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Relationship Red Flags

As if life isn’t challenging enough, add dating to the equation, and it can feel impossible, especially in the swipe-right culture.

Let’s say that with so much “candy” in the dating store to choose from, how can anyone feel secure?

It would be best never to ignore these red flags—whether newly dating or in an established relationship.

1. An inability to say, “I am sorry.”

If someone cannot apologize for apparent wrongdoing, this shows me they lack respect or empathy toward others. They are not concerned about how their actions have affected you and are not willing to feel any remorse, which is a horrible quality, and this shows me a lack of accountability.

2. They lack accountability.

So, if they are not sorry, they won’t be accountable for anything they say or do. Ask them about their part in the demise of their marriage or a recent breakup. If they share a story where they are the victim and do not include their role in the story…they are showing you how they are not accountable for their piece—in anything that goes wrong.

We all know it takes two for things to work and to break; it is when we can see our part in things and hold ourselves accountable that we can learn the lessons we are meant to understand and go on to the next level of life—with our experiences driving us to make better choices.

If there is no accountability, the person will repeatedly continue to make the same choices. Look at their past relationships/patterns—they will be quite telling.

3. They have friends who are less than desirable.

As the proverb goes, “A man is known by the company he keeps—a person tends to be very similar in attitude, character, ability, or personality to the people with whom they associate or spend time.”

4. Lack of substance and depth.

If you are looking for emotional depth, stimulating conversation, conflict resolution, growth, and a deeper connection, ensure you are conscious of where this person lives.

Are they, on the surface, shallow, unable to discuss or work through conflict? Do they run away at the first sign of trouble? How is their relationship with others? How do they parent? This is important to recognize because it will tell how they appear in your relationship.

5. Immaturity and crude humor.

Maybe his boyish charm or her little girl behaviors are cute initially, but immaturity can wreak havoc on a relationship over time.

How do they handle demanding situations? Do they manage conflict maturely? Do they pick fights and have a need always to be right? Do they run away when things get honest or brutal?

6. Extensive pornography use.

This is for real. Some—and I mean some—pornography use is regular for men (and women), not that we must like it, or maybe you do, but the reality is that most men have watched porn, and some still do. However, like anything else, moderation is key. If your significant other is looking at porn multiple times a day or if you notice odd behaviors, be vigilant.

If not done in moderation, this objectifying behavior could be a problem that you should be aware of. Pornography addiction is real and just as damaging as any other addiction, if not worse.

7. An inability to connect or commit.

Unfortunately, we like to ignore the warning signs, the big bright red flags that are on fire, and we tell ourselves that if we just do enough and are perfect, if we try harder, he will come around. You know, deep down, this is not valid. This is a recipe for disaster, emotional exhaustion, and heartbreak. If you recognize the phases of emotional unavailability, avoidant behavior, and commitment phobia early on, you will save yourself incredible energy and time. Eyes wide open!

8. They are emotionally stunted.

To me, growth is everything—and it should be important to everyone! If you do not grow as a person, especially as a couple, this leads to stagnation. Complacency versus contentment—these are two different things. You can be content and still grow together and grow separately.

Complacency leads to dissatisfaction, which can destroy a relationship on many levels. Keep your eyes open to people who are afraid of change, don’t make an effort to move the relationship forward, and shy away from any conversations discussing the future.

There are many more red flags to look out for, but the above are usually the most in-your-face flags you need to be wary of and address.

People with an intense sense of self-worth and esteem can recognize these behaviors quickly and, most of the time, can walk away without experiencing any emotional damage to their psyche. However, those who struggle with codependency or self-esteem issues have a much harder time accepting the flags that they see and an even harder time walking away.

If you struggle with codependency or self-esteem issues, then you are at risk of accepting the behaviors above and even adopting them as the issues that you need to fix. Coaching can help you build your self-worth, change your perspective, and walk away from those who are not right for you.


Protect yourself and arm yourself with so much self-love that you repel these behaviors.

Walk away, hold your head high, and know that you deserve so much more!

AUTHOR: AVESHA PARKER, a certified Spiritual, Life, and Wellness Coach.


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