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20 Things You Should Know Before Dating A Social Butterfly

20 Things You Should Know Before Dating A Social Butterfly

Social butterflies are a really special species. Dating one will require a level of tolerance not many people have, so if there’s someone you really like, prepare yourself to moving your limits. They live in a world of their own where being an extrovert and an introvert is possible at the same time; they have a lot of friends, but they aren’t close with anybody really; they date a lot, but usually don’t have a single relationship that lasted more than three months; and they tend to have a lot of talents, but not one of those are fully developed, except perhaps their social skills. Dating a social butterfly will get you way out of your comfort zone, so you need to brace yourself and do your homework.

1. They always hang out with a bunch of people

You can’t really expect from a social butterfly to devote their full attention to you, at least not in the beginning of your relationship. You really can’t get mad at them because they are surrounded by a lot of different people 24/7. Their attention needs to be deserved.

2. They like to be in the spotlight

You’ll easily be able to recognize a social butterfly if you just pay attention to which person is the center of a social group. They would do and say practically anything to be noted, so prepare yourself for the unexpected.

3. They change their mind quite often

In order to understand how they tick, pay attention to the way they plan their day – they tend to keep all of their options open until they are proposed with something they really like. So, if you don’t find what they say reliable, have in mind that their plans change by the minute.

4. They expect from everyone to have social skills

Dating a social butterfly usually means you’re on your own, and this doesn’t mean they don’t care – they just don’t realize that not everyone has social skills. That lack of empathy isn’t something they do on purpose; they just don’t realize what it’s like to be uncomfortable when surrounded with a lot of unfamiliar people. If you’re determined to really put an effort into this relationship, it’s probably time to learn how to develop your social skills.

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5. They tend to be irresponsible

Considering the fact that even they don’t really know what kind of obligations they have during the day, a real responsibility can easily slip from their mind. You can’t really expect from a social butterfly to have a serious career, because they are already devoted to maintaining a certain lifestyle – the show must go on!

6. They are extraordinarily spontaneous

If your life was steady and quite until now, prepare yourself for a major lifestyle change. There’s no point in trying to resist them, and if you just go with the flow, you’ll have a lot – and I mean a lot – of stories to tell.

7. They like to experiment with everything

Whether it’s about fashion, haircuts, gadgets, music or jobs, be sure they either tried it or they plan on trying it. And, social butterflies will push whatever they are experimenting with – at least until they become good at it, because then it becomes boring.

8. They will expect from you to appreciate their sense of humor

You two can’t really work if you don’t laugh at a social butterfly’s jokes. It’s important to understand that they live of feeding with laughs. When you get there, it will be pretty simple, especially because they are usually hilarious.

9. They have occasional depressions

With so many different things happening in their lives, they occasionally get tired. When that happens, they feel alone, and that is when waves of depressions come along. It’s probably best to give them space and let them fight it – you can be positive that this isn’t the first time in a social butterfly’s life when they are struggling with who they actually are. However, if you notice that they have more than just a few signs of depression, you should jump right in and do your best to help.

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10. They tend to be artistic

One of more than just a few talents they poses will be related to at least one form of art, you can be sure of that. Considering the fact they have a lot of experience in completely different areas, it’s natural they have a need to express it someway.

11. They are great adventurists

Social butterflies tend to consider their lives to be a real life movie, with a theme song and everything. So, if you get neglected because of something you think is less important, believe me, they don’t look at things from your angle, because they’ll leave everything for an exciting adventure.

12. They need support even though they appear to be really confident

All of these characteristics create a strong figure that’s daring and confident, but that’s not the whole truth. The greatest bond you can make with a social butterfly is through support, so make sure you show a lot of it, even though you sometimes consider it isn’t necessary.

13. They have a really busy schedule

One day of a social butterfly is equal to several days of a regular person – they get up early and they stay out really late. Scheduling a date with them may sometimes feel like making an appointment with your dentist, but that’s just another part of their personality.

14. They have a big ego

You need to be very, very careful when you want to criticize a social butterfly. If you strike a nerve that’s not to be touched, you can expect not to get your calls answered for a couple of days. However, if you’re lucky to hear from them, they will undoubtedly hold a grudge and expect an apology.

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15. They have a lot of expectations from the person they date

When dating a social butterfly, you need to be able to understand everything they do without too much talking. And not only that, be sure they’ll expect from you to be resourceful, cunning and prepared for whatever they have prepared for you.

16. They have no regards for the consequences

If each day of your life was filled with various happenings and unexpected turns of events, I’m sure you wouldn’t have enough time to think things through fully either. They are more in a deal-with-consequences-when-they-arrive kind of mood, than comes planning and being responsible.

17. They have a lot of different interests

It can be impossible to keep track of everything a social butterfly likes. Also, you may be surprised with how contradictory their interests may be – football and tango, reading and developing apps, photography and philosophy – practically anything goes.

18. They like to enjoy various privileges

Every social butterfly enjoys demonstrating their influence, but they do it subtly. For example, they always have a table waiting for them in a bar, they are asked to cut long lines and they can ask for favors in the strangest places. Pretty cool, huh?

19. They take their appearance seriously

Don’t get surprised when you find out how much time your social butterfly spends in front of the mirror or in the gym. The world is their stage, so if you’re not a fashionista, it’s definitely time to learn about different styles and how to pull them off, without spending a small fortune in order to look good all the time.

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20. They are dangerously easy to fall in love with

You need to be really careful, because they are capable of sweeping you off your feet without even being aware of that fact. Take things slow, try not to get too attached and your relationship have real chances to actually work.

I hope you’ll find my pointers insightful, and that they will get you closer to understanding what a social butterfly is all about. It will take some serious effort and a lot of devotion, but if you think you can handle it, it will all be worth it. Good luck!

Featured photo credit: Young vintage hipster pretty couple having fun outdoor in summer on the street in city with cool bicycle behind white wall. Man with girl in spring urban style via shutterstock.com

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Published on April 7, 2021

6 Signs Of A Controlling Person To Be Aware Of

6 Signs Of A Controlling Person To Be Aware Of

Some of the most manipulative people are so good at what they do that their words and actions can convince you into thinking they truly care about what’s best for you when in reality, it’s quite the opposite. The most common signs of a controlling person are rarely obvious to outside observers. And for someone enmeshed in a controlling relationship or friendship, it can be incredibly challenging to stay away from this toxic person, even if you’re aware of their emotionally abusive tendencies.

While it’s ultimately up to you to decide whether to preserve or leave a lopsided, unfulfilling relationship, it’s nevertheless critical to understand the following six signs of controlling people so you can better advocate for yourself and mitigate the influence of their manipulative tendencies in your own life.

1. They Push Their Own Personal Agenda

Do you know someone who always tries to micromanage the words, behaviors, and attitudes of people around them? Does this person act like they have the right to know anything they want about you, including your location, what you’re doing in a given moment, who you’re talking to online, or any other private information about you? And when planning events and special occasions, does this person dominate conversations, steer plans in their own preferred directions, disparage others’ suggestions, and refuse to collaborate with anyone who might disagree with them?

If you answered “yes” to some of the above questions, then those are clear signs of a controlling person whom you absolutely need to be cautious around. Controlling people are reluctant to even consider alternative ideas, let alone enthusiastically work with people who have differing views. They prefer to be the captain of every ship—regardless of how much or how little an issue personally impacts them—and they have an arsenal of manipulative tactics to deploy if someone stands in the way of them achieving their own personal agendas.

In long-term relationships with controlling people, you may feel constantly pressured to meet their demands, follow their schedule, and focus on whatever they feel is most important. It’s not an exaggeration to say that these people act like the universe revolves around them, which can be exhausting to deal with for their family members, friends, and colleagues.

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2. They Make Everything Transactional

Controlling people aren’t always self-centered, but they’re not too empathetic either. Empathy for them tends to appear in the form of strategic concessions they use as a means to get what they want. They typically view interpersonal relationships as transactional opportunities to extract more value from people surrounding them, which can have a draining effect on those they interact with.

For example, one sign of a controlling person may be their insistence on “keeping score.” This can involve doing nice things for you with the ulterior motive of demanding something from you at a later date in exchange for what you thought was just an act of kindness or a friendly support.

Perhaps they shower you in praise (also known as “love-bombing”) or gifts then blow up at you if you don’t intuitively know they’re expecting something back from you. None of us are mind-readers, but controlling people behave as though everyone else should think and act like they want others to and those who fall out of line are punished for failing to meet their impossible expectations.

A controlling person may also threaten to withhold support if you don’t adhere to their demands, but they do so in such subtle ways that the guilt they impose blinds you from the unreasonable nature of their behaviors.

Some statements to be wary of include:

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  • “I did ___________ for you. What do you mean you can’t do ___________ for me?”
  • “Remember how I helped you with ___________? That took a lot of time and energy from me, but I guess you didn’t appreciate my help.”
  • “I always give you ___________. Don’t you care about my needs too?”
  • “You’re so selfish!” or “You don’t care about me at all!” (gaslighting if you respond with hesitation or politely decline their request for help for perfectly valid reasons, such as not having enough time or resources to assist them)

3. They Criticize Everything

One of the most common telltale signs of a controlling person is their capacity to criticize anything and everything, even small things that seemingly don’t matter. As with many toxic traits in relationships, these problems typically start out so small that you may not even notice. At first, you may even agree with their criticism or at least be able to understand their perspective when they bring up an issue.

However, the criticism tends to get more intense, more constant, and more perplexing for people who maintain relationships with controlling people. You’ll likely notice how they rarely seem to criticize something they do. It’s almost always other-oriented and these types of people are so manipulative that any rationale they offer can seem plausibly legitimate.

Some warning signs of a controlling person who’s overly critical to the point of abusiveness include:

  • Criticizing things about you that you have little to no control over (e.g., appearance, disability, family)
  • Criticizing your personal choices and interests, such as educational pursuits, career, clothing, favorite music, time spent on your hobbies, etc.
  • Punishing you for expressing vulnerability by invalidating thoughts and feelings you share with them
  • Attacking you whenever you express an opinion counter to theirs

4. They Balk When Someone Criticizes Them

We all know the adage, “what goes around, comes around.” But this statement doesn’t apply as much to toxic, controlling people. They’d much prefer to dish out criticism without ever having to take it in return.

For instance, if your friend constantly talks about your appearance with little regard for your emotions but flips out if you make just a single comment about their appearance, there’s a possibility that they could have some hidden controlling tendencies left unchecked. Remember, these people aren’t just controlling in their behaviors towards others. They’re also actively trying to stay in complete control over every aspect of their lives, which includes how others view them.

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This seemingly insatiable desire for control can prompt them to lash out against even the smallest bits of criticism, leaving people around them too weary or scared to speak up again in the future. While it’s possible they may suffer from something called rejection sensitivity dysphoria, this does not excuse them from the consequences of their words and actions. They should seek professional help to better manage their reactions to criticism.

5. They Socially Isolate You

Not all controlling people do this, but for manipulative narcissists, socially isolating victims is a go-to strategy for maintaining control because it’s effective at preventing people from truly understanding how toxic their partner, family member, or friend is treating them. Think of it this way—if you don’t talk to many other people in your life, there’s less of a risk that you’ll damage their reputation by revealing their abusive tendencies.

Socially isolating others also gives the person more control over you and your life as it becomes more difficult to break away from them if you don’t have other healthier channels of communication and interpersonal support to turn to.

This process doesn’t happen overnight, nor is it something you can readily recognize as abusive. At first, it may seem reasonable, such as asking you to stop engaging so often with family members with whom both of you disagree on major social or political issues. As the social isolation progresses, they may suggest cutting people out of your life—especially if they don’t like that person, regardless of how you personally feel—or even conjure up high-stakes problems like “it’s me or them” under the guise of saving you from people in your life whom they don’t like for whatever reason.

In a controlling person’s life narrative, they’re always the protagonist who’s incapable of any wrongdoing. The blame is always redirected at someone else, whether that’s you or other people in your life. The more they isolate you from other supportive people in your life, the more susceptible you’ll be to falsely believing that they’re right and you “don’t need” your other friends and family when you have someone as perfect as this person.

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6. They’re Emotionally Abusive

It’s hard enough to be in control of your own emotions but when someone else is constantly belittling you and your interests or leveraging guilt and shame to manipulate you into saying or doing what they want, this can make it even more challenging to stay in control of your own life and emotional well-being.

Emotional abuse is another sign of a controlling person that is often overlooked in relationships. After all, human personalities vary widely in terms of passivity, and it’s not uncommon for one person in a relationship to be significantly more passive than the other. This becomes an issue when the controlling partner or friend exudes signs of emotional abuse, which can start subtly and become much more pronounced over time.

Concerning signs of emotionally abusive language or behavior to watch out for include:

  • Dismissing your needs and/or belittling your interests in counterproductive ways
  • Privately or publicly shaming or humiliating you
  • Making you feel as though you can never live up to their expectations or do anything right (according to their own vague, subjective standards)
  • Gaslighting you into thinking they said or did something that never actually happened (making you question your own reality)

Final Thoughts

It’s sometimes hard to see the negative things about someone with whom we have a relationship. We may sometimes unconsciously overlook the signs of a controlling person, especially if that person is someone we have known for a long time or are close to us. However, cutting them off your life is the best thing you can do for yourself. Just watch out for these six signs of a controlling person and take immediate action when you spot them.

More Tips on How To Deal With a Controlling Person

Featured photo credit: Külli Kittus via unsplash.com

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