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Eight Red Flag Phrases That Science Says Cripplingly Insecure Men Say


If you’re in a relationship where nothing seems to be going right and every argument makes you feel like it’s your fault, then your boyfriend is probably cripplingly insecure.

Now, psychologists have revealed eight red flags you may be missing that are dead on clues that your partner lacks confidence in themselves and your relationship.

These signs are phrases that can leave you feeling like you were wrong, such as «you’re too sensitive» or refusing to say «but» after saying «I’m sorry.»

By understanding the intentions of these science-based red flag comments, you can learn how to deal with the situation or ultimately kick it to the curb.

Your boyfriend could use eight comments to mask his insecurities, including telling you that you’re too good for him or that you’re «too emotional»

Red flags are forms of «gaslighting» that can make you question your feelings and help your partner avoid responsibility for their actions.

A 2019 study suggested that these kinds of phrases represent emotional abuse, which can be just as damaging to your psyche as physical abuse and can contribute to depression and low self-esteem.

1. ‘You’re too good for me’

This is just your boyfriend’s self-deprecating way of saying he has low self-esteem and doesn’t deserve your affection, says Global English Editing, an online editing and proofreading company.

This phrase can create an unhealthy balance in a relationship where he needs you to endlessly reassure him of his value and how much you care about him.

This could also affect your mental well-being because by constantly reassuring him, you are trying to fix his low self-esteem issues and ignoring your own needs and feelings.

2. «I don’t care what people think»

At first glance, this comment may seem like your friend is oozing confidence, but he may actually be saying it as a way to protect himself from criticism.

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This statement could act as a shield for his insecurities by deflecting comments before they are uttered so that they cannot hurt him.

In fact, when he tells you, «I don’t care what people think,» he may be implying that the opposite is true, and he’s clearly aware of people’s comments and criticism of him.

3. ‘I’m just being honest’

An insecure boyfriend may use this phrase to assert dominance and control over his partner and may use it to mask hurtful or negative comments.

It means you don’t handle what they say, you get too offended and shift the blame onto your shoulders.

Criticism can be used as a tool to feel better about your own faults by scapegoating the other person and deflecting those insecurities onto you.

This red flag can be a form of «gaslighting» that can make you question your feelings and help your partner avoid responsibility for their actions.

Gaslighters «are typically emotionally abusive people — often with low self-esteem — who want to control others rather than engage in mutually respectful relationships that require consideration, empathy, compassion and kindness,» Monica Vermani, a Canadian clinical psychologist, told ABC5 News. .

“They look for ways to undermine and overpower someone they fear losing, regardless of the damage to their target.

If your friend tells you,

If your friend tells you, «I’m sorry, but…», they’re probably putting some of the blame for the argument on you and trying to apologize without accepting responsibility for their actions.

4. ‘I’m sorry but…’

If you’ve had a fight or an argument with your boyfriend and he says, ‘I’m sorry but…’ as an excuse, it’s a telltale sign that he’s not sure and is going to put some of the blame on you.

This comment is used as a means of apologizing without fully accepting responsibility and partly to defend his actions.

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Some people may have difficulty admitting or admitting that they have made a mistake and may feel that they are exposing their weaknesses if they admit they were at fault.

«A gaslighting apology is a conditional apology that makes the person making the apology appear to be sincerely saying ‘I’m sorry,’ but taking no responsibility for hurting you,» Jamie Schenk DeWitt, psychotherapist and marriage and family therapist. he told Newsweek.

«They don’t think for a second that they’ve done anything wrong, and they suggest that it’s your problem that your feelings are hurt,» DeWitt said.

5. ‘I Was Just Kidding’

People often use banter as a way of communicating, relieving tension, or simply connecting with others, but when it’s used after a hurtful comment or criticism, it becomes a red flag.

When your insecure friend tells you, “I was just kidding” after a negative comment, it’s an attempt to avoid taking responsibility for the hurt you feel by lightening the mood.

If this comment is worded consistently, it might be time to address it so your mental health doesn’t suffer as a result of «jokingly» hurtful and disparaging comments.

6. ‘It’s not a big deal’

This is a surefire way to let go of your feelings by downplaying the problem you may have caused in the relationship.

An insecure man may use this phrase to shut down a discussion about his conditions while dismissing your feelings and concerns that you’ve confided in him.

It is likely that this stems from his insecurity, that he is unable to deal with criticism or conflict, and that he does not respect your feelings.

7. «You’re too sensitive»

Telling someone they are «too sensitive» is also a form of the familiar term, gaslighting – when someone makes you question whether you have a right to feel the way you do.

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Susan Trombetti, matchmaker and CEO of Exclusive Matchmaking, told InStyle: ‘It’s just a way to blow you up and make you think you’re crazy.’

It gives him the control and power over you that he may have felt he lacked in the relationship, exposing his insecurities and inability to accept responsibility for his actions.

This comment could make it difficult for you to stand up for yourself and feel validated in your emotions and could negatively affect your mental well-being.

8. ‘I’m Not Perfect’

Being imperfect and making mistakes is a fact of life and we accept that every day life is fine, but if you use it as an excuse it becomes a sign of your insecurity.

This phrase can be used to deflect blame, lower your expectations of him, or justify how he acted or reacted to a situation.

It keeps him from being held accountable for his actions and again invalidates your feelings.

How to respond to these eight red flags

When you find yourself in these situations, DeWitt told Newsweek, it’s wise to try to get out of the presence of someone who «will do whatever it takes to maintain their greatness and power at your expense.»

How you respond to these warning signs is ultimately up to you, but understanding the meaning of these frequent comments can help you understand how to foster more open communication in your relationship, or you can finally break free.

«Addressing these behaviors with your partner is absolutely necessary, and if they refuse to take responsibility or express a willingness to change, it may be time to reevaluate the relationship,» Samara Quintero, a licensed marriage and family therapist at Choosing Therapy, told Business Insider.

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