What Are Red Flags?

Author: Raven Shadowborne © April 28, 1999

A red flag is an internal warning that something is not right here. This is the words many in BDSM use to describe a feeling that something is wrong, or a thought that something isn't right here. Red flags vary for person to person, though there are some which seem to be believed by the majority of people in my experience. For many, the term applies to warning signals of an abusive person.

A red flag should be something that you feel is not right for you. If you hate the idea of golden showers and a person insists on them, then you should experience a "red flag" or feeling of something isn't right here. Some of the general read flags are as follows.

A person refuses to give personal information about themselves yet insists on meeting you anyway. This should raise a red flag because it could signify someone that is not honest, and could potentially be dangerous.

A person stating that they will do absolutely anything you want even without ever having seen your face. This could be a person that has a self esteem or other psychological/emotional problem that prevents them from protecting themselves and could lead to false accusations of abuse or rape.

A person refusing to give their marital status before a meeting could be someone that is cheating on their spouse or otherwise dishonest.

A person that insists a safe word is not necessary under any circumstances should raise a red flag. A safe word, specially in new relationships, is an important thing to have.

A person that refuses to allow you a safe call should raise a red flag. This person is ignoring your safety and could very well be dangerous. 

A person who insists that a scene must take place on an initial meeting could be someone that is only interested in sex, and possibly dangerous.

Using your common sense is your best defense against finding yourself in trouble. If you feel or have "red flags" going off about a person, do not meet them until those red flags have been addressed to your satisfaction. They may be nothing more than personal fears, or they could very well signify a real dangerous person. Red Flags come from your instincts, trust them.

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