Do you ignore people's red flags? Are you a fixer?
If someone shows you their true colors, don't try to repaint them.
This statement really hits home for me. I realized years ago, after my last relationship, that I am a fixer.
I think about people in terms of who they could be. Completely ignoring who they really are a lot of times. Looking past the red flags to only try to see the good things. I try to repaint them. Seeing the potential while ignoring the bad things about them.
I realized that I have done this in many of the relationships in my life. In my romantic relationships, friendships and even with family. There are glaring red flags telling me that things are not great. That a person is not good for me. That I should run, not walk, the other direction.
Red flags can show up in any kind of relationship
For example, my ex-best friend was doing drugs and ended up heavily addicted. Also a boyfriend who was an alcoholic and verbally abusive when drunk. Another boyfriend who was also an alcoholic and occasionally used drugs. I had them all and all of them were bad for me! But I stuck around, tried to see the good in them and completely ignored the red flags.
It took me years to fully realize that I was doing this. I realized that it also changed me having these people in my life. It put me into situations I should never have been in. It caused me emotional pain. I ended up in financial trouble because of some of these people. Guess what – not one of them cared how they had hurt me either.
I finally understood after years of pain and struggles that I needed to start paying attention to those red flags. I needed to stop trying to paint over people's true colors.
What are some of the red flags to watch out for?
If you are a fixer too here are some red flags that you should be looking for in your relationships. If you notice any of these things in your partner, friends or even family members – start asking yourself if you are trying to fix them.
- Do you find yourself always justifying their bad behavior? Are you always making excuses for the way they are acting? ‘He's just had a bad day that's why he is being so mean.' ‘ He had a really bad childhood, so he lashes out sometimes.' Yes every one can have a bad day and lash out – but if it happens often ask yourself if you are making excuses for them too often. Everyone has baggage and issues – BUT that doesn't mean you have to bear the brunt of it. This one is a huge red flag!
- Do they not respect your boundaries? If you tell them no you don't want to do something, do they listen? Do they respect your wishes or are they constantly pushing past them? Often women will feel bullied by their own partners, friends or family members. This isn't ok and people who care about you shouldn't make you feel that way.
- Do they have massive entitlement? Meaning they expect you to do more for them than they do for you. Would your friend expect you to come get them if they were stranded but can't be bothered if you are the one who needs help? Are you always their shoulder to cry on but are never there for you? A healthy relationship needs an equal amount of give and take.
- Do they dismiss how you feel or put you down? When you try to talk to them about important issues do you get brushed aside all the time? Are they always making you feel like your feelings aren't important? Or worse do they say mean or hurtful things that make you feel small or insignificant? People who truly care about you won't always make you feel bad.
One of the most important things to remember is to listen to your gut. Your intuition will likely help you identify those red flags. You have probably heard your inner voice telling you these things before but you ignored them. Stop doing that. Stop trying to paint over people's true colors.
You will end up being happier in the long run because you will find people who are good for you. People who complement you and who don't need ‘fixing'.