Are you someone who moves from one unhappy relationship to another? Most likely that’s because you got into the relationship for the wrong reasons. Relationships and marriage are admirable goals for anyone to strive towards but there are many reasons why people may decide to engage in relationships for all the wrong reasons. Relationships should bloom from a mutual love and respect between two people and should not be influenced by outside parties, peer pressure or to fill a void in your life. Before you jump into another relationship, look at these 10 red flags that might help you avoid unhealthy relationships in the future.
- Convenience: Many times people get into relationships just because they find it convenient. Maybe you found a man who always elects himself to drive you and your friends around. Or maybe he has an awesome house and a beautiful pool that you and your friends can chill at whenever you want. Possibly you’re friends are all matched up and you just want to fit in on their “couple getaways” and need a man to fill that void for you. It’s great to find a patient and loving man, but if you tend to use him for his “things” or bank account, don’t be shocked if he catches on to your game and leaves you up a creek, with no ride home.
- Ageism: Society has conditioned us to believe that once we are over 30, we are past our prime and therefore we have passed our expiration date to be wanted and loved by another person. Often women feel panic and anxiety set in during this time. Coupled with comments from friends and family about “not getting any younger” and you have the perfect ingredients for a wrong decision. Many times older relatives might put pressure on you to settle down by a certain age and create a timeline they feel you should follow. Relationships created for the sake of society, or to appease your family, or because of desperation absolutely do not stand the test of time and shouldn’t be entertained in the first place.
- Rebound: It is a very common thing to get into relationships to avoid or forget problems. Victims of bad parenting or a history of abuse are often seen getting into such relationships as a means of escape. Many people often jump from relationship to relationship by embarking on a “rebound” before they give themselves time to heal from the hurt, pain, or loneliness from their previous relationship. Such bonds may bring passion, purpose and excitement in the short term, but fail to survive, as they are not based on love.
- Missing Parent Replacement: As surprising as this sounds, there is a lot of truth to this. Many men particularly have been guilty of this scenario. There are men who have never lived alone for any period of time since they left their mothers home. On the flip side, some women who grew up without a stable father figure might be trying to fill this fraternal void in their life with a boyfriend. Let’s be clear, parents and lover are very different and neither one can take the place of the other. Keep your intentions clear on why you want a boyfriend in the first place, and if it’s so he can start the BBQ at dinner and help clean the yard, then maybe it’s a father you are on the hunt for, not a lover.
- Boredom: This is probably the most dangerous reason why you would want to be in a relationship. There are so many things to do in life to make it more interesting and if you decide to choose a relationship in order to pass the time you will not end up with a life full of happiness. Relationships are about the giving of yourself and the other person giving to you. It is not a hobby to relieve boredom. Don’t go find a boyfriend just so you have someone to take road trips with and eat lunch with at the park. Maybe you should consider meeting new friends to fill your time, not a man.
- Scared to be Alone: The fear of being alone is a societal conditioning that suggests that you should be been married with children by the age of 30. Often it is women who feel this burden as they move towards their 40s and beyond. With no relationship in sight, they envision that they will end up being a lonely cat lady. This thinking affects their selection process causing a sense of desperation to kick in. Invariably this leads to choosing the wrong man. The majority of those who get into a relationship for the wrong reasons fall into this category. Many people tend to feel worthless or lacking something when they are single or lonely, but jumping into a relationship to “solve” this will only turn into a huge regret later.
- Influenced by Others: The approval of family and friends is reflected in the way we take their advice. In order not to look like the odd one out, we may listen to their suggestions and date someone that we had no intention of dating. Long lasting and happy relationships start with a solid foundation. The foundation should be the reason that you have decided to embark on a relationship in the first place. A solid foundation will keep you grounded when the storms break out around your relationship. If your foundation is weak, then what you invested in may fall apart. Many times men and women get into relationships because of friends. Many people tend to think ‘Everyone else have someone, why not me?
- Need of Physical Intimacy: For many people the motivation for relationship is sex or physical intimacy with a repeating partner. Desperation for sex can many times result in jumping into the sack with the wrong people and failing to connect on any level other than the bedroom. Yes, physical attraction and intimacy is important in a relationship, but it should not be the basis for a relationship. If this is your style, don’t expect the man of your dreams to end up from your weekend booty-call. Chances are, men who are looking for this type of situation, is not looking for a relationship at all.
- Wants a Challenge: Many times people try to win over others because they are unavailable and are intrigued by a challenge. Winning over a man could be considered a triumph to you and a prize you won’t stop fighting for until you get it. Unfortunately the reason that person might not have been available from the start is because they either are already in a relationship, or they just aren’t into you. Not to say that a little bit of a challenge isn’t fun and exciting, but be sure you are fighting for an available and good guy. You’d hate to end up with the “bad, hard to get guy” just to find out he’s just that, a bad guy.
- Rushing may lead to a broken heart: It takes time to build a healthy relationship, when you rush into something, you might as well rush out of it. Written by Danjuma Iliya