Have you ever fallen for somebody that appears to be perfect for you in every way, except for that one characteristic that you view as a “deal breaker flaw”? If not you, then maybe a friend of yours has fallen into the wrong relationship? Let’s talk about some potential flaws that might signal a challenging relationship. Your new love interest might be handsome, smart and funny, but cheap. Or maybe he enjoys a fulfilling career, dances like Fred Astaire, but smokes and you don’t. Or curses and you don’t. Or has debt, and you don’t. Or hates to exercise and you love it. Some Republicans might say that being a Democrat could count as a relationship deal breaker or vice versa. And at this time of year, what if your new love interest would rather be in a relationship with the quarterback of his favorite football team, and you don’t like threesomes? Whatever the red flag might look like, almost all of us have fallen for the wrong person at least once in our dating journey. So why do we fall, knowing it is a risky chance to take?
Some of us may think we are miracle workers and try to change an undesirable characteristic into something more acceptable. This hardly ever works and can become a problem later in the relationship when the behavior doesn’t change. This can lead to resentment and anger and more difficult breakup once both parties are at the end of their ropes. While not impossible for adults to change, it sure is hard. Another reason for falling into the wrong relationship could be a sense of edgy adventure with a “bad boy” who provides a break from an otherwise normal dating routine. A bad boy could be described as someone who doesn’t have classic good looks, but who is attractive in a rugged, Johnny Depp way. He looks hot, but there are red flags tattooed all over him (so to speak). He won’t open your car door, but he’ll show you a good time on the back of his Harley. Typically, these bad boy adventures are short lived and not what women desire for a long-term relationship.
For some women, falling into a bad relationship is better than being alone. Both men and women sometimes fear growing old alone, without a partner, and being by themselves in their twilight years, or in any year. They may dread eating alone, sleeping alone, sitting in church alone, showing up solo to a party, or being the fifth wheel at events where all of their friends are in relationships. Almost everything is more enjoyable when shared with someone special, so it is understandable that people stay in relationships that are less than perfect. Sleeping with someone who may not be their ideal partner, sure beats sleeping with their Rottweiler.
In some cases, finding a partner who is sexually available takes priority over recognizing any red flags. And if the sex is good, that makes it even harder to see obstacles to a long-term relationship. This probably goes hand in hand with feeling alone, sleeping alone, and craving physical attention from a companion. It’s human nature to desire love, in whatever form it is offered.
Partners with red flags can provide entertainment, excitement, and a break from the norm. While this might be fun short-term, like a roller coaster ride at the fair, this type of relationship may not be healthy, practical, or stable in the long run. But who ever said that roller coasters were healthy?