First date jitters can be electrifying. When you’re about to go have dinner or drinks with someone new, you might experience a range of emotions — excitement, nerves, and maybe even a bit of apprehension. But if you have a feeling in your gut that something isn’t right, it could mean something more concerning is going on. Unfortunately, some people exhibit suspicious dating behaviors, which is why safety is of utmost importance when you’re meeting and dating new people.
For the most part, you should feel free to date without anxiety or stress about your wellbeing. But at the same time, it’s a sad truth that not everyone has good intentions — so it’s important to be prepared in case you need to remove yourself from a situation. “Dating safety is so important,” says online dating expert Julie Spira. I talked to Spira to learn about some of the most common ways people exhibit sketchy behaviors on dating apps and IRL. You know, the actions that aren’t necessarily dangerous, but could lead to an unsafe situation down the road if left unaddressed. And thankfully, Spira has some super useful tips to help protect yourself.
As you’re swiping through apps and setting up dates, look out for these concerning red flags.