With online dating basically becoming one of the most efficient ways of meeting people, there seems to be a whole new set of red flags to look out for. For some, they see the red flags way too late, like when they're on the most uncomfortable coffee date of their life with a weirdo who seemed like a normal person on the internet.
Spare yourself the harrowing experience of uncomfortably drinking a latte across from someone who's about to become your new stalker and watch out for these red flags while online dating.
One of the easiest ways to spot a weirdo is if they ask to hang out almost immediately.
Sure, it may seem nice at first to have someone so eager to meet you. But realistically shouldn't they want to find out more about you first? If someone is messaging you wanting to meet before even asking "How are you?" then they're probably trying to do one of two things. A) hook up - which is great if that's what you're looking for - or B) want to meet you before you can get to know them well enough to figure out they're a crazy person.
While wanting to hang out right away is a definite flag, dodging invitations to coffee or lunch is definitely another huge red flag.
Not wanting to meet up might be a worse red flag than wanting to hang out right away, because they're probably trying to hide something big from you. The first thought to come to your mind should whether or not they're a catfish. If they don't want to hang out with you, they might be hiding who they really are.
Or worse, maybe they're trying to hide you from an existing significant other.
No one likes a flake. So why should you tolerate flaky behavior from someone just because their profile pictures are cute? If they're flaking on you before you even start getting serious, they're going to flake on you when you try to make a commitment too.
Also, if they're flaking, you might want to ask yourself what the reason for that might be. Are they hiding you from another guy/girl? Are they just plain lazy? Or worse if they keep flaking on your first meeting they might not even be who they say they are.
I don't think there are many things more annoying than a clinger.
If they're blowing up your phone just because you didn't get back to them immediately, then you have a clinger on your hands. And in that case, you should run. Dear god, don't give a clinger any attention or you'll find them stuck to you like a leech.
Don't get long messages confused as clinging, though! Someone taking the time to respond thoughtfully to your messages is just showing interest in you.
Is this person always "just getting out of the shower?" or are they always "just getting home from the gym"?
Are you constantly receiving texts that are almost entirely made up of double entendres? Or does everything lead to "What would you do if I was there? Haha, then what?"
Chronic and seemingly spontaneous sexting is a big red flag. Texting like that definitely shows that their mind is in the gutter 100% of the time, which can mean a couple of things. They're either a sex addict or they're strictly a sexting addict.
Maybe having someone in your contacts who's almost always DTF is something you're okay with! I mean if you're just looking for fun having a seemingly guaranteed fuck buddy could be a positive. However, they could be a sexting addict. What's the difference? You will never, ever actually meet up with this person. Regardless if it's a problem with their self-esteem or something much worse, they will never fail to avoid your Netflix and Chill invites.
If he hits you with a "haha then what ;)" kick him to the curb.
Or even worse…
Let me make this clear: I have no vendetta against sexting. Sexting is fun - and I mean common, I'm a writer, I'm pretty darn good at it. But here's the thing, someone who jumps right into sexting without even exchanging hellos is gross.
Sure, if you're in the mood at the time this might seem really convenient. But realistically this person is basically showing that they have no social skills whatsoever.
Similarly to when you're going out to find a hook-up at a bar or a party, you should do some talking first when meeting online! Otherwise, it feels like the virtual equivalent of someone running up to you at a bar, grabbing your butt, and asking to go back to their place.
Not only is this annoying, but it's also a huge red flag. Especially if you've already told them no for whatever reason.
No one should pester you about something like sending dirty pictures, which requires an aspect of trust. If this person hasn't taken the time to build that with you, but already expects nudes that show their priorities. Trust apparently doesn't matter to them, which means your privacy - and even respecting you as a person - probably doesn't matter to them either.
You might be asking why no bio is a big deal? But, if you really think about it, they're either counting on their looks to get them by or - surprise - it's not actually them!
This might also mean that they're really uninteresting and think that their appearance is the best thing about them. Or, they might be so into their physical appearance that that's what matters most to them.
If they're not including any biographical information that might mean that they aren't who they say they are. And I don't just mean that in the sense that their using someone else's pictures.
Not including stuff about themselves allows them to twist their personality to fit what different people want. This way they can pretend to have certain qualities or interests depending on who they're talking to at the time.
People who do this usually do so more subtly in conversation or very blatantly in their bios.
This should stick out as a red flag because it means that not only are they constantly comparing themselves to other people, but they think they're better than everyone else around them.
Whatever they claim to do differently than every other member of the dating pool probably isn't that different, and are things normal, well-adjusted people are more than capable of doing.
One of my favorites is when guys say that they're better than other dudes because they'll treat you like a princess or some other member of royalty. Which, to be honest isn't that out of the ordinary for a guy who respects women. On the other hand, a lot of girls just think by saying that they're "not like other girls" will suffice as an actual personality trait.
Realistically people shouldn't think of themselves of being in competition with other people for a mate. That's gross and probably hints that there's a plenty of things wrong with them beneath the surface.
Honestly, people who do this are the worst. Getting to know someone is about the conversation, which usually involves shutting up and listening to the other person talk for extended periods of time.
If someone is talking in novels about themselves, then that gives the impression they're super into themselves. And do you know what that means? You're not going to come first. They are.
Now if you're like me, you talk a lot when you're nervous. Learn to ask questions of the other person and more importantly learn not to be afraid of silence, or risk coming off like a self-obsessed asshole.
Again, getting to know someone is about the conversation. There's a whole lot of people who treat dating, especially online, like an interview.
Don't give the person who likes to avoid talking about themselves an excuse. Even if they are shy, they might not be talking about themselves because they're hiding something.
Conversation and dating are about give and take. That means that the other person in the conversation needs to do some talking too.
This is such a big red flag. Like if anything this is the biggest and reddest flag ever.
For some reason, people put up with backhanded compliments. Which is so not okay. If someone is saying things along the lines of "you're cute for someone who's chubby" or "ignoring your piercing/body modification you're really attractive" then you should be unmatching them and running in the opposite direction.
People who give you backhanded compliments do not respect you.
Let me say that again for the people in the back; THEY DO NOT RESPECT YOU.
Don't put up with behavior like this for the sake of a cute profile pic. These kinds of people are not worth your time and will leave your self-esteem in ruins.
This is one of the biggest red flags that gets consistently overlooked.
While you might not want to pass judgment on some cute guy/girl online just because they're friends with someone you don't like, you totally should. I'll admit that this one seems super harsh. But if you really think about it, passing on someone who's friends with a frenemy is probably an excellent idea.
Not to sound cliche, but you become your company. The people who you hang out with directly influence who you are. So why would you want to talk or hook up with or date someone who's most likely really similar to their shitty friends?