In the beginning of a relationship, it can be very tempting to ignore subtle or obvious traits that send the proverbial red flag up. Don’t ignore it, don’t push the red flag out of your face and doubt your instincts. Red flags of toxic-ness is not something you see a year or two years down the road, it’s right there at the very beginning. Here is a list of toxic-red flags that should make anyone think twice before continuing a relationship.
1.) Communication is the key to any relationship and probably the most difficult, especially as the years go by and the relationship meets a level of comfort. Communication is paramount when things are not going well and issues enter the relationship. When someone pulls the silent treatment in a relationship, instead of telling the other person they need time to think, or just shuts up all together, is a large toxic red flag. The silent treatment is a signal that the individual lacks the social maturity to deal with situations. These people are very manipulative in the manner in which they communicate.
2.) Be mindful of the way they talk to you and other people. If they are talking down to someone else and being unsupportive, they will do that in all their relationships. Then the individual is always right and you are always wrong. When you are stepping on eggshells around them you have entered a space where your feet are going to get cut.
3.) If they are not willing to let loose and try things out where the public can see them. The ability to be able to do this in the public eye shows that they have the ability to be vulnerable. If he or she says no to public displays of affection, if holding hands and light kissing gives them the heebie- jeebies it would be wise to rethink the relationship. Vulnerability is not the act of being weak or submissive. It is the ability to be yourself. Vulnerability involves uncertainty, risk, and emotional exposure. To know you are loved for who you are and have the ability to perceive someone else in vulnerability and love them as they are is one of life’s most fulfilling experiences. You deserve nothing less.
4.) Some people use humor to communicate a less than stellar message they would not or feel uncomfortable to share. It is one thing to laugh at an awkward situation, however it is another beast altogether when someone makes a joke about someone else’s looks, living circumstances, race, or education. If the individual claims they are just teasing, it does not justify it. This behavior will enter the relationship and the joke could be on you.
5.) The easiest red flag in the book to identify is when an individual starts asking you to change your personality. Don’t make apologies for who you are. If you want to wear combat boots and a tiara they will love you just the same. Love yourself, don’t change for someone else.
Entering a relationship can be thrilling, however exiting relationships can be miserable. Yet, it doesn’t have to be that way, there is no reason for bitterness and anger to signal an end to anything. Remember, dating is a way to see if your compatible with another person, it’s not a life time commitment.
Look for the individual who can sit and listen to another human being. Look for the human being who will not try to fix the your problem but stands and shows his or her support. Hunt for the truly unique individual can sit down with another, share traits of vulnerability and still love him or her the way they are. Have the courage to settle for nothing less.
This article was written by Laurell Morse, a writer for dusk magazine.