photo: iStock/Marissa Pina
Love is patient, love is kind, and, at times, blind. One second you’re getting to know a guy, next thing you know you’re in love and in a relationship, until it finally dawns on you: Wait a second, this dude is kind of a machista. 
“A machista is a man who demonstrates negative masculine qualities,” says human behavior expert, relationship expert, and psychotherapist Dr. Patrick Wanis. “He is primarily seen as violent, aggressive, highly competitive, and shows irrational behavior as well as an attitude of superiority and dominance towards women and even children.”

“He believes men are superior and women exist to serve them, runs the home and the relationship, and that you’re there to please and service him. And, you’re replaceable if he gets tired of you, and that you’re his property,” says dating and relationship coach Rosalind Sedacca

Related From Vivala: What My Non-Machista Dominican Dad Taught Me About Love 

Being with a machista can set you up for being in a relationship that’s unhealthy and abusive.

“You’re never going to have the freedom to fully express yourself,” says Wanis, “You’re going to be walking around with fear and the extreme form of machista often leads to domestic violence and abuse."

Problem is, if you’re too caught up in the relationship, it might be hard to see the red flags. Here are a few signs you’re dating a machista. 

1. He doesn’t like when you socialize or hang out with your friends. If he’s throwing a fit every time you plan to get together with friends, that’s a problem. “He’s controlling and feels he has a right to dominate your activities,” says Sedacca. “He's very insecure and feels control is the only way to 'keep you.'” 

2. He’s constantly accusing you of cheating. A man who is constantly accusing you of cheating is either really insecure and afraid of losing you or might just be cheating himself.  “He’s probably projecting. Projecting means 'I’m accusing you of doing something I’m actually doing, which I refuse to accept about myself',” says Wanis. “he’s actually accusing you of cheating so he doesn’t think about his own cheating or so that he can justify to himself the fact that he is cheating.”

3. He tries to control how you look and dress. It might come out as protective, but a man who tries to control how you dress, do your hair and makeup, or even carry yourself, has serious control issues. “He’s extremely insecure and therefore jealous and that’s why he’s trying to control you,” says Wanis. “He’s afraid if you look hot and sexy that other men are going to be looking at you and that you might go away with them.”

4. He blames you for every argument. Watch out for a dude who turns the tables on you during every single argument. “If your man is always blaming you for every argument, it means first that he’s playing the victim,” says Wanis. “Second, it means that he refuses to take responsibility for his actions and the role he plays in your relationship.” It’s also a dangerous way of manipulating you into staying in the relationship. “Blaming is a mind-game he plays and an excuse for his abusive behavior,” says Sedacca. 

5. He expects you to be the one to always clean and cook. This could be his way of letting you know what he believes your “role” in this relationship should be. That you are not his equal but his property. “It’s a way of demeaning you and keeping you in your “place” says Sedacca. 

6. He can’t handle if you make more money than him: “There are men today who feel threatened by women who are making more money and have more career success,” says Wanis. “It means that men are also being challenged today to redefine themselves.” With that said, him not being comfortable with you making more money is a sign of his own insecurities.