Are you ignoring red flags in your relationship?
Unfortunately, this isn’t uncommon. When we fall in love with someone, we get excited about the future. We don’t want to think that it might not work out. The wish that this person is the one takes often takes precedence over our gut instincts that scream otherwise. We are especially vulnerable when we really desire a partnership and the end forever to single life.
Still, for the sake of staying true to yourself and securing a healthy relationship, it is important to pay attention to those warning signs.
Be intentional and aware. After all, you want a relationship that is going to meet your needs and support a growing connection with someone who shares your values and desire for a sound future together.
Of course, you will have to make compromises in any relationship. Nevertheless, remember that you need to trust your gut if things don’t feel right.
It is better to pay attention to relationship red flags and make a change now than to stick with a potential partner and become more deeply involved with the wrong person. Your time and energy are precious.
Here are seven giant red flags that you should not ignore:
1. You Don’t Respect Each Other’s Value Systems
It is critical that you each honor each other’s core values. As you enter a new relationship, pay attention to what matters to you most. Which discrepancies bother you or are considered deal breakers? Consider how you both feel about the following:
Of course, opposites can attract. You certainly don’t have to share all the same values. However, you do have to respect one another and recognize the challenges that accompany your differences. This means respecting each other with words and action.
For example, if you love to be with your family, then your partner needs to respect that, even if it’s not one of their values. This means respecting the time that you spend with them, the way that you communicate with them, and the traditions you share with them. It means making space for your relationship with them and maybe sometimes joining in on family gatherings. If they are disparaging or jealous of that time, seriously consider the impact of the love relationship on your family relationships.
2. You Have Different Family Plans
If you remain open-minded and considerate, different needs regarding time with your families of origin might be a point of compromise. However, stark differences regarding plans for a future family together could signal a real problem. Specifically, it is a serious red flag if one of you definitely wants to have children and the other definitely does not. If neither of you has any wiggle room here for changing your mind, this will be very difficult to resolve and the relationship isn’t likely to work out.
3. Your Financial Styles Differ Greatly
Financial style is another core value that can pose a big problem in relationships. Especially your relationship to money in the following areas:
- Saving vs. spending
- Dining in vs. dining out
- Staying home vs. nights on the town and taking luxurious vacations
- Focus on earning a lot of money to live lavishly vs. working to keep it simple and living frugally
- Perspectives on bill paying, credit, investment, and debt
No one way is better than another, but if the two of you view these things very differently, then you will run into conflict. Of course conflict is inevitable and not necessarily a bad thing. A couple that is committed to working on compromises about money might be able to work through this challenge – by listening to each other respectfully and considering another point of view, working with expert financial support or obtaining the help of a relationship therapist. Nevertheless, if money is a continual obstacle, it is a crucial red flag and one not likely to go away.
4. You Feel Disrespected
Do you feel like your partner doesn’t respect you or refuses to take you seriously? Do you feel like their wants and needs are always a priority?
If their job, family, and interests all come before you and yours, then you aren’t getting your needs met in this relationship. Facing this red flag early on can save you lots of valuable time and focus spent on the wrong relationship. You deserve equal time, attention and consideration.
5. You Give in at Signs of Conflict
Every relationship will have conflict. How do the two of you resolve yours? If you find yourself always giving in or avoiding disagreement entirely, then you might be ignoring red flags. Perhaps this is a problem with your own ability to stand up for yourself or you have unresolved issues from your past. If you are always the peacemaker, you may have come from a family that avoided conflict. Or maybe you feel there is a power struggle, disconnect, or your partner is not really interested in hearing your side.
Pay close attention here. Are you worried your relationship can’t withstand conflict? Has your partner given you reason to suspect that they will walk away if you don’t give in?
6. You Are Sexually Incompatible
Sexual compatibility is important in a long term relationship. This does not mean you should have equal amounts of drive and desire, but there has to be some compatibility. Do you seem to enjoy sex in relatively equal quantities? Are you both reserved? Both kinky? Are you willing to try the things your partner seems to crave and vice versa? Sexual desire waxes and wanes over the long term life cycle of every couple, but you want to consider how satisfied you both are with your sexual life and if you are both willing to work on this together over the long haul.
7. Your Gut Says “Run”
You are definitely ignoring red flags if you have a persistent or uneasy feeling that you should not stay in your relationship. Weigh your fears and doubts carefully. Talk to trusted people and a relationship therapist for perspective.
If this relationship makes you uncomfortable, then something is wrong. Trust yourself to pay attention and make decisions based on what you learn about yourself and your partner.
Relationship therapy with me can help you stop ignoring red flags and get the most out of your next relationship. Learn more here.