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How to recognize a potential bad partner within the first 5 messages

To help singles find a good potential partner, here are some tips to help identify a bad partner as early as the first five messages they send you.

Photo by Jared Sluyter from

With spring just around the corner, singles are making sure that their homes aren’t going to be the only thing that gets reorganized this season. Today, has released its findings on how cleaning out your contact list and removing exes is a step in the right direction towards a new romantic relationship.

While the isolation of the pandemic has led many of us to revisit old memories and past connections, dwelling on previous flings can keep you from living in the current moment and building new relationships. Even so, – part of the Dating Group, the company behind numerous online dating sites – found that most single people still have their ex’s contact information and still follow them on social media. surveyed singles to get an idea of how often they keep tabs on their exes. Findings from the data include:

  • 73% of singles admitted to checking up on their ex-partner’s social media pages at least once a month.
  • Even so, singles feel like keeping in contact with their exes hurts their chances of finding new romance. 61% of respondents reported that they have “slid into the DM’s” of an ex at least once and felt they would benefit from removing their exes off social media and deleting their phone numbers all together.
  • 37% of survey respondents reported that they have been in contact with their own “Tinder swindler,” engaging in a relationship that was in fact too good to be true.
  • Social status: 26% of users reported that they added potential partners on social media sites before they even went on their first date.
  • More than 47% of users reported that they still receive text messages from at least one ex every 6 months.
  • Out of sight, out of mind: 32% of users reported that they deleted or blocked their exes on social media following their breakup.

“In many cases, singles are unknowingly harming their chances at finding new potential partners when they spend time checking up on exes and wondering what they’re up to,” says Maria Sullivan, VP and dating expert of “Removing an ex off social media or deleting their number to stop contact actually increases your chances at finding new love by allowing you to be more open minded and not caught up on past relationships.”

To help singles find a good potential partner, here are some tips to help identify a bad partner as early as the first five messages they send you.

1. Pay attention to their tone.

Based on your messages back and forth, you shouldn’t be left guessing if a new potential partner has an interest in communicating with you. Be honest with yourself and mindful of the tone of their messages.

Watch out for overuse of exclamation points – not everything is exciting all the time.

2. Ask yourself: how much time is going by? 

An interested partner will want to lock down plans to spend time together as soon as possible. Again, be honest with yourself and notice how long it takes them to offer or express interest in a date of any kind.

3. Monitor the frequency of messages.

If you find yourself waiting two or more hours for a reply to each message you send, it is likely that they are not so interested in the conversation, and in you. It is also possible that they are bad at communicating, which will leave you disappointed later down the line.

Be realistic. While you’re anxiously waiting to hear back, your match is passing time by binge watching the latest films on Netflix and replying to other potential dates.

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4. Check the subject of conversations. 

Early discussion topics can tell us a lot about a potential date. Pay attention to what they are bringing up and make note of red flags. Are they overly materialistic, or do they have a heavy focus on physical appearance as opposed to personality? Closely watching their discussion topics – and their reactions to yours – will help you weed out who is really interested in getting to know who you are, and who isn’t interested in being genuine.

If a match brings up partying before noon on a weekday, or asks for money or bitcoin, keep searching for someone more substantial. Similarly, if a match chooses to show party pics or shows off flashy accessories, cars and clothes in all of their photos, it might be a red flag that they value style over substance.    


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