I’ve had plenty of relationships that ended with me feeling like an ass because the red flags were all there for me to see! So I hate to see a friend ignoring them. Is it that we hope that we are wrong? Are we thinking that we can “change” them? Is it that we really think maybe the red flags aren’t there?
A friend of mine was dating a guy (we’ll call him Red Flags) who was divorced. Red Flags’ kids were horrible, horrible children who were not disciplined at all. His ex-wife would go out on the weekends that he had the kids then lie and tell him she was getting a cold so he had to keep them longer (putting pictures on Facebook of yourself acting like a drunk whore he night before doesn’t help your “I’m sick” story) and he would leave them with my friend. I guess he had a terrible divorce and that was his excuse for not wanting to marry my friend (we’ll call her Heartbroken). So, Heartbroken really wanted to have a child and told me that she was ok with him not wanting to get married, though it was news to me that she didn’t want to get married. I told her that it seemed strange to me that he wanted to have a baby with her but not get married. She brushed my concerns aside and continued on her way. She got pregnant, had a beautiful baby boy and everything seemed great. Well, they seemed great through Facebook and MySpace. I had moved up to NH from Maryland by then so I wasn’t there to see what was really going on. Long story short, Heartbroken just found out that Red Flags has been cheating on her since their son was 4 months old (he is now a year and a half). She moved out and is telling me she never say it coming and can’t believe he would do this to her. I don’t want to make her feel worse so I’m not pointing out the obvious red flags that followed this guy around because it’s easier to see the situation when you’re standing outside it.
This is the third friend of mine in the last year to find out that her boyfriend was cheating on her and/or lying about this or that, and being completely shocked by it after he was waving red flags in her face.
Why don’t we see that if they don’t want to marry us there is a reason (and him not being able to afford an engagement ring is not one of them)? Why do we continue to wait and wait hoping that he will someday get it together and actually make a commitment? Why do we think that if he’s willing to have a baby with us, he’s committing? A man having a baby with a woman is not a committment for him. If he wants out, he’s committed to every other weekend and maybe paying child support, not to the child’s mother. Why don’t we listen to our friends when they try to warn us about the Red Flags of the world? Why do we waste so much of our time and energy on these Red Flags??