I’ve learnt some lessons the hard way in the school of love so you don’t have to. Here are my seven essential relationship tests to see if he’s going to last the distance, might be suitable for marriage, or if he’s a total douche bag.

couples hands

1. How He Treats Strangers

How your man treats strangers, from homeless people to waitstaff, is telling. Does he look waiters and bus drivers in the eye and genuinely thank people, or does he ignore them? This shows if he generally respects others or feels he can dismiss him. You might also want to see how he treats his mom, as it shows how he may treat you one day.

2. How He Treats You After Sex

If you’re both just interested in sex, then this doesn’t apply… but if you’re interested in more, make sure to pay attention. He might be the perfect gentleman as he pursues you, but if he leaves soon after the condom comes off, then he’s only after one thing. Whether it’s for small talk, or a movie, or breakfast – a guy that sticks around after sex is over is interested in getting to know you more.

couple making out on floor

3. Saying Sorry

If he blames everything on you when you fight, then he’s a total douche. We all mess up – and sometimes your fight will be his fault. It’s important that he recognizes what he did and apologizes for it. If he genuinely says he’s sorry, he’s a keeper.

4. How He Travels

Any type of travel, especially overseas, shows you how your partner handles stress. It’s a perfect messy pressure cooker of being hangry, having jet lag, getting lost, not speaking the language, and being in an unfamiliar routine. How your partner handles these situations is telling of how stressful events play out in his life. Travel is super stressful, but so is life when it throws you a curve ball.

couple on holidays

5. How He Helps When You’re Sick

My first work mentor gave me some invaluable advice about selecting a good partner. She said she fell in love and married for all the wrong reasons. She was impressed by her husband-to-be’s charm, flashy car, extravagant lifestyle, and good looks. Meanwhile, one of her friends had married a ‘boring’ accountant. She couldn’t understand why, until her friend was diagnosed with breast cancer. He rose to the occasion to take care of her needs. He took over cooking dinner, shopping, and looking after their two small children. He took care of everything, while she had the space and time to get better. Total keeper. Years later, my mentor’s husband ran off with her ‘best’ friend. Total douche.

6. Plan a Party Together

As a previous event planner, I found that something always goes wrong in every event, no matter how much planning you do. It’s important to be able to work together and handle the stress along the way. After all, weddings are just one huge party with the added bonus of fighting with your relatives and dealing with unrealistic expectations. Throw a party, no matter what the occasion, to see how he helps out and handles stress. My workmate organized her whole wedding, including buying $500 worth of alcohol, by herself. If a guy isn’t there to help you carry a few bottles of wine and beer to the car, he won’t be there to help you with bigger events either.

birthday cake

7. How He Saves or Spends Money

His attitude towards money is telling, and really important for how he’ll budget later in life. So many arguments (and divorces) revolve around money. At some point in your life, you might want to save for an overseas holiday, a deposit for a house, or to cover you your income while starting a family. Even if you go double-dutch while dating, see if he’s spending wisely or making big impulse buys – and if he’s willing to spend a little to treat you as well. Even if you’re splitting dates, if he earns twice as much as you but can’t find ten dollars to pay for take out pizza, he’s a douche.