Dating Red Flags
They say you should never regret your life experiences. But truth be told, I have dated guys in my life who have added zero value to it. In fact, they took away from it. Here are some major dating red flags and warning signs I’ve learnt that you should pay attention to, so you don’t make the mistakes I did.
1. He is unfaithful when you meet him
I know this seems obvious, but hear me out. Infidelity can take many forms. Some are obvious, others can be more discreet and indirect. Whatever form it takes, infidelity violates a fundamental tenet of a relationship—trust.
If someone doesn’t value trust when it comes to their current partner, there’s a high chance he’ll do the same thing to you eventually. As the saying goes, “How you found them may end up being how you leave them.”
In my case, I didn’t realise the man in question was being unfaithful. I’d been assigned to work in a new city and my company had put me up in a hotel. I met M in the lobby and after chatting for a while, he asked me to join him for dinner. I didn’t know anyone in the city and thought that it’d be nice to have company for dinner, so I said yes.
After a series of dinner dates and flirtatious texts, he casually mentioned he had a girlfriend back in Italy. This was a huge red flag, since he didn’t think what he was doing was wrong, but instead perfectly acceptable.
He told me it was his business that he had a girlfriend and chose to date other women too, and insisted that it was none of my concern. Seeing as I was the other woman he was dating, I was extremely concerned, but he made me feel stupid and nosy for feeling that way.
Looking back, he made me question myself when I should have put him in his place and called him out for what he was: A slimy cheater who was justifying his bad behaviour because he was in a long-distance relationship.
2. He is stingy
If I wasn’t trying to move on from my ex, I probably wouldn’t have dated this guy. But I was a bit heartbroken, so when this guy asked me out on a date, I said yes to forget my pain. I didn’t check if he was worth dating.
Alarm bells should have rung when he insisted that we split the bill, even on the first date. I don’t expect men to always cover the bill, quite the opposite. Nevertheless, I think on a first date, it’s nice to be courted. The early stages of dating are when you should be making the most effort, after all.
This guy had no issue spending copious amounts of money on himself. But on the dates that followed, he never for a second thought to spend any of any on me, not even on something like ice cream.
I truly believe that in order to receive, we must give first. And if we are stingy with our time and wealth, others around us will follow suit and treat us accordingly.
3. He has insecurities and takes them out on you
Mr Stingy also had a poor command of English, which I had no issues with, besides the fact that he would become very angry when I didn’t understand him.
He acted as though I was trying to make him feel stupid. I wasn’t; I genuinely didn’t understand him and needed him to repeat what he was saying.
One day, after catching myself feeling nervous about asking him to repeat himself again, I stood up, wished him good luck in life, and never called him again.
Everyone has insecurities but people deal with them in different ways. I stay clear of people who project their insecurities onto me and make it my problem.
We can’t control the cards that life deals us but we can control how we react to them. I would prefer to date someone who reacts to life’s challenges positively.
4. He is a project
I know many people, myself included, who get caught up with ‘project guys’. A project guy has so much potential. All he needs is a little guidance, help, money, time, love… insert anything that involves you.
A project guy is a challenge that I often used to take on because it made me feel good. I felt like I was helping and making the world a better place.
Nevertheless, I have a truth bomb for you here. A relationship is meant to be give and take. If you are giving and giving in order to fix this guy up so he becomes a better human being, guess whose growth and needs are going to get neglected?
If you have managed to get your life or are on track to getting your life together, there’s no reason why someone should expect you to do it for them.
Project guys are now a deal-breaker for me as they take up one of my most valuable resources, time. Time I could be spending growing and exploring the world with a man who isn’t a leech.
5. He is hot and cold
Romantic comedies are often unrealistic. But the 2009 rom-com, He’s Just Not That Into You, which was based on a self-help book, got it right.
I met a French dude who was very charming and said all the right things, but was very hot and cold. One minute he wanted to spend every second with me, the next I didn’t hear from him for a week.
It was a complete waste of my time and energy, I can’t get either of those 2 things back. I decided to cut him off after we had agreed to a cooked meal and I spent the whole week sourcing ingredients and feeling really excited, only to hear from him 3 weeks later as though the plan never existed.
I decided to refrain from replying to his texts to let him taste his own medicine, and managed to refrain indefinitely.
When a man is into you, nothing and no one can get in his way. When he isn’t into you, nothing and no one can make him go your way. Resist the urge to make excuses for him. It’s not unreasonable to want to hear from someone you are dating once a day or, at the very least, every few days.
There are 24 hours and 1,440 minutes in a day. If he can’t find the time to pick up the phone and spare 1 minute texting you, he’s not worth it.
I’ve Learnt To Look Out For These Dating Red Flags & Warning Signs
If someone is a lot of effort and energy at the beginning of a relationship, imagine how much hard work it will be after all the romance has settled. So ladies, take note of these dating red flags. Once you notice them, it’s time to exit the chat, and spend your time and energy on someone more deserving instead.