You’ve started a new relationship, everything is perfect. Your partner is caring, wants to spend time with you, covers you with thoughtful gifts. This is the right one, you’re thinking to yourself. Finally! No more dating apps, no more awkward first dates, you found it.
Fast forward to a year later. You’re on your bed crying and feeding exclusively on Hot Cheetos for the past week. You’ve got orange-tinted mouth corners, and you wonder how you didn’t notice before what person they really were.
The problem is this, though, and they weren’t that horrible person at first.
You weren’t blinded by love. They changed.
But how could you predict it when it wasn’t that obvious?
There are small signs that a person could change (for worse). I call them yellow flags. They are not so apparent as the red ones, but just like a traffic light, it’s only a matter of time before they switch color.
Yellow flags are words, behaviors that could be charming at the beginning of the relationship. But, later on, prove to be the opposite.
*The examples aren’t gender-neutral for style purposes only, but the article is meant for anyone. Enjoy!
1. The Way They Treat Others
One evening you’re on the couch watching Netflix together, he gets a call from his mother. He declines it and complains about how she’s always smoldering and annoying. You smile, thinking how nice and considerate it is that he wants to devote his full attention to you, and move on.
A week later, while you’re eating out, your order is wrong. It’s ok, you like that one too, but he calls the waiter and talks to him in a harsh tone asking for the right one. You admire someone who stands up for you when you’re too shy to do it.
After three months, you’re half an hour late to go to the movies, he reacts, yelling at you.
If respect for others, especially people in weaker positions than him, is lacking in the early days of the relationship, it’s often a sign. The way they treat other people is how they’ll treat you as soon as they feel completely at ease.
2. They Cover You With Gifts, but Something Is Off
He always takes you out for dinner, wears expensive watches, and design clothes. You don’t know his salary, but you’ve got a rough idea. You’ve seen the dozens of different credit cards that come out of his wallet. You start to suspect that he has tons of debts.
According to Forbes, having conflicting money styles is one of the most damaging causes of divorce for couples.
Attaching too closely to a person who has no idea how to handle personal finances will eventually impact you also. It’s nice to feel spoiled. Everyone enjoys gifts, but before you make more meaningful decisions, be careful to imagine a long-term future with this person.