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Is your summer romance unhealthy?

By Rachel Parodneck


It’s summer and love is in the air. Or is it? Summer has a certain vibe where everyone seems loved up. Social media shows people with their significant others on vacation, out on the town, with friends and family. It can look as if you’re the only one single. So you meet someone and immediately fall head over heels, or perhaps it’s the idea of a summer romance that is beguiling. It can be tempting to overlook little red flags. Maybe they’re only orange at this point. When is enough enough though? Below are some common red flags that one may tend to overlook:

*Does your summer romance (SR) take hours to respond to your texts on a consistent basis? Unless that person is a surgeon or in a very specific field where it is prohibited to look at your phone, chances are they’ve seen your message and have other priorities rather than responding in a timely fashion.

*Has your SR canceled plans last minute under questionable circumstances such as a “friend in crisis?” or “something came up”? Maybe more than once? Chances are if you haven’t had that exclusivity conversation, your SR could be seeing someone else, someone who is a higher priority to them.

*Do you feel you’re always the one asking your SR to hang out? If you are always the initiator, do you do so because you fear your SR won’t ask you? In a healthy relationship, each party should be putting in similar effort to see one another. If your SR is not reciprocating, it’s likely they don’t care to see you or would rather be spending their time with someone else.

*Does your SR ask for dirty pics from you? Always important to remember that once you send a nude shot or two out, anyone could see it. Are you comfortable with your parents or your boss seeing a picture you send to your SR? No? Then don’t send it. And if you do anyway, throwing caution to the wind, never include your face.

*Has your SR introduced you to any of their friends or family? This is important as it shows your SR cares enough about you to integrate you into their lives by introducing you to those whose opinion they care about most. If you haven’t been introduced, it could be (sorry to have to say this) that you’re one of many or simply a flavor of the week (or summer).

*Does your SR refuse to post pictures with you on social media? Do they even untag themselves if a picture including the two of you is put up? Quite possible they do not want their family or friends knowing who they have been seeing as they could be expecting you won’t be in their lives for long. Or maybe they don’t want their other paramours seeing one another.

*Is your SR secretive with their phone? This can mean always having their cell phone face down or taking it with them even if they are going to the restroom. They perchance would not like you to see their notifications from Tinder or Bumble or texts from other people they are seeing pop up.

*Has your SR stopped planning fun activities out for the two of you and instead the time you spend together has devolved into ‘Netflix and chill”? It may have been worth it for them to put effort into wooing you in the beginning, but now that they’ve got you hook, line, and sinker, that effort is no longer necessary to get what they want.

Sorry to be the bearer of such harsh realities. The list goes on but these are some common (and important!) questions to ask yourself. You deserve someone who answers your messages ASAP, who respects your time, is consistent, and looks forward to hanging out with you. Someone who is proud to show you off to friends and family. And a person who continues to plan dates with you that are not solely spending time indoors Netflix and chilling. It may be tempting to simply go with the flow and overlook these crucial red flags. But the crushing truth is that it’s better to hold out for someone you are sure cares about you than to constantly be on edge about that SR whose true feelings you are unsure of. Enjoy your summer and protect your heart.