Have you ever recognized red flags at the beginning of dating someone, but then chosen to go ahead anyway? Have you realized later on that you should have heeded those warning signs?
Why do we ignore those red flags?
I think there are many reasons. We want to be loved, and many of us have made the choice to ignore the danger signals because we want someone special in our life. We have a tendency when we first start dating someone to see all the positive traits and to minimize the negative traits. We tend to see all our similarities and to discount significant differences in values, life vision etc.
Many people want to be part of a couple. Perhaps they believe there is a social stigma about being single. Perhaps their couple friends no longer invite them, or they feel like the odd person out. Being part of a couple may open social doors that might otherwise be closed.
We may ignore red flags because we are lonely – and even an unsuitable partner is better than no partner at all.
Sometimes people ignore the red flags because they don’t want to end the relationship for fear of hurting another’s feelings, or not being “nice.”
And if you’re coming from a place of scarcity thinking, you may believe that if you let this one go, there may not be another one, so you have to settle for what you have.
You may choose to ignore the red flags because of the financial or emotional security you feel with a person…
Maybe you ignore the red flags because of a great sexual connection.
Sometimes you tolerate the red flags simply because they are so familiar.
There are many reasons why we choose to go ahead even though we see some danger signs at the beginning.
Unfortunately, later on, these red flags will likely become deal-breakers, and will make a relationship unsustainable. Often with a breakup there is disappointment and heartache.
How can you do things differently? For one thing you need to balance your head with your heart when dating. Take the time to be aware, instead of getting caught up in the excitement of a new potential partner. Talk to your friends and family and pay attention to any concerns they may have. Take your time… Slow things down. Be aware of their behaviours. Listen to your inner wisdom.
Next week I’ll talk about some common red flags and how they are different from minor annoyances!
Have you been aware of red flags and proceeded anyway? What were your reasons? I’d love to hear from you!