RELATIONSHIP RED FLAGS; WHAT ARE THEY?
A relationship red flag is a warning sign that could indicate a challenge in the future. Relationship red flags can reveal themselves through a negative sign or action, a verbal or physical cue, or a personality flaw and they can be dangerous if not spotted early. Red flags in the early stages of a relationship can be subtle or obvious. It’s important to take note of red flags before the relationship goes too far. Deal breakers on the other hand are behaviours, values, and/or characteristics of a potential long term partner that you fundamentally disagree with. Deal breakers are useful tools to prevent potential unhealthy behaviours, unbalanced relationship roles, or potentially dangerous situations in your relationship. A few examples of red flags are;
1. PARTNERS THAT HAVE A HARD TIME APOLOGIZING
This might seem as “not being a big deal” but trust me depending on the partner, it is. Apologizing is a great way to hold accountability and helps in reconciliation. If your partner never admits to their wrong or apologizes for something they blatantly did, then this may be a red flag. I mean, how can the two of you grow if one refuses to admit their flaws? Partners with this trait could also gaslight – they make you feel guilty regardless of whether you are at fault or not. To maintain a healthy relationship, you have a responsibility to own up and apologize when you screw up or hurt their feeling.
2. THEY HAVE YOU SECOND-GUESSING THEIR FEELINGS TOWARDS YOU
Games are not cool, especially when you are in a relationship. It should be obvious that your partner is into you, or else what is the point of being in a relationship? Of course, they do not have to bring you flowers or goodies every day, but you should not have to doubt the love they have for you. They should be willing to show you how much they care about you. I mean Nigeria is hard enough and the least we deserve is decent relationships!
3. THEY ALWAYS CRITICIZE YOU
The people closest to you should build you up, not break you down. You deserve to date someone who treats you like royalty. Criticizing could be a good thing if done properly and minimally. But being overly critical while not commending? If your partner always scrutinizes how you look, speak or behave without making any compliments then maybe he/she will never be satisfied and perhaps it is better to just end things before they get too difficult or outright mean. A relationship should not make you question your self-worth.
4. THEY HAVE SOMETHING TO HIDE
Every partner should have the right to privacy. This varies across relationships but generally, it’s okay for your partner to have private conversations with other people, to have friends of their own and you shouldn’t have to read their messages. With that said, trust is an important ingredient for a long-lasting relationship. A partner being overly possessive of their phone, never having conversations in front of you or being too dodgy may be a red flag. Again, this point is very subjective.
5. THEY ARE STILL OBSESSED WITH THEIR EX
LOL, for all I care you might be the rebound! If your partner still has pictures of their ex on their phone, looks at their social media profiles frequently, always makes the ex the topic of the conversations, claim to be friends with the ex or talks to them excessively, then, you might need to have a very serious conversation. Being a rebound is not fun, it literally means you are the substitute and your partner is still fixated on their ex. It also means the other person is likely to move on quickly without developing deep feelings for you, either intentionally or because they are not ready, potentially leaving you heartbroken.
In conclusion, when you encounter red flags in your relationship, it is a good time to pause and reflect. They could be signs of narcissism, aggression or even abusive behaviour. By becoming aware of some common red flags, you can avoid getting involved in a toxic relationship or being served breakfast.