3 Rose Flags You’re In Love With The Idea Of Them (Not Who They Actually Are)

You’ve surely heard of green flags, red flags, and yellow flags, but I’m coining a new type of flag: rose flags.

Rose flags are warning signs you are seeing someone through rose-colored lenses. You are idealizing this person and falling for their potential but not the reality of them. Rose flags mean you’re headed towards a broken heart from your own wild expectations and hope.

Here are three rose flags you’re in love with the idea of them (not who they actually are).

1. You have to make constant excuses for them.

Most of the time, they don’t even have to give reasons for their wishy-washy or less-than-ideal behavior because you’ll simply fill in the blanks for them. For example, you tell yourself they’re so overwhelmed with work or that they’re having a bad day or maybe they didn’t sleep well the night before.

Here’s the thing, though: life will always happen. To all of us. Everyone has crappy days at the office, gets in foul moods, and has nights of lackluster sleep. But these are not good reasons to treat someone we supposedly love badly, nor are these good reasons to not show up for someone we are dating. And, frankly, if you’re still able to be there for them despite dealing with the same human struggles and they’re unable or unwilling to reciprocate? Rose flag. Move on.

2. You describe them as having so much “potential.”

Instead of focusing on their present-day attributes, you see them as someone who could do better and could become the person you need and deserve at some ever-elusive future date. If they would just try harder!

However, people are not projects and you shouldn’t want to try to fix, save, or mold someone into becoming who you need them to be. While you should want to grow and evolve with the person you’re dating, if there are basic criteria they’re falling short of from the very beginning or if there are clear signs of incompatibility in regards to their personality, values, or life goals, they aren’t going to change. They’re only going to hold you back and keep you from finding someone you’re actually meant to be with.

3. They have told you they’re not looking for a relationship.

Finally, if someone tells you that they’re not looking for something serious or that they don’t want a relationship, this isn’t a challenge to convince them of your worth or to make them feel differently. It is a warning. It is the signal to walk away.

Stop falling for potential. It will only break your heart.

About the author

Molly Burford

Writer. Editor. Hufflepuff. Dog person.