Ok, if you’re reading this article, you already suspect you may be in a toxic relationship. Or what a ‘certain someone’ thinks is a relationship. Perhaps it’s new, perhaps it’s old…but either way, you better figure out whether you’re in a real-life version of Fatal Attraction before your beloved bunny comes up missing, so read on for the top 10 signs….
1. She’s Like, Uber-Intense
Beware of the girl who is over the top about absolutely everything in her life. She tells crazy stories, experiences all the emotions within a 60-second commercial and goes from happy to crazy-witch mad over the littlest things.
Stalkers often create imaginary scenarios and even relationships in their heads, and if she’s out of touch with reality, you’ll find yourself frequently wondering why the hell she’s acting like a crazy person half the time – it’s because she is.
2. She Shows Up When She’s Not Wanted
Stalker Betty likes to show up unannounced and uninvited to your house or work, and often when she knows you’re busy doing something else. If you didn’t tell her about your other plans, she’s probably following your every move, so see #5.
She may show up when you’re on a date with someone else, have a work lunch scheduled or even a family dinner going on at your place. It’s all in an effort to glean attention from you, and hoping to meet your family or coworkers, or lay claim to something that isn’t hers in front of another woman.
3. She’s Your #1 Social Media Follower
It’s quite common to follow and friend even the most casual acquaintances. But it might not be such a good thing when you’re dealing with a possible stalker. If she’s the first one to like everything you post and comment on every photo you post, unfriend and block that girl right now.
She is trouble and has nothing better to do than create virtual photo boards of your future home and children, plus she probably already has nursery furniture picked out and on layaway.
4. She Sends You Unwanted and Inappropriate Gifts
If the girl is sending you gifts “just because” and you aren’t in a relationship, run for the hills. Some stalkers will go so far as to send pornographic and other embarrassing gifts to your doorstep or workplace just to make it appear you have a physical relationship going on with the girl behind it. She’s just flexing her power muscles and hopes that it will endear you to her, but you need to tell her to take a hike.
5. She Conveniently “Bumps Into You” Everywhere
Coincidentally running into her might happen once. Maximum twice. Anything more than that is absolutely, unequivocally planned by her.
Unless, of course, you are in class with her or work in the same office. But if she’s prancing down the cereal aisle while you’re trying to decide between Fruit Loops and Cocoa Pebbles, and then again when you’re picking up your suit from alterations in the men’s department at the mall…. she is absolutely following you, buddy.
6. She Invades Your Personal Space
Nobody likes a close talker. Same goes for over-hugging and being unable to carry on a conversation without touching you, like she’s one shot from falling on the floor into a puddle of “I can’t hold myself up anymore.”
Being clingy is one thing, but if she takes it up a notch and couples it with other warning signs we’re listing here, she’s probably stalker-ish.
7. She Threatens to Hurt You or Herself
Ok, all joking aside…nevermind. This is just illegal and should set off every alarm in your brain that screams you should run. If she threatens you, call the police and file a report. If she threatens herself, call the police and file a report. Then tell that toddler to leave you alone and never come back again, cuz she’s not welcome on your playground anymore.
8. She Plays the Hero
Stalkers just loooove to play the hero, and this can surface in a variety of ways. She might conveniently show up when you need a ride or she’ll happen to be available to dogsit while you’re away on business, even though you didn’t ask for her help.
Because heroes shouldn’t need to be asked, so they will offer it unabashedly. If she isn’t wearing a cape and you’re pretty sure she can’t laser beam you to death with her eyeballs, GET RID OF HER.
9. She Knows Things She Shouldn’t
If you just started talking to or dating the girl and she knows things about your past and family and friends that you haven’t personally discussed with her, you can be sure that she’s stalking you online.
If she knows you have two sisters and your best friend is a girl, she also knows how many drinks you had before you drove home last Friday night and how much your lunch bill was yesterday.
10. Your Gut Says Something’s Not Quite Right
Like everything else in life, listen to your gut. If you feel anxious when you’re around her, can’t wait to get off the phone with her, or you have more questions than answers and too many WTFs, you need to steer clear, my friend.
Stalkers don’t take hints very well, either, so you’ll have to man up and just tell her you’re not into her and you don’t want any contact from her again. Then prepare yourself for the intense reaction and possible threats to follow…
Stalkers are often just that because they have a serious mental imbalance and the improper idea of what a relationship should look like. Whether they realize it or not, it’s really a power play that helps them feel in control of the situation and everything you do. If they’re not, they will try to manipulate the situation or create one that makes them feel like they’re the one in power.
It’s quite possible the stalking was started as a catfishing scheme by her, and once you get to know her in real life she’s not what she seemed to be. This is another reason it’s ill-advised to take home the unknown from the bar on Friday night or hook up with anyone you just met online. Save the sleepover for a girl you’re pretty sure won’t bring a moving van to the second date, and revise your screening process so you stop attracting the crazies.
Stalkers often create imaginary scenarios in their head about your relationship together and are so off-kilter that they truly believe your relationship is much more serious than it really is. Every bit of attention, communication and online interaction you have with her only feeds the beast, so knock it off. Just make sure you’re always honest about what you want and upfront with her, and do your best to make a clean break.