I’ve done my fair share of dating in my adult life. Frequently when I tell stories of my dates, my happily in-relationship friends suggest I should put my experiences into a book.
Alas, I’m short on publishing contracts just now. Meaning, you, my lucky blog audience, will have the opportunity to enjoy the occasional story of dating and relationships in a new, irregularly-occurring series for my blog, entitled “Red flags and deal breakers.”
I’m not going to be sharing the obvious red flags.
When you’re on a first date and the guy you’re with starts raving about his best (female) friend who he also sleeps with, but it’s OK because he’s friends with her boyfriend… that’s a very huge potential red flag. Even when he tells you that it’s totally fine because now she’s basically like “a Ken doll” to him (i.e. sexless). (For some reason that didn’t comfort me.) No matter what your take is on monogamy, that guy has some emotional hang ups that you may want to avoid.
When you’re on a first date at the ancient age of 29 with a guy who edited his profile photos maybe a little more than the average person to make himself seem attractive and tall, and he tells you that you better think about having children soon or they’ll all have birth defects. That’s probably a red flag.
When you text a guy that you grabbed a spot at the bar, and he texts back that he’s just looking for parking, shows up 20 minutes later, then rants about his ex-wife for a solid 15 minutes… that’s a red flag. (Gentle reader, there is ample parking available. He was just SUPER late. And as far as I could tell, his ex-wife’s biggest sin was that she smoked… which he probably knew before they were married.)
Those are obvious warning signs in a relationship. But what about the more subtle elements? The vitriol with which the last example ranted about his ex was a huge red “LAST DATE” in the sky. But even if he’d done so calmly and rationally, blaming one person for the demise of a relationship which takes two is usually a bad sign.
And that, my dear friends, is what I’ll be exploring on and off in this series as the mood strikes me. Often times there’s an obvious red flag we should’ve noticed. But sometimes wrapped in that is subtle warnings that, if we can learn to pay attention to them now, we can avoid falling prey to them later.