The subject of red flags in relationships may seem like a taboo topic to some, especially those involving a romantic element. Often times, red flags are not addressed as a way of deflecting any possible conflict that may arise. But it is important to realize that red flags in any relationship, whether it be a friendship, romantic, or any other type of connection become present to others before those actually involved.
So the question remains, what do those red flags look like? Although they can differ with the various types of relationships, there are common ones that need looking out for.
“A relationships involves balance, being able to spend time apart and together,” said campus pastor Ryan Matthias. “If you’re hanging out constantly with them and no one else, that would be a red flag.”
Matthias says that we generally do not recognize red flags that may be present in our own relationships but are quicker to point them out in others, especially those in the romantic sense.
“The quicker the relationship moves to the physical, the faster it dies,” said Matthias. He says that if there is a “list” of ways to please the other person, that is oftentimes a warning sign in the relationship.
He shares of one relationship building exercise that he has done with couples in marriage counseling. During their time together, Matthias has them build a puzzle, starting with the corners and working inward, building it in a correct manner until they reach the final piece, saying,
“If Christ is in the middle of the relationship, the only way you can see the other person is selflessly, and you would do anything to make them happy.”
Matthias was also able to give some insight into what a healthy relationship should look like as well, saying that both parties have to be willing to lift the other up and be codependent when it comes to that of romance. A depth reserved for only one other person is the opposite of a red flag and should be acknowledged.
“If you see a good relationship, comment on it,” said Matthias. “Never do relationships alone.”