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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » SCARLETEEN CENTRAL » Relationships » Dealbreakers.

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Author Topic: Dealbreakers.
Heather
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Dealbreakers in relationships: what are yours?

For instance, I don't date anyone who can't respect my rights to my own body, whether we're talking about when I want to have sex, how I dress or my right to reproductive choice. I also don't date people who have treated their exes like crap or who won't take their share of responsibility for things like safer sex and sexual health. As a lifelong bisexual, homophobia or the idea that my orientation is for entertainment also doesn't fly with me. People who can't stand themselves are also out: if they don't love themselves, loving each other just isn't going to work. Those are some of mine (admittedly: I have a lot of them).

Do you feel like your bar is set high or low? Are some of your dealbreakers non-negotiable, while others have some wiggle room? How did you find out what your dealbreakers were?

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Bun Bun
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I remember distinctly one relationship where the deal breaker was when he told me he (and I quote) thinks "there are no such things as bisexuals". I seriously could have ripped my hair out (especially since he KNEW I am one). So I definitely agree on the homophobia one. Another HUGE deal breaker is drugs. I don't tolerate drugs at all. Excessive drinking also counts under that. It's not sexy, it's not legal (for drugs at least), and destroying ones health just isn't cool.

I guess you could say that I do set the bar a little high. I hope I don't come off as arrogant when I say this, but it's really hard for me to connect to someone if they're not really on the same intellectual level as I am. I'm not measuring on school grades of course, rather, if we're having a conversation, I'd really like some input back instead of a blank stare or a "uhuh.".

I have pretty high standards and I guess that stems from a previous abusive relationship. Honestly, I just didn't want that to repeat itself. (and luckily, it hasn't. I'm in a wonderful relationship and have been for almost 2 years now.)

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September
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My biggest deal-breaker is substance abuse. Drugs are never okay, and drinking is okay only in moderation. I'm not going to negotiate on this, either: I've had a horrible experience with a 'friend' who was heavily into drugs, and being around people who are using (even if they're currently sober) gives me the creeps.

Other big deal-breakers are homophobia and lack of respect for me and my body (this includes being anti-choice).

I'd also be reluctant to date someone who is very religious (I'm an atheist and I find that, a lot of the time, strong religious beliefs clash with my own morals and beliefs), isn't very interested in politics, knowledge and the world of academia, and has very low self-esteem (to say it with the words of RENT: "you cannot find real love until you love yourself").

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Johanna
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"The question is not who will let me, but who is going to stop me." -Ayn Rand

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thepurplepoet
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Substance abuse is a huge one for me as well. I definitely have to be with someone I can connect with on an intellectual level. Honesty is a huge deal breaker for me as well. Additionally I have to be with someone who respects me as a person, and my right to make my own decisions. Smoking, for me, is also a huge dealbreaker. I'm probably even more picky then I'm letting on. ha ha.

[ 09-06-2008, 11:37 AM: Message edited by: thepurplepoet ]

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~*~Have you been half-asleep, and have you heard voices?~*~

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libertatissacra
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I will not have sex with someone who would not support my choice to get an abortion should I get pregnant.

And, realistically, I wouldn't want to be in a relationship with someone where sex was a "big deal" and we had to wait until marriage, or until a certain amount of time had passed. I just don't view sex that way, I want sex in my relationship, and being with someone who wasn't in agreement with me on that would be difficult.

And I guess I'm the opposite of a lot of people with this, but someone being totally against all drug use is a huge turn-off for me. I don't want to date an addict, but I also don't like the other extreme.

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"America is the only country that went from barbarism to decadence without civilization in between."
-Oscar Wilde

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Freya137
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trying to cut me off from my friends would be a big one for me
pushing me into any sexual activity i didnt want to do

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bluejumprope
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Some of mine:

Perceptions of and values around child abuse is a biggie for me. I have absolutely no interest in dating someone who condones their own child abuse ("I sure was a difficult kid, my dad did the right thing hitting me. I'm a better person because of it") or who condones or participates in the abuse and disrespect of other children. Someone who talks about reproducing in such a way that reveals their lack of empathy for a future child's experience is also a dealbreaker.

I won't date anyone who disrespects other peoples' bodies. Period. I have a tolerance for people disrespecting their own bodies only up to a certain point.

Drug use (including tobacco, alcohol and prescribed or unprescribed pharmaceuticals) aren't dealbreakers for me per se. I have a big problem with lack of self-awareness about using them though. I have the same feelings about self-injury. Cutting isn't inherently a dealbreaker for me, but I won't date someone who cuts and isn't interested in exploring WHY they're coping in that way.

Animal abuse is a dealbreaker. People who torment their pets, participate in rodeo or similar events, or mock animal rights activists and vegetarians/vegans is a dealbreaker. Being a vegan isn't necessary but deliberate ignorance of animal cruelty, not caring about animal cruelty, mindlessly eating an omni- diet and mindlessly supporting industries that practice animal cruelty are dealbreakers.

I'm more flexible with these things for people I'm having casual relationships with, but for a serious relationship, these are basic requirements.

[ 02-05-2009, 11:59 AM: Message edited by: bluejumprope ]

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without tenderness, we are in hell. -Adrienne Rich

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Mortality
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Food choices can be a huge deal for me. I'm a life-long vegetarian so anyone who's all like "that's not natural" is out. I can date a meat eater (my ex/boyfriend is a meat eater) but they have to be respectful of my choice.

Homophobia/racism/sexism/record of physical and/or sexual abuse/stuff like that. Non-negotiable.

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Heather
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Because this comes up here so much, I also wanted to add that I have a VERY firm dealbreaker around any partners who will not get tested. I just do NOT sleep with those people, period, even with condoms, and if I found out someone was dishonest about testing later on, the sex STOPS.

Extra negatives are scored with me if someone not only refuses to get tested or voices crappy, defensive attitudes about it, but also expects a partner to take care of their sexual health when they themselves won't.

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Cian
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I will go with the substance abuse of all kinds, albeit that even the moderate consumption of alcohol makes me uneasy.
And I have to say, as pompous as it sounds, "stupidity." I could not tolerate a partner who does not know how many cents to a dollar, whose biggest problem is what to wear today, their biggest passion is a sports team, or who doesn't know that Paris is the capital of France, not only some would-be celebrity. I know this may sound harsh, but I would rather like a partner I can have deep, intellectual conversations with. Of course, I don't really socialize with these types either because we have nothing in common, so it isn't much of a problem.
Trying to push their ideals onto me, let it be religion, beauty ideals, nutrition, exercise. I am my own person, not the to-be-product of someone's fancies. I will respect peoples' choices if they are not harmful to them or those around them (and not horribly so on the environment), as long as my choices are respected. Not that I would support anyone eating babies, endorsing animal abuse or dumping nuclear waste into the sea.
There's so much more, I feel like I'm a very demanding person. Haha! No wonder I've only had two partners, both long term, in my life. Out of which the first certainly does not meet my standards anymore, the jerk.

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Mortality
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Also, what Heather said. Testing is really important.
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Heather
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For me, too, not only is testing really important, not acting like a baby about it when someone is also telling me they're mature enough to have sex is key.

I don't want to be the Mommy of my sex partners. [Smile]

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Onionpie
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Safe sex is a pretty huge one for me. If someone whinges and comes up with seven million different reasons why they just can't possibly wear a condom, they're out. If they're irresponsible in their sex life, they're more than likely irresponsible in other areas, too.

Also when people keep nagging me (oh, only joooking of course) to do something sexual, that pisses me off beyond belief. It's a big one for me because in my previous emotionally abusive relationship, that was a huge thing that happened; nagging until I just gave in. So I am touchy about the constant "jokes" if they happen.

Someone on the same level as me not only intellectually, but ambition-wise, too. Yet another thing I really discovered from that abusive relationship of mine! If the person doesn't have anywhere they feel they're going, it makes ME feel lost, too. I don't like people who are OVER-ambitious, putting themselves before anyone else, but I like someone who wants to do something with their life, you know? And they have to be well-spoken and interested in learning. Terrible grammar really kills me, and I just can't relate to people who don't care about widening their knowledge at all.
(when I was in grade 11, before learning about all the dimensions, I said "I wonder what the 5th dimension would be?" and the boy said "Who even thinks about that?" and I knew then that we weren't meant to be [Razz] )

Drug and alcohol abuse is a biggy for me. I don't drink at all and I don't do drugs. I'm okay with someone drinking every once in a while and I'm not going to instantly leave someone who does maybe a bit of pot every once in a looong while if I'm really into them otherwise, but it makes me uneasy to say the least. And the regular/over-use of any substance is just a gigantic no-no for me.

Someone anti-choice, homophobic, or extremely religious is another a no-go for me, because those are big elements (or lack thereof in the religion respect, I suppose) of my life. A little religious would probably be okay with me, especially if it's something like buddhism or first nations spirituality, but atheist is preferable because that's what I can relate to most.

So overall, yeah, I think my standards are pretty high [Razz] The edges of some of them can be pushed/flexible, but basically they're just full-on deal-breakers. And I don't really think I'd say I'm too picky, or that I set the bar too high, because hey -- I don't want to settle, I want to date someone who really fits with me. It's not a bad thing just because it means I'll have fewer partners. Just means the few that I have will be well suited [Wink]

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Ronlak111
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It is not fair to break up from my friend. Force me to do something is not right way. If i am happy with this then ok but if i am not ready then let me go away.

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Rons

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klpowerschan
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After just about every relationship I walk away relising a new deal breaker. The three biggest are drugs, cigarettes, and eating disorders.
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Silverwing
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Substance abuse and gambling addiction are dealbreakers for me. I refuse to date anyone who would do that. I have seen what people who are using drugs or addicted to gambling could do to the people they "love" and I don't want to put myself through that.

Not respecting my sexuality and sexual experience is a dealbreaker for me. I understand that people are not all into the same things so I will not pressure anyone to do anything sexual that they are not comfortable with and I would hope they would extend that curtesy to me. This also includes minding my sexual relations with my previous sex partners and minding the fact that I am not a virgin. My sexual experience is a part of me, if they do not accept me as I am, then I do not believe they are worth my time.

Being abusive or not respectful is a dealbreaker for me. I believe everyone needs to be treated with respect and I don't want to date anyone who doesn't respect me as an equal. This includes sexism, racism, ageism, etc.

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robot_on_fire
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-physical abusers
If they try to hit me or get violent

-substance abusers
any kind of addiction

-Close minded
rascist, homophobic

-possessive
commanding, threatening

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Atonement
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Probably the biggest deal breaker for me is someone who believes that a man's authority ranks higher than a woman's.

Drug and alcohol use is also a big thing. I've just never been comfortable with it, and now that I'm in the medical field, I really can't afford any "guilty by association" drug charges on my record.

While I certainly don't like homophobia, racism is a HUGE issue with me. I'm half Hispanic, and my ex used to tell "Mexican jokes". He didn't understand why I got so offended, because I'm not Mexican Hispanic. And unfortunately where I live a racist attitude toward Mexicans is pretty prevalent.

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Heather
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I should have included up there:
- people I'm earnestly just not completely into
- people who are earnestly just not completely into me

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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eryn_smiles
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quote:
Originally posted by Heather:
I should have included up there:
- people I'm earnestly just not completely into
- people who are earnestly just not completely into me

But, by which point in the relationship/dating would you expect to know whether you're not completely into them or vice versa? Isn't it reasonable to start off a little unsure?

Sorry if that's a random question. It just feels to me like I've only been in dating situations where either or both of us are not earnestly completely into each other. I find it hard to know how long to feel it out and when to end it.

[ 05-04-2010, 03:01 AM: Message edited by: eryn_smiles ]

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"Caring for myself is not self-indulgence, it is self-preservation and that is an act of political warfare."

Audre Lorde

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Heather
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When I know either is the case.

Sometimes I'll know one or both of those things pretty soon or while casually dating (or being friends), other times that will become clear over time during a relationship. I don't have any expectation of knowing that at any given point in time. But if I don't feel a strong mutuality in that when dating, I don't tend to keep dating that person, seems a waste of both of our time.

But when I know or feel pretty certain that's the case -- and when it's about another person, it's something I'd tend to just ask directly -- that's when it's become a dealbreaker.

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Animica
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I'd say the dealbreakers for me would be:

-Substance abuse, whether alcohol or drugs. Drugs aren't (and never will be) okay for me, and I only approve alchohol consumption in moderation. I wouldn't be able to put up with someone who is drunk all the time.

-Any type of discrimination. I firmly believe that humans should all be treated with respect, regardless of gender, race, sexual orientation/identity, religious beliefs (or lack thereof), appearance, and/or disabilities. Having been teased throughout my life due to my short height, I don't approve of rejecting people just because they think different and are different. I very much disapprove of chauvinism and the idea that women can't get as far as men can.

-Cheating and lying. I consider myself a very committed and faithful person, so if my partner cheats on me, I'd probably find it extremely hard to forgive him (or maybe I'd forgive him, but he wouldn't easily get a second chance). I find it very hard to truly trust someone in the first place, so any betrayals are very, very hard to get over.

-Violent or threatening behavior. Being a mostly pacific person, I'd hate to be in a relationship where I felt threatened or was physically or emotionally abused.

-Lack of respect of my choices/opinions. Anyone who strongly resents any of my decisions and opinions is not the person for me. I like to be listened and I like to listen, so I'm open to new ideas, so long as they are expressed with respect.

-Dependence. Any guy who depends on me for everything certainly can't stand up for himself and can never make me happy, so that's out of the question.

-Oh yes, and smoking. I have friends that smoke, yes, but I wouldn't even consider dating someone who smokes. It's a dealbreaker and a turn-off.

That's all I can think about for now. I guess my bar is set pretty high, but I have certainly met people who meet my standards, so I don't think I'm being unrealistic.

[ 05-04-2010, 10:48 PM: Message edited by: I.am.a.person. ]

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