The hardest thing sometimes in fledgling relationships is seeing red flags. And even harder than seeing the red flags are listening to them, and walking away from them when it’s smart to do so.
Historically, I have had a terrible time with part two of the above statement. I can see red flags all day, sometimes from a mile away, but I am a master at justification. This problem usually rears its ugly head with the emotionally unavailable… those signs are ALWAYS there, yet, do I listen? Nope. Neeewwwp.
On the flip side, are red flags always deal breakers? Do they have to be? Or are they things that one should simply be wary of and use as a warning to proceed with caution? After all, no one is perfect, and when you’re dating in your late 20s – early 30s, it’s really hard to find someone without SOME baggage, amirite?
Here’s the other tough part with red flags, and I know this isn’t something that only I have trouble with (lookin at you, B) – how do we filter out the REALLY bad red flags, the ones we should listen to and/or run away from, before we are emotionally invested in someone? Since these traits don’t always pop up in the first week or two of dating, how do we shield ourselves, while still being open enough to get to know someone? This shit is damn near impossible, people. Or maybe I’m bad at humaning, whatever. But that’s really the ultimate question… how do I know someone’s red flag is a deal breaker, and how do I abort mission before my own feelings are involved?
I don’t have the answers to this, obviously, but one thing I have learned is that people will generally tell you who they are, sometimes it’s just up to us to listen. When a guy says “I don’t have a girlfriend because I’m an asshole,” there’s a really good chance that said guy is, in fact, an asshole. Girls are just notoriously bad for hearing what we want to hear, or making excuses to make a square peg fit in a round hole. Oh well. C’est la vie.
Until next time,