03 Aug Week 4: The ARP (3rd Red Flag – You’ve Been Warned!)
Toxic people actually tell you they’re toxic.
People will tell you who they are. And when they do, you’ve got to listen. I previously described, HERE, a colleague and a romantic partner who told me they were toxic from the get-go.
I decided to overlook these warnings because I didn’t know exactly who I was and what I needed in a partnership, either at work or in my personal life.
Not knowing who we are and what we need, and even worse, lying to ourselves about who we are and what we need, is one of the main reasons we ignore this red flag.
I’ll give you an example of when I avoided a toxic person by being honest with myself.
Shortly after I left my relationship with my last toxic lover, Mr. Cruelly Handsome, I developed a mad crush on a particularly gorgeous Frenchman who was my male roommate’s close friend.
I’d heard the Frenchman was a rogue. Going through women like someone with the Avian Flu goes through Kleenex.
I decided I didn’t care, because I told myself I wasn’t looking for a serious relationship. That I just wanted to have FUN.
I decided that having a sexual liaison with an alluring Frenchman wouldn’t damage me if he walked away. I could count it as a pre-marital adventure I’d think back on fondly.
A huge party at a mutual friend’s house. The Frenchman is there. I am there. Seducing the Frenchman is my mission should I choose to accept it.
I spent the night following him around, chatting him up, getting him drinks and finally offering to give him a ride home when he was too drunk to drive.
As you can see my taste in men was impeccable.
When I pulled up to the curb in front of his apartment I looked expectantly at him. In the hopes he’d invite me in.
Instead he looked me blearily in the eye and bluntly asked, “What do you want from me?”
Needless to say I was a bit taken aback by his lack of subtlety.
“Um,” I said. “Nothing?”
“You don’t want anything from me?” he asked suspiciously.
I thought I should probably admit I wanted a roll in the hay, but I was too embarrassed.
“No, I don’t want anything from you.” I said.
“Good,” he said, “Because I don’t have anything to offer. So, you want to come inside?”
He told me right there, flat out. He had nothing to offer!
This time I listened.
I realized that even though I thought all I wanted was a sexual adventure, there was a good chance I wanted more than that and was lying to myself.
So I bid him adieu and drove home alone.
One of the most important tools for finding Real Love is being absolutely, 100% honest with yourself about what you want from a relationship.
Sometimes we lie to ourselves so we can seem more appealing to people.
“Oh no, I don’t want marriage and babies, I’m happy to settle for the scraps you throw me because I want you to love, love, love me.”
We have to respect ourselves, and our wishes first, or no one else will.
Keep an eye out for next week’s installment. Red Flag #4.
The last several red flags usually appear once you’ve been dating for a little while. At this point you might even be hooked. And once the toxic man knows you’re hooked, that’s when these Red Flags really start to fly.