’s not judging you for it. 

The Protective Man: A Conclusion

It’s important to appreciate when a man is being protective of you as long as it’s not crossing the line or your boundaries into being overprotective.

It shows that he cares and that he wants for you to be safe, healthy, and happy. It’s a mark of affection, loyalty, and even love for him to do what he can to look out for your well-being. 

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