5 Red Flags to Watch for in Poly Dating

Dating can be exciting and adventurous, but it can also be riddled with anxiety and stress. Keeping your eyes open at the same time your heart is will help you to spot any red flags that serve as warning signs to move on.

5 Red Flags in Polyamory Dating

1. She waves the victim wand too widely.

Does your date complain constantly about how terribly she is treated by others? She might be trying to force your natural response of compassion and gallantry, and using lies to manipulate her dates onto her “side.”

We all have horror stories about some of our dates and partners, but they should be shared in context in time-appropriate settings. For example, if someone was abused by an ex, it would come up eventually as part of intimate communication. But sympathy grabbing by spilling too much too soon can indicate someone is unstable, not just open and free.

2. She sounds too good to be true.

The stereotype of the scary sociopath tends to be of a socially awkward, frustrated white man who lives with his mother and takes out his fury on lonely women. But he can be a she, and the sociopath next door is more often than not magnetic and charming in temperament, intelligent, and good looking. The narcissistic personality is a close ringer for the sociopath, and also draws energy from excess attention and admiration—such people are entertained by manipulating others and watching them comply or crumple. By erasing other people, she is made complete.

Poly dating doesn’t mean you’ll avoid the narcissist. They lurk in any social circles, and those who want to destroy multiple people at a time or use many men at once will be drawn to polyamory. If someone’s profile or personality upon meeting seems a little TOO perfect, let the alarm bells ring.

Be aware if someone seems wooden and doesn’t seem to have any faults or insecurities. Maybe it’s a match made in heaven, but it might be made in hell.

3. She puts down her partners and exes.

It’s natural to commiserate over imperfect dating experiences, and sharing candidly can bond a new couple. But if she is constantly petty and mean in her put downs, or belittles her men for their appearance, intelligence, lovemaking skills, or beliefs, don’t fall for it. You might feel stoked because you are clearly the better man, but she will talk this way about you too.

4. She’s a sugar baby.

If you’re a man of means who has a penchant for arm candy and you like to support your sweet habits by helping her with rent or tuition, so be it. Some guys are generous, and some have a kind of kink for this type of thing. Some simply consider it a fair exchange—you buy the champagne and oysters and stilettos, and she brings her gorgeousness. This man has no delusions about the authenticity of her attraction or care, and he is happy to take what money can buy.

But many a man becomes a sugar daddy without knowing that’s what is happening. If you believe she loves you or at least likes you, but you keep paying for everything, be aware that there are women out there on the prowl. Some are good at what they do, and they like to lurk in poly circles because they can prey on more than one man at a time.

5. She keeps testing your boundaries.

If your date doesn’t accept your restrictions and boundaries when it comes to intimacy and sex, put keeps pushing past them or asks you to ignore commitments you’ve made to your other partners, she might not be an egalitarian poly lover at all—she wants to be number one, and maybe your one and only.

It’s not flattering because it’s not about you. She barely knows you. She gets off on the conquest and on making you break your promises, not on equality or variety in sex and love.

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