Singletons have become ‘pickier’ about their potential partners following the pandemic, one dating expert has claimed – insisting they are now even more concerned about the ‘pink flags’ that could lead to ‘red flag scenarios’.
These pink flags include watching too much TV, which could show you’re running out of conversation topics, according to Tina Wilson, British relationship expert and founder of Wingman.
Meanwhile, she suggests never taking social media photos together signals your partner doesn’t want anyone to know about you.
Speaking exclusively to FEMAIL, Tina said ‘less-obvious’ warning signs that your relationship might not work long-term are now no longer easy to ignore.
She added: ‘With so many couples breaking up during the first lockdown and realising that they didn’t even like each other, its highlighted the fact that we really need to choose wisely who we spend our time with.
‘Daters are smarter than ever and less tolerant or willing to compromise than pre-pandemic so hyper-vigilance around who you could couple up with is at an all-time high.
‘That’s why “pink flags” have become a new term as singles don’t want to waste time finding their match.’
But what are the new pink flags to look out for and when does it become a red flag? Here, Tina reveals when the date should ‘act fast to protect themselves from wasting time and eventual heartache’…
Pink flags include watching too much TV, which could show you’re running out of conversation topics, according to Tina Wilson, British relationship expert and founder of Wingman. (stock photo)
What are ‘pink flags’?
Pink flags act as warnings to bigger and more dangerous red flags that your relationship won’t work or that you’re not compatible.
When realised singly they are usually never a problem, but when a few signs pop up, singletons are mindful and will not ignore that they could be falling into a red flag scenario and something that could be avoided, says Tina.
1. YOU DON’T TAKE PICTURES TOGETHER
You either don’t take any photos together or you are the only one taking the pictures of you both.
Pink flag: ‘Your new love interest might just not be into taking photos but check his online socials – do they post regularly and of what? Are they hiding your existence from their followers?’
Red flag: ‘Their Instagram feed is flooded with photos, but you are nowhere to be seen or even worse, they are documenting your date but no reference of you anywhere to been seen. It’s clear they don’t want people to know about you… move on fast,’ insisted Tina.
2. ARE YOU BEING COOKIE-JARRED?
‘Cookie jarring’ happens when you are not their only option and they have yet to decide if you are ‘the one’.
Pink flag: ‘Things are going well but you have yet to have “the talk” to define your relationship and you wonder why and when this will happen. Something is holding you back from bringing it up.’
Red flag: ‘You find out you are not exclusive, and they are talking or seeing other people behind your back. You are essentially one of the ‘cookies’ they are keeping as an option when things don’t work out with others. Know your self-worth and don’t be an extra,’ says Tina.
3. YOU ARE BEING ‘LOVE BOMBED’ WITH GIFTS AND AFFECTION
The term ‘coming on strong’ has nothing on a love-bomber. Your new love-interest will be focused obsessively on you and will make you feel like a king/queen with their doting attention.
Pink flag: ‘Your new partner is showering you with flowers, words of love, endless gifts and lavish trips – it is really romantic but a little too much too fast?’
Red flag: ‘After the love bombing, they go suddenly quiet for a period of time before reappearing with love and gifts. Similar to ghosting but the key difference being the behaviour during those weeks or months you have been dating.’
‘There isn’t anything to stop yourself being love-bombed but taking notice of obsessive behaviours in the beginning could have you taking a step back to be slightly more cautious and seeing true intentions shining through,’ explains Tina.
4. YOU HAVE BEEN ‘POCKETED’ JUST IN CASE
They’re keeping you in their pocket until they’re sure they see a serious relationship with you.
Pink flag: ‘You have been dating for a few months but your new partner hasn’t introduced you to their friends and family yet, it may be a sign that you’re being “pocketed”.’
Red flag: ‘If you have made the first move and you’ve already introduced them to your friends and family but they’re yet to introduce you to theirs, it may be that you’re in two different stages emotionally.
‘Don’t rush them if they’re not there yet but it could indicate they are not sure about you. Do you want to waste your time with someone who isn’t sure about you?’ questioned Tina.
Meanwhile, Tina suggests never taking social media photos together signals your partner doesn’t want anyone to know about you (stock photo)
5. WHEN YOUR RELATIONSHIP IS A ‘SLOW FADE’
When your communication starts to slowly drop, it apparently means your relationship is in a ‘slow fade’.
Pink flag: ‘Have the calls, texts and meeting plans become less frequent? It could be a sign your relationship is coming to a slow fade and potentially entering the ghosting phase, where one of you will stop responding completely.’
Red flag: ‘If you are finding that you are the one making the effort to see each other and arranging plans for the two of you, this is a sign you need to walk away.
‘If you are someone who needs closure, spot the signs before communication stops completely and be ready to move on,’ says Tina.
6. MOST OF YOUR DATES INVOLVE WATCHING TV
It can absolutely seem romantic to cuddle up in front of the TV with a glass of wine but watch out for the warning signs.
Pink flag: ‘You are overdoing it on the Netflix binges. Watching your favourite new series together might be fun but cramming in another and another means you are not actually engaging or showing an interest in each other.’
Red flag: ‘When you do go out on a date but your conversation revolves around TV or you find there’s not much of a conversation. You are heading into relationship disaster,’ warned Tina.