6 Online Dating Red Flags

March 5, 2019 0 0

Would you say that there are at least five, or maybe six online dating red flags? We do. If a date is rude to the waiter, or flakes dandruff on your slice, chances are you’re going to call an audible and bail. But how do you know what person is like before you meet up in person, and what they’re really thinking? While there’s no red-flag-detector test that’s foolproof, the following insights can definitely give you a good idea about what to expect should you connect in real life. You just have to know what to look for – and these online dating red flags can help keep you safe, and keep the cray crays out.

Red Flag


Cropped Photos

Now, forgive us if this sounds a little crude, but someone with nothing but cropped or blurry photos often has something to hide. It might be some physical insecurity, or it might be the ability to properly use a camera. Either way, the more you can see up front — this is basically window-shopping for people, after all — the better. Also pay attention to the angle of the shot: Individuals who stick with strictly downward-facing images taken from above or head shots (often the most flattering) may be hiding something up their sleeve as well.

Impersonal Messages

She sent you a message! Awesome! But, for some reason, you get more of an “HR recruiter sending you a job rejection” form letter vibe than any actual personal feels. It’s one of two things: 1) She’s a serial dater who copies-and-pastes her responses one after the other, or 2) She’s a bot. Either way, you’re probably best off bailing… unless you’re into the whole bot thing, that is.

She Blatantly Disregards Your Criteria

Good for you for having an idea of the kind of person you want to date. And while you shouldn’t be too picky (everyone boasts their own unique upsides and quirks, and love is often found when you’re least expecting it), there are some online dating red flags that must be respected. For example: Anyone who outright disregards your dating criteria (for example, a 45-year-old woman emailing you when your profile clearly says your age range is 25 to 30) is a sign of someone just itching to waste your time. Be polite, but don’t take the bait. Unless it’s Heather Locklear. 

She’s Hesitant About Meeting In Person

Sure, it’ll take a few e-mails, texts, or even phone calls for you two to get to know each other, but there’s definitely a point when the relationship needs to evolve offline, and start to exist in the “real world.” If she’s hesitant to meet you in person, there might be a chance she’s not all what she seems. She might just be nervous — which, in its own right, can be a little endearing — but she might also be someone else entirely. You have to decide what’s worth the risk. 

She Makes And Breaks Plans Regularly

Otherwise known as “flaking out,” this one is just as annoying as it is disrespectful. If she’s constantly trying to reschedule plans, or can only take phone calls at certain times, she’s either legitimately too busy to have a relationship, or she isn’t entirely single. Look out for worrisome signs like requests to meet only at specific places or getting calls from a restricted number. Chances are, she might be trying to keep you a secret, dude.

Drunk Dials

If you’re in an established relationship, drunk dials can be fun and hilarious. But let’s say you and she have courted online for a bit, exchanged numbers, and her first call to you comes through when she’s wasted? Probably not a good sign. It either means she’s not taking you seriously, is just in it for the booty call (which, hey, might not be a bad thing), or needs to be really liquored up to act like she’s into you. Either way, it’s probably best if you let that call go to voicemail.

Cheat Sheet

Sometimes the signs aren’t obvious, and you need to go deeper than our six online dating red flags. Here are more signals you can be aware of to pick up on:

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Matt Christensen

Matt Christensen is a freelance writer based in Cleveland, OH. Publications he's written for include Maxim, Men's Journal, Fatherly.com, Cosmopolitan, and more. John Stamos follows him on Instagram.

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