Thought Catalog Agency

6 Red Flags They’re Leading You On (And You Need To Cut It Off) 

In an age where transparency often takes a backseat to the thrill of casual dating, it can feel like you’re fumbling in the dark, trying to understand the other person’s intentions. “Are they really into me, or am I just an option?” This burning question can feel impossible to answer, particularly if you’ve been hurt before. Navigating these murky waters can be daunting, but being able to spot the signs of someone leading you on can make all the difference. It helps you reclaim your power, take charge of your emotional wellbeing, and ultimately, avoid an unnecessary heartache.

You’re Practically a Mind-Reader

You find yourself constantly trying to decipher their thoughts about the future. You’ve been seeing each other for a while now, but every time you casually bring up plans that are a month or two away, they deftly steer the conversation elsewhere. Even simple things like “We should go apple picking when the season starts,” are met with a vague, “We’ll see.”

Stomach-Turning Anxiety

The butterflies in your stomach have transformed into a knot of uncertainty. When you think about where you stand with them, it’s not with excitement or warmth but a deep, unsettling worry. You shouldn’t feel like you’re walking on eggshells in a relationship. The constant fear of rocking the boat and the emotional turmoil is a big, waving red flag.

Superficially Perfect

You two have a blast whenever you hang out. Your chemistry is off the charts and your flirtatious banter is the envy of your friends. But beyond the fun and games, there’s a concerning lack of emotional depth. They’re the first person you want to call for a night out, but when you’re having a tough day, you hesitate before hitting dial. If they’re keeping things light and avoiding deeper emotional connection, it’s time to reassess.

Spontaneity or Convenience?

You thought their spontaneous nature was charming at first. But now, it seems plans are only ever made last-minute when it’s convenient for them. The lack of thought-out dates or gestures and the pattern of filling gaps in their schedule with you can feel less than romantic. You should be a priority, not an afterthought.

Invisible to their Inner Circle

You know all about their best friend Alex’s recent breakup, and their roommate’s annoying habit of leaving dirty dishes in the sink. But you only know these things because they’ve told you, not because you’ve experienced them. Despite having met your friends, they’ve never introduced you to theirs. If they’re keeping you separate from their social life, it might mean they don’t see you as a long-term part of it.

Dating App Limbo

It’s been weeks since you’ve swiped right, but you haven’t quite hit the ‘delete account’ button yet. Deep down, a voice whispers, “just in case this thing with Jordan doesn’t work out.” Unwilling to fully commit, you realize you’re just as detached as they seem to be.

In all this, remember that open and honest communication is key. If your gut is telling you something is off, it might be time to sit them down for a conversation. Sometimes they might be just as scared and uncertain as you are. The only way to know for sure is to ask.