People Share The Hallmark Warning Signs Of Predatory Behavior


Don't ignore the obvious red flags!!

Beware of your gut; nine and a half times out of ten it's NEVER wrong. People will always have shades of their true selves creep out no matter how hard they try to conceal it. Red flags and warning shots are meant to solidify survival, we have to use them when they're going off about other humans. Predators are everywhere... be alert.

Redditor u/Persephonie_357 wanted to spread the word on all the things we need to be looking out for when it comes to being aware of others by asking.... What are some warning signs of predatory behavior that you believe more people should be aware of?


My best friend is ticking a few of these flags, but this is the most blatant one. I'm a pretty big loner so I keep a tight friend group but anytime I make a new friend I've noticed that my best friend gets all questiony and finds some way to belittle them. I always just thought he was an elitist asshole, but now Because he has checked some of the other boxes off I am beginning to wonder if he is super manipulative in a bad way. MatisJohnhu


"you're mature for your age." thecnlyexception

The people saying this in this context are likely immature for their age. gamora_quill_


Putting on the "nice guy" image and doing everything they possibly can to convince you that they are nice and good, but they keep pressuring you, expecting "rewards" from you for their nice behavior, and expecting way too much from you. viking162


Repeatedly asking someone out even after being refused multiple times. OpportunityCostX

Asked a girl out like 3 or 4 times. She finally said yes, like 3 months into the relationship she completely changes and tells me that she felt pressured into dating me because i asked so many times. Absolutely wrecked me. canofpace


Word salad. When people pretend to explain something to you but instead of breaking it down and using language you understand they throw big jargons and examples you cannot relate to. It is meant intimidate you and render you powerless. It is only human nature to feel a little embarrassed when we could not understand certain things, if you stay silent to avoid embarrassment you fall for their trap.

People who are skilled at this also know the more scrambled info they throw at your brain the more overwhelmed and vulnerable you get, so you may eventually breakdown and do what they want you. I have had many experience with this with people who are supposed to have my best interest. HR, people I am getting into business deal with, bankers, lawyers. Wait, never mind those are not people who are supposed to have my best interest. broken_bowl_


"Things don't add up" is a major red flag.

I once had an extremely long-winded argument with a "friend" that was bookended by the statements "I didn't lie to you, I just didn't tell you the truth" and "besides, you can't be upset with me for lying to you, because you lied to me first. "

There were about 20 steps between the 2 statements, half them mutually inconsistent. I stopped paying attention somewhere around step 3.

At the point where people start telling me things that don't "add up" in the slightest sense (I didn't lie to you, and besides you lied to me first) I'm 99% positive that I'm dealing with someone who cares more about how they come out than anything to do with me.

Past a certain point, the "truth" behind the argument becomes entirely secondary to the fact that for the other person, the truth is whatever serves their interests in the moment. Uniquenameofuser1


When someone seems like they're seeking approval from people by demonstrating a lack of compassion or empathy.

Example: I knew a guy who would periodically tell me things like "I saw a car parked in two spots, like the white line was directly underneath their car, so I ran up and kicked a huge dent in the side of it." And he told it to me like, "I showed them right? They'll probably think twice before parking wrong again right?"

My response was, "How do you know they weren't in a panicked rush because their spouse called them saying something was wrong with their kid or something like that? Maybe they had to hurry for some kind of emergency and they were coming right back out?" And that just did not compute with him. He was so happy about what he did.

He later confessed to me that he murdered someone over a cellphone, and had the same "you think I'm cool right?" tone to his voice, like he desperately needed my approval. I tried to tell the police but they didn't give a shit, I couldn't even get a detective to talk to or anything. rmatherson


Being way too keen to establish themselves as a victim; giving a personal sob story before it's appropriate or necessary. scar_daddy

So true. Abusive people often see or at least portray themselves as the biggest victim – even while they're hurting someone else. No empathy for you, they just want you to feel for them. dark_blue_7


Not taking "no" for an answer.

I feel like everybody should watch "Colossal" for a fantastic portrayal of a guy who *seems* nice but is in fact a turd...right from the start. And it starts with him refusing to take no for an answer when he offers her a lift. TheDevilsAdvokaat


Forcing favors on you when you are clearly uncomfortable and/or specify it isn't necessary/ no thank you/ etc...

It's a guilt trip and a way to lure you into feeling you owe them. It's a way to make you doubt yourself too; "what's wrong with you? Hasn't anyone ever been nice to you?" So you feel like gee maybe this really is what nice is. Maybe this is what a mature relationship is.

And now they've got you. You'll defer to them as to what the boundaries are, and they always get to push you to give more of yourself (time, attention, whatever) because look at what they freely offer you! Ladyughsalot1


Invading your personal space and not moving when they know it's making you uncomfortable. StormzysMum

Had a coworker and he would get incredibly close to me and when I told him that it made me uncomfortable he would get offended. I was 20 at the time and I was a lower rank than him so after the third time telling him to give me space he flipped out again and made sure to tell the entire company that I was a drama starter.

I stopped tell him that it made me uncomfortable so people would back off. So he started to do it again and it slowly started to escalate. First his hand on my shoulders, then my waist, and then he would just feel free to grab at me in certain areas. Of course I would push him off and walk away but he never stopped. princesspotato92


Swooping in when people are emotionally vulnerable: funerals, divorces, depression, etc.

I knew a guy in university who profited from the funerals of a friend of ours and of his girlfriend's dad. I only attended the first funeral, where he turned all the focus on himself, making up stories in the eulogy to seem closer to our dead friend.

His girlfriend told me about the other funeral. He apparently did the same thing and they broke up shortly after.

And my mom got a ton of invitations from friends who were psychics and MLM salespeople when my parents got divorced. They figured that a woman in her situation would be more willing to give them money for palm readings, aura readings, kitchenware, lotion, etc. dexterpine


Possessiveness, needing you to respond all the time or tell them where you are and when. This might seem obvious but I've played it off as, "Oh he cares!" artemississipi

I do this with my husband. I start stressing out that he's hurt if he doesn't answer. I hate my behavior, because I know it's not healthy for me to feel such stress just because I don't have tabs on him 24/7. It's definitely PTSD/abandonment issues from my past but he didn't do these things to me, so he shouldn't suffer my anxiety. I just don't know how to lessen my internal emotions. greenidsurprise


Easy one to miss is people talking in generalities. They are trying to emotionally manipulate you. Example: "Everyone thinks your a loser but not me." Always consider statements in generalities as the person speaking's opinion only. ThirdRepliesSuck


One of the biggest warning signs for predatory behavior is actually internal rather than external. If you grew up in an abusive environment, you likely (consciously or unconsciously) developed a set of coping mechanisms to handle that environment. Then even after you leave the environment, if you encounter a predatory or abusive person, there's a high probability that those coping mechanisms will kick in and you will respond to them in a manner that is noticeably different (and likely seems more tolerant or even welcoming) than other people, which in turn will cause them to feel drawn to you and more comfortable being abusive towards you. So learning to recognize your own psychology and change your behavior will go much further in keeping abusive people out of your life than simply learning to spot them in the wild. abunchofsquirrels


I was treated like crap by my family and my philosophy is I want to be there for people even when they treat me like crap because I can only control what I do, and I wonder how much of that is empathy/caring for others and how much of it is taking my home life and rationalizing it into a philosophy. There's nothing wrong with helping others or realizing you can only control what you do but it still seems obviously correlated to me. stoked4ever


Love bombing. Classic trait of a narcissist. I'd never heard of it until I started googling red flags in a relationship. Elegant_righthere


If you realize you walk on eggshells around them. You avoid saying things because you don't want to upset them or start an argument. In the beginning you might not even realize what you're doing and you just brush it off. Don't brush it off. agbmom


Cutting off the friendship group. My ex best friend's boyfriend came off as super sweet. Shy and charming so she was smitten. Then, very slowly he basically broke her away from our friendship group by making comments like "Oh they're jealous you're not single anymore and they still are." and that we were creating waves over nothing. We saw loads of red flags from the start and we tried pointing it out to her but by that point it became pretty obvious she was wrapped around his finger. IrritatedMango


Ooooh boy do I know a few.

  1. Invading personal space (or unnecessary touching).
  2. Following you to places you go to often/asking where you're going all the time.
  3. Trying to get you alone.
  4. Aggression towards friends or animals.
  5. Giving you no options/holding things over your head (black mail or embarrassment).
  6. Being kind around your family but rude to others All these are things I've experienced from stalkers, and predators in the past. succ_the_boba


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