Modern dating is hard, and you have to be prepared to be let down multiple times before you find the right person for you. Unfortunately, this means being stood up, ghosted, and now, “love bombed.” This new dating trend sees a person showering their partners with attention, only to turn on them just as quickly as they made their victim fall for them. Consequently, this tactic is a form of manipulation and can turn abusive without a moment’s notice.

Relationship. There’s nothing quite like the feeling of being in a new relationship. Your stomach is constantly full of butterflies, you have a smile on your face at all times, and you’re absolutely smitten about your new partner.

Losing interest. But when the honeymoon phase is over, things can turn sour rather quickly. Typically, you can tell when someone is beginning to lose interest, and in most mature relationships, you can mutually agree to stop seeing each other. But things don’t always work out this smoothy when it comes to dating.

Love bombing. Love bombing is the latest dating trend that’s unfortunately becoming more and more popular among new relationships. It starts out when a partner begins to show a lot of attention and affection, only to do a complete 180 without any warning.

Abuse. This technique is a way for the abuser to gain control of his or her victim and manipulate them as much as possible. Unfortunately because the victim is enjoying all the attention and gifts they may be getting, they have no idea they’re being manipulated until it’s too late.

Red flags. “If extravagant displays of affection continue indefinitely, if actions match words, and there is no devaluation phase, then it’s probably not love bombing. On the other hand, if there’s an abrupt shift in the type of attention, from affectionate and loving to controlling and angry, with the pursuing partner making unreasonable demands, that’s a red flag,” wrote psychiatrist Dale Archer, via Psychology Today.

Signs. These are important signs to look out for, because despite the cute name it’s been given, “love bombing” is actually just another form of emotional abuse. Typically, it’s done by people who could be considered narcissistic or psychopathic.

Abuse. “The important thing to remember about love bombing is that it is psychological partner abuse, period. When one person intentionally manipulates and exploits another’s weakness or insecurity, there’s no other word for it,” said Archer, as reported by the New York Post.

Healthy. So if you’re wondering whether or not your relationship is headed down that road, be sure to pay attention to your partner’s actions. Archer says a healthy relationship should start out slowly and build up over time.

Pay attention. “Maintain healthy friendships. Stay in contact with your family. Have close friends that are open to discussing and giving advice on things that are happening in your dating life. Make sure you are fulfilled in your work life. Be outspoken about your needs and wants in a new relationship and always take it slow. Finally, remember to stop, look, and listen,” writes Archer, via Psychology Today.

Confident. As mentioned before, love bombers tend to be narcissists who thrive on attention. Unfortunately, most people don’t realize they’re dating narcissists because they simply come off as confident people.

Traits. “When it comes to mate selection, the more adaptive aspects of narcissism are often seen as desirable characteristics,” says another psychiatrist, Joe Pierre, via Psychology Today.

Other trends. Unfortunately, love bombing isn’t the only dangerous dating trend to be aware of. Aside from ghosting, which is when the person you’re talking to ends up cutting off all communication entirely, there is also breadcrumbing.

Ego boost. “Breadcrumbing is the conscious act of leading someone on for the thrill of the ego boost. It’s the ‘hot’ cycle in the game of hot and cold. Designed to lure in one’s prey through attention, flattery and s*xual intrigue, breadcrumbing is completely self-serving. It’s a head trip, played for control and domination,” said relationship expert Susan Winter, as reported by Elite Daily.

Signs. Most people don’t realize this is happening to them because they are too caught up the thrill of the constant attention. However, if a person is constantly telling you that they’re busy or making up excuses not to return your phone calls, they’re breadcrumbing you, and you should drop them immediately.

You. Have you been a victim of any of these dangerous trends? What was the outcome? How did you realize it was happening? Let us know what you think!

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