Married People Share The Alarming ‘Red Flags’ They’re Happy They Ignored
No matter how experienced you are with dating, people will always warn of those ominous “red flags.” Crazy family? No thanks. Terrible social skills? Get out. Super messy? Ghost them. Workaholic? Neurotic? Arrogant? Run in the other direction! There are plenty of suggested signs that tell you who you are supposed to walk away from. However, just because someone is waving red flags, doesn’t automatically mean he or she can’t be a phenomenal partner. Sometimes it can turn out to be blessings in disguise.
At the end of the day, no one is perfect. While it may be hard for you to imagine being with a significant other who exhibits classic red flags, they can end up being some of the most loving, caring, and supportive partners on the planet. These happily lovestruck spouses took to the internet to share the “warning signs” in their current partners that they’re happy they ignored!
#1 Who Knew Stress Could Be So Awesome?
I love how she’d worry over the smallest things. Anything that went wrong (the dentist, traffic, not having enough time to wash her hair, etc.) would send her into a panic and put her in a foul mood that could last for hours. I’m the exact opposite—I’m completely laid back. If the dentist doesn’t have good news, I’ll accept it and not worry. If we’re late because of traffic, that’s just how it goes. And I couldn’t be any less concerned about my hair, most days.
I thought her moods would be the thing to end us; to slowly wear down my patience to a point where I’d stop trying to comfort, reassure and calm her down. I was wrong. I’ve never been happier. And we’re good for each other. I can calm her down and she can make me care about things I never thought were a big deal but ultimately are. We work so well together.
#2 You’ve Got Your Whole Life Together, Man
I thought he was too rigid with the way he ran his life. He has his routines and follows a schedule for everything. Four years and some later, I finally understood that eating home-cooked meals, going to bed at 11 p.m., and waking up every day at 7 a.m. does wonders for your health. He’s a really good influence on me and he inspires me to get my life together.
#3 Tidy Or Suspicious?
I went home with him for the first time and he showed me a completely white room. No personal possessions; just a bed fitted with a white bedspread and pillows. The windows had bars on them. After a while of getting to know him, I gifted him a cool picture for his walls. No, he’s not some sadistic criminal—he’s just tidy. We’ve been living together two years now.
#4 It’s Not Him, It’s Them
My partner had a string of “crazy ex-girlfriends” which is usually a massive red flag. Turns out, he has really low self-esteem and ended up with these awful girls because he didn’t think he deserved any better. He’d keep trying to work on the relationship way beyond the point when most people would bail—after being gaslighted, cheated on, etc. I’m so glad I ignored that red flag! He’s the sweetest guy and their crazy was completely not his fault, beyond the poor judgment of dating them in the first place.
#5 You’ve Got The Best Of Both Worlds Here
I was afraid my younger boyfriend was too immature for me, but after some time together, I realized he is actually very smart and responsible. He just has a stupid sense of humor. I love him and I am so glad I didn’t jump to conclusions back when we were first dating. Sometimes his corny jokes are the ones that make me laugh the hardest.
#6 You Know What They Say About Polar Opposites…
We are the complete opposite. I love to move around, not stay anywhere too long and live in the short-term without any kind of planning on impulse. She hates the idea of being without a long-term plan and knows exactly what she wants to do with the rest of her life. She has managed to help me sort out some kind of realistic path for the rest of my life, and I’ve managed to get her on a roughly planned tour of Southeast Asia.
We have managed to develop the parts of our personalities that made life difficult for us, and we each individually blossomed as a pair. We are currently on our way to Malaysia, and I’ve managed to stash a ring in my backpack. She makes me excited for the rest of my life. I can’t wait to see what’s to come for us in the near future.
#7 This Sweet Guy Just Needed A Cheerleader
He had severe depression, no job, and upon meeting him, I knew he was clearly autistic. Not that it mattered at all—he’s wonderful. He’s the kindest, gentlest man I’ve ever met. He works so hard to overcome so much, despite it being so difficult for him. He supports me through everything unquestioningly and puts in hours of effort to help me get through my degree and professional exams.
He always has time for me, no matter what. We’ve been together for eight years and married for six years. He got his degree through distance learning and is now doing a master’s. He also now has a well-paying job. He achieved so much and he just needed some love and support to get there. I’m so lucky to have him as my partner through life.
#8 Crazy Relatives? Join The Club!
My husband avoided introducing me to his family for the first couple of years we dated. I was mildly hurt and confused at first that he wouldn’t invite me to Christmas, but I later learned that he really liked me and he was just afraid that his neurotic family would scare me away with their crazy. In an odd way, I think that’s kind of sweet.
I asked him to explain and he described his larger-than-life, overbearing, controlling grandfather whom they privately called “King Henry” because the man treats holiday dinners like he’s holding court and nobody is allowed to leave the table without his permission. I barked a laugh and said, “He sounds like my great-uncle! I know exactly how to handle him!” Turns out, our families have the same kind of crazy. King Henry loves me.
#9 Thank God You Gave Up Your “Type”
When on our second date, he was super nervous and giving me some real timid-guy vibes. He was doing this thing where he would look at me and nervously bite his lip. At the time, I had only ever dated super macho, very confident men. It was a real turn off and I distinctly remember thinking, “Ugh, okay, just get through this date.”
BEST DECISION EVER! Six and a half years later, he is my husband and the best thing that ever happened to me. He is just the best thing in the world and I couldn’t give a crap about those type-A guys I used to go for. I’m so glad I ended up with him because he’s exactly what I need. He’s way braver and more confident in himself than the kind of men I thought I was into. And his lip-biting thing when he’s nervous is rare and super cute.
#10 Slow Things Down? Don’t Make Me Laugh
My boyfriend came on to me really fast and strong which I’ve always been told was a red flag. He asked me out three days after meeting me, told me he loved me a week later and wanted to get married after four months. Turns out, whirlwind romances do exist because we’re perfect for each other and we’re still going strong five years later.
#11 No, Really, He’s Actually That Funny
My spouse has a very weird and unusual sense of humor. I was afraid he was mentally unstable. He would draw weird cartoons, mimic people’s voices and mannerisms and tell the craziest stories. Turns out he’s just hilarious and he usually keeps me belly-laughing at least once a week. A partner who makes you laugh is the best type to have around.
#12 We’ve All Got Some Baggage, Man
My fiancé’s previous marriage. We met on a dating app and at the time, we were both fairly young. I wasn’t really looking for anything serious. I had a habit of discounting people with what I presumed might be “baggage,” like ex-wives or kids, because it wasn’t anything I felt ready to take on. However, we really hit it off and he was always very upfront about the situation from day one, so I decided to roll with it. We’ve been together three and a half years. We’re engaged and are now expecting our first child together.
#13 This “Loser” Won Big In Her Heart
When I met him, my husband had just closed his comic book store. I had a few people who didn’t know him at all tell me that he was a loser because he had a comic book store and that “type” never does well in life. I knew his store closed for reasons out of his control. No one else seemed to see the man I did and I felt like I was stealing him.
He is legitimately the most generous, kindest, funniest, smartest dude I’ve ever met. I’m glad I ignored everyone else because I doubt I could find a better partner in life. There has been a lot of things thrown at us but we have navigated it together. I love him and despite how much the rest of my life sucks, my marriage is resilient and healthy.
#14 She Chose You, Pal
My wife has a flirty personality that dudes (and chicks) like really fast. I was jealous out of my mind for the first few years. Then, something clicked in me and I figured out that she’s just a human being living her own life (with me). Our marriage couldn’t be more sexy and strong; we couldn’t be more in love these last seven years.
#15 Lots Of Red Flags, Absolutely No Regrets
I met him on the Internet and he’s older than me. We met online when I was 12 and he was 15. He lived across the country. We met up in person when I was 16 and he was 19. We got together after that and married this year (we’re now 24 and 27). I’m glad I ignored the “don’t meet strangers online” rule, however, I am an advocate for being safe online. When we met in person, I met him with 10 of my friends just in case he was not who he said he was.
#16 A Relationship Full Of “Firsts” Sounds Pretty Awesome
She had never even kissed a boy. She went to an all-girls high school. I met her first year of college, so she knew nothing about guys. It took a lot of patience in the earlier parts of our relationship. I didn’t want to hang 24/7, but that’s okay and normal. We had to learn how to treat each other properly, set boundaries, and get comfortable being intimate with each other.
I had gone through the whole “figuring each other out” process before in past relationships, but this was next level and then some. It ended up totally worth it. We got married a few months ago after dating for almost five years. She is the light of my life and her perpetual innocence always gives me ways to tease her about something.
#17 Honesty Is The Best Policy, Guys
When I met my wife and we became more intimate with each other, she opened up to me and told me she didn’t want to have secrets. She then proceeded to tell me the story of how she had spent some time in a psychiatric clinic recently and what she had been through. I was a little bit scared at first, but she managed to convince me that she made a full recovery. She told me she went full jackpot with me and she didn’t want to build our relationship on a lie. We have been married for 15 years now and she’s the love of my life.
#18 How Can You Be So Chill?
I mistook my husband’s relaxed attitude as him not caring about anything. Nope. He really is that easy-going. Now, I love his even temperament. Sometimes it’s annoying but is mostly calming.
#19 You’re Living In A Pigsty, Pal
The apartment he lived in when we first started dating was so gnarly it was unbelievable. Not like “messy” or “dusty” but like nothing had been cleaned ever… not even one time. The grime was intense. His roommate cooked us dinner once and I was pretty positive I was not going to make it. The dishes got done three weeks later or not at all. He also slept on a broken futon. I ignored it because we were broke and in our early twenties and I just liked him too much. Now we’re married, and if I didn’t do the cleaning, it would get gross really fast.
#20 Don’t You Dare Be My Rebound…
We started our relationship after having been hurt from our past relationships. We swore up and down that we would be friends with benefits and nothing more. Then, three months into the fun, I decided I liked him and wanted more. He told me twice that he only considered me as a friend. I told myself I was not about to get hurt again and I stopped talking to him. If I hadn’t decided to return that message and see him one more time, we wouldn’t have had eight awesome years together and celebrated our five-year-old daughter’s birthday.
#21 Your Kind Of Weird Is My Kind Of Weird
He wasn’t known to be the type to maintain long relationships. I thought he couldn’t keep anyone. He just has a very unique personality that I love and most other girls find annoying. We’ve been together for two and a half years, and we’ve been friends for seven. I’m glad I found someone who understands my quirkiness. My weird is his weird.
#22 In-Laws From Hell Can Spawn Absolute Angels
I ignored all the huge red flags about his family. They were loud, overbearing, oversensitive, negative and narcissistic. My husband is none of those things. I literally told him after meeting them that I never knew families like his really existed. I always thought it was some exaggeration or dramatic trope. Fortunately, nearly 15 years later, my in-laws are all cut off and we have zero family drama!
#23 Please, God, Just Leave Me Alone
In the beginning, he came on way too strong. He immediately approached me at every event he saw me at. If I would catch a glimpse of him, I knew he would be standing around me within no time, sometimes not even talking to me, just joining the people I was with and standing there listening. My friends would make jokes about it and bet how long he could bear to wait until he came over. Once at a pub quiz, he got our team disqualified because he kept excitingly joining in but we already had too many people.
He tried hard to spend time with me. When I would tell him I was too busy with an assignment, he would suggest a homework date, not getting any hints that I wasn’t interested in hanging out with him. For some reason, he would show his affection by fixing small things in my room around him, like neatly rearranging my cables while we talked.
At our first official date going out for a drink, he would talk non-stop about himself… and about his ex that he had broken up with just the month before. That was a red flag, and I turned him down. But by then, I had already started to get fond of him and that grew during the months when I had some space to reflect on it.
Then, when I was with someone else, and I found him tipsy at some party. He tapped on my shoulder and said something like, “Hey, I am ready to go home now.” His best friend immediately took over (because my date was with me) and took him home. But him saying that made me realize that I actually wanted to be the one to take him home and reassure him. We have now been together for almost two years and I’ve been taking him home ever since.
#24 You’re Going To Ghost Me, Aren’t You?
My wife, for as long as I’ve known her, has been incredibly driven—always organized with an action plan and a backup plan for everything. She is definitely a lot more mature than I am. I’m the complete opposite of that—I go with the flow, have no organization, and procrastinate on nearly everything I do. We didn’t seem compatible.
While we were dating, I was really worried that she’d leave me because of how I am personally; however, we soon discovered that we both compliment each other really well. She makes sure I’m accountable for what needs to be done and helps me stay on track, and I remind her to have some fun every now and again. I’m really fortunate to have her in my life.
#25 Aw, He’s Just A Big Teddy Bear
I thought he was way too clingy and loved stuffed animals a lot. He was a little too attached to stuff. He turned out to be a guy with a big heart who taught me a lot about caring for people. He’s working on the sentimentality and having too much stuff—he likes having space for living in too—but I’ll love him no matter what.
#26 Lose The Self-Deprecating Humor, Dude
His offensive jokes. It was all an attempt to hide terrible self-esteem. He also had no idea why certain comments he made were wrong. But children of bigotted jerks can turn out to be wonderful people. That being said, if I wasn’t in my “I can save the world” phase, I probably would have told him to sod off.
#27 She’s A Little Too Perfect…
She was an entirely happy person who’d had a great life. Not a usual red flag, but as someone with a rough past and a history of debilitating mental illness, I was worried that she wouldn’t be able to understand and cope with my depressive episodes. Turns out, her optimism, energy, and happiness are infectious, and while she knows she can’t possibly understand what’s going through my head, she still stands by me and does her best to keep me smiling.
#28 You Want To Be A…What?
The morning after we first met, he told me that he wanted to be a bear. He also told me how he only likes hoodies with one front pocket because it makes him feel like a kangaroo momma. It really weirded me out, but I could tell he was being genuinely honest with me about something he was passionate about. He is the kindest, most generous, rational and caring man I’ve ever met, and just the right amount of weird for me.
#29 I Mean, First Dates Are Supposed To Suck
Twenty minutes into our first date, we had just ordered food at a sit-down restaurant. He pulled out his phone and called his sister to tell her about visiting their mom. Mom was fine, everything was good. The evening ended in a handshake. That was over seven years ago and we are happily married now.
#30 Actually, She Didn’t Want To Screw It Up
She wanted us to not tell people we were dating. I wondered whether that was a red flag about and whether she would be willing to commit to a relationship. A few months later, we made it public and we are now married. Turns out, she felt that I could be the one and didn’t want to jeopardize it by having people gossip.
#31 Who Gives A Crap What Others Think?
My husband is extremely social and outgoing which is great, but he is also slightly rough around the edges. Like, he is not really concerned about his image and sometimes just says, does, and wears what he wants without thinking of how it looks to other people. At first, I was not sure what to think of him, but I am glad I got to know him because he is one of the most genuine and trustworthy people I have ever met.
#32 Yep, This Is A Creepy Possession To Stumble Upon
He had a side gig as a puppeteer and used to use the plastic eyes from secondhand stuffed animals for the puppets. So when I met him, I found a bag of eyeless stuffed animals. I made him show me the puppets for proof before getting over it. He’s the best though and we’ve been married for over a decade with a family.
#33 I Don’t Work Hard For Nothing, Honey
Her inability to relax. I have slowly been able to get her to give herself some “me time” and she has worked so hard that even after I got laid off, we were still able to afford in vitro when we had fertility issues. Now have two gorgeous twin daughters. I truly believe they wouldn’t be with us today if my wife wasn’t so hardworking. Love her so much.
#34 As It Turns Out, He’s Kind Of A Genius
My husband was not a great speller. I worried I was too smart for him. He is still not a great speller, but after getting to know him, I learned he is smarter than me in all sorts of other ways that complement our relationship nicely. Not to mention, he reads even more than I do and actually is a wonderful writer, he just has to utilize spell check more frequently. In any case, the old Einstein quote about not judging a fish by how it can climb a tree comes to mind.
#35 Hey, We’ve All Hit Some Rough Patches
At first, we were just friends. He had lost his license for stupid kid stuff (squealing tires, loud music, and several speeding tickets) and, in consequence, he also lost his job. My friends and family thought I was nuts when we did start seeing each other for those reasons. He went to traffic school, got his insurance in check and got a job. Now, 18 years later, he is a wonderful husband, father, and provider. Sometimes you come in people’s lives when they are down on their luck. Sure glad I didn’t listen to anyone.
#36 This Is The Real Struggle Of Any Graduate…
She hid $10,000 of credit card debt from me. Turned out, it wasn’t a shopping addiction or anything. She had to pay for a semester of college on credit cards because she didn’t qualify for student loans and her parents wouldn’t co-sign for her. She was really ashamed and angry about it. We have been happily married for 10 years at this point and she’s turned out to be more responsible with money than I am. Or at least more conservative with it.
#37 Overprotective? I Prefer “Trying To Make Sure You Don’t Implode”
The fact that he was so overprotective. Most people see it as a red flag and I did too. But after so many years, I realize that it was never about controlling me or being jealous, it was just him truly caring about my well-being. Especially since I used to make stupid decisions.
#38 So…You’re Not A Cannibal, Right?
When I’d only known my husband for a couple of months, we were cuddling, and he said, “You’re so cute, I want to cut you into little pieces and eat you!” That was over 17 years ago, so I think I’m okay.
#39 Come On, We’re All A Little Crazy
I was concerned about her mother’s mental health issues. Her mom sought and received help, then became the best mom-in-law a guy could hope for. My wife is nuts, but her crazy matches mine perfectly. In other words, I am one of the lucky yin’s that found my yang.
#40 As It Turns Out, Gentlemen Are Still Out There
When we first arranged to go out, he kept offering to pick me up in his car and drive to the place, even though I live on the other side of town. He then said that if he couldn’t pick me up, then he’d drive me home. Since it was online dating, I was a bit worried that he was a bad guy because he seemed very eager to get me into his car… Turns out, he was just a gentleman… They do still exist! Years later and we’re still going strong. We’re married with two kids.
#41 I Won’t Be Your Mother, Man
The fact that he was my housemate was a big red flag. I knew that he saved up his laundry for when he visited his mother’s house every fortnight, a five-hour drive away… at age 24. I was a touch worried that he would be as reliant on me as he clearly was on his mother. The relationship could end in flames and that could make all of our friends immensely uncomfortable. We kept it non-physical for three months to play it safe, and he showed me time and time again how he was willing and able to step up to be a reliable partner. Sixteen years later, I’m so grateful we gave it a go. We’re married now with a child on the way.
#42 Oh, So You’re Just An Air-Head
My boyfriend said and did some things that I considered red flags for not being faithful (lying about past relationships, hanging out with different people than he said he was, etc). This was within the first year of our relationship, in our teens. I know him well enough now to know that most of these red flags were really just him being kind of an air-head. We’ve been together many years now and I trust him enough to know that when these miscommunications happen, that they’re just that.
#43 You’ve Gotta Admit, She Makes A Pretty Good Point
When we first started dating, she used to casually talk about her exes quite a bit. Not in a nostalgic way, but in a casual way, like, “Oh, my ex used to work there.” I thought it was super weird and I was on the verge of saying something, but then she found out I was with my ex for five years and asked me why I never mentioned my ex before. She told me that I couldn’t just forget about someone who shaped my life for five years and would hate it if I wasn’t able to talk about her if we broke up after five years. It made me realize how warm at heart she was and it really relaxed my thinking about stuff like that.
#44 A Few Barriers Are No Biggie
I had just turned 18 when we met and he was 24. We also happened to meet two months before I was leaving for college four hours away. The long-distance sucked and my parents weren’t huge fans of the age difference but the next fall semester, he decided to follow me and we both graduated in July. It’s been four and a half years since we started dating and we’re about to move in together.
#45 Plenty Left Over For You, I Guess!
She doesn’t like pancakes. It is still annoying, and she says I should just make them for myself but I’m like… how am I gonna make pancakes for just one person? She is super great though, so I’m over it.