Why red flags in dating are worse than you think
Updated: Sep 27
So you finally met someone that you really like, and joyfully enough, it is a mutual appreciation. You’ve been searching so long for a person who is as great as them and you feel like you’re living a dream. You’re so happy that you can feel proud to introduce this date to your family and friends and no longer need to deal with being single. There’s only one issue. This person has raised a few red flags that you know in your heart are a problem but you overlook them because you know how difficult it was to have finally found the one you were looking for. Discovering red flags in dating is a bummer. It ruins your excitement and hopes for a relationship that you were yearning for since you started dating. Yet, they are a blessing in disguise because they can warn you about potential serious issues with the person you are developing a relationship with and can prevent you from staying with someone that not only can cause you much grief in the future, but can actually destroy your peace of mind and sense of normalcy on the long run. In some rare cases, but not impossible, they may even become a real physical or emotional danger to you.
As scary as this may sound, you shouldn’t fear because if you trust your instincts, you most probably will never end up actually staying with someone who will truly be problematic in your life. Why? Would you agree to say that most people simply cannot hide their true colors for long? Yes, a person who has significant issues or personality problems can act on their best behavior the first few dates but it is quite common and likely that at some point in the dating process, and usually quite early on, they will inevitably say or do things that will raise an alarm or red flag in your mind. If you continue meeting with this person, it won’t be because you just had no clue that they were capable of such words or behavior but because you CHOSE to ignore the red flags and move on. Guess what, you are most certainly not to blame because anyone who ever really liked someone has a hard time accepting disappointment and can develop denial feelings when discovering red flags because we don’t want to be single again and especially don’t want to lose this person who has the unique qualities that we were searching for all along.
One of the hardest things to do in relationships is to break up. It’s no coincidence that entire books, websites, articles, courses, movies and more have been produced to explain how to prevent breakups, how to get back an ex, or how to recover emotionally from a breakup. Yet, even if it might feel like an insurmountable loss, sometimes cutting off any link to a certain partner can be the safest and best decision to make for your well-being. There are many people who stay in difficult relationships, and in some unfortunate cases even abusive ones due to letting go of the red flags that appeared along the way.
Nobody can be blamed for wanting to pursue what may seem like a dream relationship or a person who seems to be ideal to us, but thankfully we all have a strong sense of intuition and if we follow it, as heartbreaking as it may be, it can save us a lot of grief in the future. It often takes time and distance to realize that we took the right decision to leave a damaging relationship but in the long run, it will be cause for celebration. Did you ever think back of someone you dated in the past and wonder how did you ever tolerate their actions? Years later you feel relief that it didn’t work out but in the moment, it felt impossible to even consider ending things with them. When we are dating someone, there are too many emotions involved to have real clarity. It is only after a long enough period of separation from that person that we can see the situation clearly. So next time you meet someone who is truly to your liking but keeps raising some serious red flags, remember that as overwhelmingly hurtful as it may be for you to walk away, your future self will thank you for the rest of your life.
Annie Chana Newman