Do you know the dating red flags? With lockdown limbo putting the pursuit of romance on pause over the past few months, the figurative cobwebs are finally being blown off dating apps and day planners. As virtual dates are beginning to be replaced by socially-distant drinks, there’s no better time than now to re-familiarize yourself with the 10 dating red flags to keep an eye out for.
1. They give away too little…or too much
Sure, a little mystery never hurt anyone, but there’s a big difference between someone who takes a while to open up and one who won’t tell you their last name. Total secrecy could be a sign of something more sinister, so tread carefully when they give you nothing. On the flip side, giving too much too fast could also be a warning sign. If they’re openly picking children’s names or paint colors on the first date, they may be more interested in filling a hole in their life than they are in you as a person.
2. Speaking badly of their ex
Bad breakups are part of life, but there’s rarely such a thing as a wholly ‘crazy ex’. What’s more likely is two people who weren’t right for each other trying to force something that wasn’t meant to be. There are always two sides to every story and if they’re too busy telling tales of their ex to focus on getting to know you, they’re not worth your time or energy.
3. Game playing
Life’s too short to count the minutes before hitting send on a reply or planning to provoke your new partner with a strategically posted Insta story. If this is the behavior they prefer to partake in, then it’s time to say game over. This is one of the biggest dating red flags to look out for.
4. Rudeness to others
You learn the most about people not by how they treat you, but those around you. No matter what your type is, showing kindness to others is the baseline for being a decent human being, so if they’re snapping at waiters, dismissive of everyone else’s feelings, or don’t even give a courteous hello to an Uber driver, they are not someone to fantasize a future with.
5. They don’t like dogs
Is there anything else to say about this one..?
6. They show up hungover
We’re all guilty of hitting it a bit too hard the night before, but if they’re showing up to your first date hungover (or worse, drunk), they can’t actually care too much about your first impression – and if they don’t care, why should you? Spending that time having brunch with your friends would be a hell of a lot more fun than watching someone try to remember your favorite film whilst really just silently lusting for their sofa.
7. Core values don’t align
We all have something to learn from those who think differently to us, and who doesn’t love a bit of a debate over dinner, but having different views on an artist is a completely different thing to not agreeing on the necessity of social care. If your deepest cores aren’t aligned, it’s rare that a relationship can, or even should, blossom.
One of the more dangerous red flags to be wary of, gaslighting can be a signifier of more disturbing behavior to come. If you feel someone is trying to trivialize your feelings, deliberately confuse you, or make you second-guess your own recollections, it’s time to put as much distance between you and them as possible.
9. They isolate you
Similarly, if the person you are seeing is trying to put distance between you and your loved ones, they are not the one for you. Remember, one person cannot (and should not) be everything to another, so don’t label this behavior as romantic, when it’s really just irrational.
10. A gut feeling
Saving the most serious for last, if you have that unexplainable icky feeling in your stomach or nagging voice in your head, no matter how quiet, it’s time to get out. In these situations, forget social etiquette; you don’t owe anyone anything at the compromise of your own safety and comfort, and you certainly shouldn’t ever feel ashamed for simply following your gut.
By Jordan Evans