OPINION | Dating alarm bells you shouldn't ignore

So, if you had have asked me what an “alarm bell” was a few years ago, I probably would have stared at you blankly and assumed that it was lunchtime.

The truth is, I’m shocking when it comes to alarm bells when dating.

It’s a muscle I’ve had to work at just like a bicep curl and, let’s face it, who likes doing bicep curls? BUT it’s good for you.

I like to see the good in people, even if there’s something fishy about them.

Face tattoos are apparently a dead giveaway.

Here are a few other things to look out for and avoid.

Too many messages

I know, I know. This sounds so weird because if you really liked someone, wouldn’t you want to text constantly?

I’m just saying to scope the vibe. If they’re triple texting you constantly or EVEN WORSE he’s sending ‘??’ when you haven’t replied straight away – run.

And if you’re like me and suffer from rage blackouts, you might end up throwing your phone across the room if you get more than three messages in a row. Phones are expensive, be careful.

In fact, make that too many phone calls as well

There was a guy who would actually call me ON THE TELEPHONE.

Actually, he would call my iPhone, but it felt so old school.

I found this so endearing. I thought he was such a gentleman.

However, he started calling me four times a day (as well as texting) it was actually driving me insane.

I’m a radio announcer so, of course I love a good chat, but I would literally start telling him the cycle of washing my hair and how many pre-frozen meals I had left in my freezer and did he know hummus was 2 for 1 at the moment?

I had started scraping the bottom of the barrel for conversation and it would literally start to panic me when his name popped up on the screen.

You saw something weird on his socials

You know when all your friends are huddled around your phone Facebook stalking a potential date?

This is very valuable (and admit it, everyone does it!).

Why waste your time with someone that may look like they might be in a relationship? Or someone that seems to be into recreational drug use when you’re not?

Or he shares quotes that say “trusting people has made me the jerk I am today”. Maybe you’re just an jerk.

He keeps cancelling

Maybe he has a valid reason.

Or maybe he doesn’t and he’s messing you around.

Regardless, remember your time is precious and if you’ve reworked your Sunday gym routine (or your Sunday be-hungover-as-hell routine) to fit in a coffee date with someone and they cancel last minute. That’s just rude!

They also might be really nervous to see you, which is kind of cute so this is a case by case situation.

But remember – IF YOU FLAKY, NO THANKY.

Go with your gut and trust nothing else!

I’ve let myself down with this a lot in the past. It’s hard to describe.

But I think you know deep down when something feels a little off. 

If your instincts are kicking in and you think you shouldn’t go, don’t go.

Riley-Rose Harper can be heard on radio station Hit 104.9 from 6-9am on weekdays.