While introducing yourself to a potential love interest, it's normal to be skeptical of their personality, morals and love life. Since you're not meeting IRL at first, you'll have to read into their texts and slightly analyze their character via text. Overall, being cautious on dating apps is the best way to protect yourself and your energy, but here's eight red flags that you may want to look out for during the initial phase. 

If they give any hint of the “-isms”

  • Yes, this counts as racism, fatphobia, sexism, homophobia, colorism, transphobia and all of the comments that could be slightly problematic. This may begin with minor statements that mention your appearance, but they can fester to become major controversial opinions that affect your wellbeing. Subjecting yourself to being in a romantic relationship with someone that is willfully ignorant sounds like an automatic block and move on.

If their dating app biography is blank

  • If you’re into mystery, an empty bio might be intriguing, but I can’t help to question why there’s nothing that a person wants to share on a public dating app. Maybe they’re like Joe Goldberg from You? Maybe they’re just indecisive on what to put in something so determining like a bio? Either way, maybe a conversation with them will reveal what this mystery person is hiding.

If the conversation becomes one-sided

  • You deserve better than to have metaphorical back pain from carrying the conversation. If your messages consist of you sending them music recommendations, asking about their favorite things or overall starting a conversation, you should hope that their responses are beyond the bare minimum. One-worded replies can’t keep the conversation balanced.

If they hold you to a double standard

  • Going out with your friends late at night isn’t okay, but it’s a different story for them? Nip that in the bud quickly and let them know that there shouldn’t be an inequality between what makes you both comfortable and happy.

If they claim to be apolitical

  • Having a romantic or platonic interest in someone that is openly “not into politics” in 2021 sounds like an immediate red flag. If you’re okay with your interest being apolitical, do you. But let’s be honest, having to tip-toe in conversations with someone that you call your significant other sounds a bit unnecessary and avoidable.

If you’re the only one initiating the dates

  • Being a hopeless romantic isn’t fun. If your romantic interest isn’t taking the lead to plan your next link, maybe reconsider who you’re investing your time with. If they’re not creative, that doesn’t give them a pass to leave you with the burden of planning every bonding moment. Give them a push that you’d like a surprise or to switch up who plans what.

If they’re obviously hiding something

  • If they’re hiding something and it’s not a surprise, you should be worried. This could mean a little white lie or can include something bigger related to their love life. This isn’t a Lifetime or Hallmark movie, so save yourself the time of playing detective.

If they become obsessed with you too quickly

  • Let’s be clear. Becoming obsessed over a new potential significant other is different from wanting to be around them a majority of the time. If this new person in your life is suddenly demanding personal information and all of your devoted time, something’s up. Sharing that you need to establish boundaries can either save you before it’s too late or tell them to give you necessary space.

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