It’s no secret social media was designed to create transparency. Often times, way more than we asked for. But that shouldn’t apply to your love life. If you’re in a relationship, you don’t need to broadcast it to the world in order to legitimize it. But keeping it a secret? That’s a warning sign if there ever was one.
The dating site Plenty of Fish takes social media cues seriously when it comes to relationships, whether they’re brand new or comfortably worn in. Here are five red flags they say you should keep an eye out for if you’re seeing someone.
They’re not accepting your friend request
Nobody expects a friend request after the first date, but after a year of dating? Come on, now! If you’ve been seeing someone for a year or so and they won’t accept you on Facebook or reciprocate your follow on other social media platforms, this isn’t good. According to Plenty of Fish, “Whatever reason they come up with, this may be a red flag that they want to hide the fact they are in a relationship. There is a difference between keeping things private and keeping things a secret, one is used to protect, the other is used to deceive.”
Accepting someone’s friend request — someone you’re sleeping with — shouldn’t be an issue.
They’re commenting on inappropriate pictures
It’s odd how many people don’t realize you can see exactly what Instagram photos they’re liking and commenting on. It’s usually not a big deal, we all like dumb stuff now and then, but if your SO is engaging with sexualized photos or other accounts that appear to be NSFW, listen to your gut.
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Says PoF: “If your partner is actively engaged in conversations with these people, or slipping into their DM’s, you may want to have a conversation about their activity. Each partner should always be accountable to actions and how they affect the other person. Interacting with accounts that are disrespectful to your relationship is not OK.”
They are addicted to social media
This may seem like a no-brainer, but it’s becoming increasingly difficult to tell who’s addicted to social media and who just uses their phone a lot (almost everyone). But if there is an actual addiction involved, that could spell disaster for your relationship because if you’re in a relationship with your phone, you’re likely unable to connect with people IRL. Plus, says PoF, it could give you false cues about your own life. “Social media often fails to show the bad, or tougher days people have which ultimately causes people to compare their lives to one that only looks perfect on the outside. There is no such thing as perfect.”
They have reconnected with exes
“Social media is not an invitation to connect with the past just because you now have access to it. Chatting to exes can lead to temptation to pick up where you left off,” warns PoF. Not to mention, it’s completely disrespectful to the relationship you’re actually in. If you wouldn’t introduce your current SO to the ex you’re thinking about reconnecting with on social media, it’s probably not a good idea to go down that road.
You don’t exist on their social media
It’s one thing to keep your relationship on the DL, but if your SO appears to be single and ready to mingle to the rest of the world, that’s a bad sign. There’s a difference between keeping a relationship — especially a new one — quiet. But hiding it is another story…with a likely sad ending. According to PoF, “there should always be transparency about the fact that you are in a relationship. A subtle caption, a casual photo or mention are easy ways to communicate this to the public eye.”