Relationships and Red Flags–When is it too much?


By  Marina Sbrochi

How many red flags is too many in a relationship?

Most of the time I say give someone three chances. Some of the time, one flag is all it takes. This would depend on how high that flag is raised.

If you sense a bit of jealousy – perhaps that means something more serious or perhaps he really likes you and he just had a run away emotion. Your ex calls and he whimpers and gets a little clingy for a day — then goes back to himself. Strike one. It’s a flag, but a little one.

You now have your eyes a little more open to his behavior and if you feel your freedom being squashed at any other turn…throw in the towel.

Let’s take that scenario up a notch. You are out with your man and another man looks your way. Instead of blowing it off, he approaches the other guy, yells at him “don’t ever look at her again!” and goes back to your side and puts his arm around you like you are a piece of property. That is strike one and you are OUT. The flag can’t get be any more RED.

Your flag sensor is in your heart and your brain. You know when it’s a flag. Don’t blow it off. If it made you uncomfortable. Log it. Write it down. If it never happens again, throw that paper away. If you find your flag list growing….it’s up to YOU to notice. You are smarter than you think. Trust yourself.


What makes a healthy relationship?

Mutual respect. Communication. Trust. These are the cornerstones of a good, healthy relationship. If you don’t have these as a base. You aren’t even close.

A healthy relationship doesn’t test a partner. A healthy relationship makes the other partners needs as important as their own. A healthy relationship doesn’t play games. You can talk about issues as they arise without screaming, yelling and name calling. Nobody runs away when things don’t work out. A healthy relationship will have bumps. But it is how you handle those bumps that keep you on a healthy path.

Stress is one of the biggest causes of illness. Don’t let your relationship stress you out. That is the epitome of unhealthy. A good, healthy relationship will make you feel better — body, mind and soul.


What signifies an unhealthy relationship?

Mistrust. Miscommunication. Lingering past issues. Anger. It should be common sense that we stay away from these things. Often times, people wander into relationships with their own issues and baggage, they haven’t taken care of any of it, so they can’t recognize bad behavior. They are so blinded by what they think is love (which is probably just attention, lust or some sort of control) and they can’t get out.

If you have issues that are unresolved, you need to resolve them before you even enter a relationship with another person. This will be your first defense against an unhealthy relationship. If you are confident and have yourself together, it will be easy for you to recognize red flags and not continue with an unhealthy relationship.


Marina is an award-winning author of Stop Looking for a Husband: Find the Love of Your Life. To find out more about her, visit

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