I was talking with a woman years ago about early warning signs, and she said to me, “Ooooh, you’re talking about Pink Flags—like Red Flags, but before they turn red.” And I said, “Yes! That’s right! I’m talking about the stuff that happens when the couple is first getting to know each other—only through the first month of their dating relationship.”
In the beginning is when the foundation is set for the rest of the relationship—and I’ve found lots of Pink Flags in the very beginning.
Something else to note about Pink Flags (other than the fact that they appear early in the relationship) is their subtlety. When I say “See the Pink,” I’m talking about seeing the warning signs when they’re still subtle. I emphasize repeatedly that every relationship is different. So what I’m saying with regard to the Pink Flags is that they are something you’ll want to keep your eye out for and be aware of. I’m not saying that a relationship exhibiting some of the Pink Flags is necessarily going to be a violent one. I’m only saying that these are subtle signs that things may take a turn—towards violence.
So if you or someone you know experiences the Pink Flags, it is time to talk with a professional so that you can further analyze your particular case. Is the relationship heading for trouble? And if so, what can be done about it to nip that trouble in the bud? A huge benefit of catching these warning signs early is that there’s a much greater chance that the partners can learn to change their behaviors, nip impending trouble in the bud, and turn things around. (And if partners are unable to turn the relationship around, it’s easier to get out of the relationship before attachment has grown strong.)
If you recognize that these factors may be present in your relationship and/or that you’ve had a pattern in the past of abusive relationships that you want to stop once and for all, participate in private coaching with Dr. Stephanie Lang. This is her specialty. She will help you change those destructive patterns so that you are enabled to have relationships that are truly loving and joyful.