You're seeing someone new, and things are getting serious. Your new partner is intelligent, the sex is great, and they make you laugh, but something still feels off. It's common to feel trepidation at the beginning of a new relationship -- hey, having feelings is scary! But I know that every time I have ignored my gut, my gut has turned out to be wrong.
And while most of us understand that there's a major difference between butterflies in your stomach and red flags waving in front of your face, it's also easy to talk yourself out of suspecting the worst and wondering, "Should I end my relationship?"
That's why Elite Daily reached out to relationship expert Susan Winter about some definitive signs that show you need to find the nearest exit and GTFO of your relationship before it's too late.
1. They Move "Too Hot, Too Fast"
Winter warns that a new partner who gets too intense too rapidly will propel a relationship forward to burn out at “mach speed.”
“It feels great to be pursued and desired,” says Winter. “Though the feeling is delicious, the ride is a steep incline upward to its apex with a sudden crash landing.”
She warns that lost weekends in bed and sharing fantasies of a future are a part of this person's routine. Your new partner may thrive on the drama and flair of a relationship, but lack the sturdiness and resilience that it takes to be with somebody for the long haul. So before you crash, you should break up and run.
According to Winter, this kind of passion burns up quickly and cannot be sustained. A partner who moves more slowly but steadily forward will create the healthy, long-lasting foundation that supports a lasting future.
2. They Talk About Their Ex All The Time
Even though I know that this one is, like, the red flag they teach you in Dating 101, I have still written off my anxieties when someone I'm seeing talks nonstop about their ex.
One time, I started sleeping with someone right after meeting up with them because they were heartbroken about their recent breakup — two weeks before we hooked up for the first time. If he had been making his ex out to be a villain, then that would have been one thing. But he just seemed sad. You can have feelings for more than one person at once, right? I asked myself. Just because he isn't over her, doesn't mean he won't have room for one more.
Wrong, says Winter. “If your partner hasn't packaged and processed their past, it will be baggage they drag into your future as well.”
While it's normal for people to talk about their exes — it is part of a person's past, after all — when the topic does come up, Winter says that it should feel as though the person has “closed the door emotionally to what transpired.”
She says that when they speak, they will give physical cues that can indicate whether or not they have moved on. “As they speak, watch their eyes and observe their behavior. Is there intense emotion around the story they share? Or do they speak more matter-of-factly, indicating that it's something in the past?”
If they aren't giving any genuine indication that they have moved on, you should break up with them -- at least until they resolve those lingering issues. It's tough when the topic of an ex comes up, and it can very easily lead you to question the way things are going. Noting these distinctions, according to Winter, will allow you to separate a red flag from a green light to the relationship.
3. They Have Emotional Outbursts
The first couple of dates with someone are always a bit like an audition. You are on your best behavior, and so is your date. When you start to get a better feel for one another, that's when your true self begins to shine through the facade. And if their true self involves a lack of self-control over their anger, then that's a sign you need to leave.
“Did they snap at the cab driver for no reason? Berate the waiter? Overreact to a situation that could've been handled diplomatically?” asks Winter. She says that any of these behaviors indicate that something is seriously wrong with the way they handle conflict, and it will impact the quality of your relationship, your happiness, and possibly even your physical safety.
Listen to your gut in this scenario. If someone is making you feel uncomfortable or threatened, then they are showing their true colors. It's best to get out early before they cause more harm or before one of their outbursts is leveraged at you.
And while cutting something off early might feel like you are missing out on a good thing, it's way easier to break up at the beginning of what be a potential relationship than at the end. To pursue a relationship while ignoring these red flags will only leave you with a bruised heart. When it's all over, that little voice in your head will still be there saying, "I told you so."
Don't allow it to get to the point where you are hurt. If you see one of these signs, drop everything and run.
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