User Of This Online Group Asked Others “What Is Something Subtle People Say That Is A Red Flag To You?” And Here Are 55 Eye-Opening Answers

Throughout time, people start to see signs of others being manipulative or inconsiderate. Having this in mind, Reddit user u/neilnelly asked people “What is something subtle people say that is a red flag to you?” The post User Of This Online Group Asked Others “What Is Something Subtle People Say That...

It takes some time to get to know another person. And it’s not only about what they do and what they like, but also how they interact with you and others. Some small, insignificant comments or remarks can actually have a hidden meaning and reveal that someone you know does not necessarily have good intentions. Throughout time, by getting to know others better and by gaining experience, people start to see signs of others being manipulative or inconsiderate. Having this in mind, Reddit user u/neilnelly asked people “What is something subtle people say that is a red flag to you?”

This gave a green light for other users to share what they find annoying and alarming about other people’s behavior, from people complimenting others just to achieve personal gain to imposing their own views on others when it’s unwanted. Here is the list of 55 things people say to trick you into something that should be taken into account as these are some major red flags.

What are other obvious signs you know that people use to trick or deceive others? Leave your thoughts in the comments down below!

More Info: Reddit


I used to go to the bar after work with coworkers. One of the managers didn’t go, but a coworker kept encouraging him to come out and party. He relented and said he’d come out for one drink. At the bar, he took a sip and said “ah, I haven’t had a beer in 5 months”. No one else took notice of that, but it struck me. He was gone a week later after coming into work drunk and doing something inappropriate.

To anyone reading this: If someone doesn’t want to drink, accept no for an answer. They might have a very good reason to say no, and pressing them on it, especially when well intentioned, might make it much harder for them to say no.

Image credits: BelowDeck


Idk if this is one, but when people say things like “I can say and do whatever I want” “it’s a free country. Ever hear of freedom of speech?” in order to justify s****y things they say or do. Like sure, you have the right to speak your mind, but people also have the right to judge you for what you say.

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It was just a joke. Where’s your sense of humor?

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Don’t be so sensitive (or something to that effect). Big warning sign that they A- don’t care about your feelings, and B- can’t take responsibility for their behaviour

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“I’m brutally honest” or some other excuse to be an unbearable person.

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“Ok fine I’m sorry happy?” That’s not an apology.

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Anything that exposes poor morals. For example, “I’ll just say I never got it so they send me another one.”

When people show you who they really are, believe them. Love this quote.

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If they wronged you and say something like, “I’m such a terrible person, you should leave me.” It’s them trying to force sympathy on them instead of genuinely apologizing to you. They’re not going to change if you stay.

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“Yeah, but YOU don’t act black.”

The f**k?

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I’m a guy but anytime I hear other guys say “friend zone” or “girls only date a**holes” or anything that sounds incel/misogynistic, I’m not going to be too fond of the person

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“I try to be more like my kids’ friend than their mom.”

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I’m not racist but

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Treating service staff poorly, then turning around and being disingenuous.

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I personally move away from people who constantly one up someone’s story or experience

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“I’m sorry you got offended by what I said.”

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When they disagree with someone, they default to attacking the person’s character instead of their actions. We all do this from time to time, but with some people it’s every time. The guy who messed up their order is “an idiot”. Their boss is “an evil sociopath”. The person on Facebook who expressed a political view that opposes theirs is “a degenerate”. That new intern at work is “hopeless”. In the end, the final result is that anyone they disagree with for any reason is either an inherently bad person who doesn’t really merit listening to.

Image credits: Celestaria


When people talk s**t on their spouses. Like even in the most subtle way it’s still not appropriate small talk. If it’s my best friend and she’s telling me about a hardship or a fight, different. But when I’m meeting you for the first time I shouldn’t be able to pick up that you dislike your spouse/SO.

Image credits: Unhappy-Addendum-759


“Sorry I did this and that, It’s just my inner zodiac sign.”

Like, your zodiac sign doesn’t define you, you’re just being a s****y person and using that phrase as a cover up.

Image credits: Tiredchopsticks


“I’m a nice guy” …. Sure you are. Why you gotta justify to me just show it.

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When they are the victim in all of their stories.

I had a colleague who didn’t really have any friends outside of work. All of her stories were about how each of her friends had stabbed her in the back at one time or another. She went travelling to Australia with 6 girls and left early because they didn’t want to do the things she wanted. It was glaringly obvious that she was the issue but still tried to play the sweet victim.

There is another girl from my high school who has gained quite a few followers on social media through sharing her stories of being bullied in school for being bald. No one can remember that ever happening, she was quite popular but had lost touch with her group as you do when you move away for college. Also, she was never bald.

Red flags when people enjoy pity.

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Making rude comments about homeless ppl and being rude to waitstaff

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Positive vibes only!

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“I just tell it like it is…”

Is a red flag for me personally.

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If you can’t handle me at my worst you don’t deserve me at my best.

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“I’m not (blank) but…(insert statement that affirms they are what they’re claiming not to be)

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If they compliment themselves often but rarely or never others, for me that’s an obvious narcissistic trait.

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Maybe this is nitpicky but people who give nicknames or use a shortened version of your name without asking if you mind it. It’s annoyed me my whole life and always seems to correlate with them not respecting more serious boundaries later on.

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But you’re so good at it. Aka I’ll compliment you in the hope that you’ll take this task off my hands.

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When they try to fish compliments. For example they say: ‘why am I so ugly?’

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my s/o wont let me do so & so

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“Well then I guess I’ll never do / buy / say / ask anything / (normal okay thing that isn’t actually the problem) ever again.”


Pretty much anytime somebody says something about themself when it’s not prompted or necessary.

Like “I’m an honest person”, “I’m a hard worker”, or “I’d never hit a woman”.

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Asking what music you listen to, then immediately critiquing it, especially when you like main stream stuff. (I guess this applies to stuff other than music but that’s what annoys me the most)

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“I know what I’m worth.” Especially in a romantic setting, OLD or first date type stuff. It’s good to have a strong sense of self but I’ve found when this exact phrase is stated/listed something ain’t right.


“I’m an empath” makes me want to get in my car and drive ten hours in the opposite direction while shoving wool in my ears.

My last roommate called herself an empath. Turned out to be a 30 year old emotionally abusive a** who let her dog s**t in our apartment. Empath my a**

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Anyone who tries to convince you that you can trust them.

“Come on man, you can trust me. I’d never do that to you.”

People who are actually trust worthy don’t need to convince anyone of anything and they also know that real trust isn’t freely given to people you barely know and are not offended when they are not given it.


“Can’t you just do it?” instead of wanting to learn something.


Starting an argument for no reason and then not having the capacity to resolve it.

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“That’s just the way God made me,” as an excuse for being a b***h or d**k. Like it’s just their personally and they can’t help it so we should all just accept it.

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When someone says “they’re my karma child” and implies their child makes their life so hard it must be payback for a mistake they made in the past. I usually discover this person has intense mental health or substance use history. It’s a s****y way of mentioning their disdain for their kid.

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“I’m always open to debate.”

I find most people that say that are open to lecture you, and closed to debate.


Less a direct statement and more of a behavior, but I find myself becoming less able to hang out with the people I know who seem to have no respect for any type of input I have on a subject, despite me trying to always at least entertain what they’re saying for the purpose of the discussion, even if it’s absurd.

I’ll have something to add, and they’ll seem to not even hear what I’ve said, either ignoring it all together or immediately dismissing it as incorrect, sometimes even using the same arguments I just said in explaining why what I just said is nonsense.

And on the occasion that I actually decide to go through the effort of defending my stance, they usually end it with some dismissive statement like “well that’s your opinion”. Yes, that is my opinion, and considering the fact that I have been sitting here listening to and showing respect towards, even if not always supporting, your opinion, I think would justify me in asking for the same basic respect.

This turned into a rant, and I’m sorry about that. To put it shortly, I guess I’d say when a person seems to have a lot of difficulty with you disagreeing with them, and never seems to even pretend they are giving your position any real thought beyond “no, you’re wrong because…” Then I’d say they aren’t your friend, and you should consider no longer trying to be theirs.


Try to say, “It could have been worse” (Or something to that affect) everytime they make a mistake. “Yeah, it could have been worse, but you still wrecked my car Rachel”


When I started my new job the bubbliest girl who was loved by most of the staff and was also a HR manager would act like this when me and her were totally alone.

She would whisper ever so softly (to herself but to me) “you get no thanks around here, no one cares. You just wait and watch the knives stabbing when you least expect it”. This is something she did on my first DAY!! I said to her everyone seems lovely and accepting and she said “well wait until you get to know them”.

This was a HR MANAGER!!

Edit I’ve just realised this isn’t very subtle

Also Edit! Seems like alot of people see this girls actions as good. I don’t, this was my first day and I really believe if people start talking about others they’re setting the tone for YOU to perceive the person they are gossiping about, it made me nervous, your first day is bad enough. I was there for 7 months and not one person showed any signs of being a backstabber. Not one! Nothing even remotely shady.

Image credits: Little_Hobbitt


Recently had someone tell me “I hate being accused of lying.” I’m sure we can all guess what he keeps getting caught doing…

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“With all due respect.”

I know a guy who says this so frequently that when he says it, I brace myself for the s**t to follow.

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Referring to women as “females”.


Someone who frequently, in response to you telling them about a bad or inconvenient thing that happened to you, start with “Well what you SHOULD have done…” or “What I would have done…” and then argue with your reasonings for not finding their solution helpful. These people tend to be very opinionated and stubborn, even in situations they don’t really know anything about. This is especially true if paired with a tendency to always win/have bad losing habits, are generally immature, or have a history of just not knowing what they’re talking about but just want to assert themselves in the conversation anyways

Edit: To those who do this to a fault, it’s a completely normal behavior! Sometimes it’s hard to not begin searching for solutions to a loved one’s problem. However it’s different when you do it excessively, or to the point of making the other person feel stressed or incompetent. I’m mostly talking about this when it’s accompanied by other red flags but can be a standalone depending on frequency/social context


You’ll know I like you when I make fun of every single thing you do maliciously.

Like wth

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Never asking a question. My husband realized his father never does this and now I can’t stop listening for this.

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“I’m not gay but this feels good”


‘My OCD…’ ‘She’s so bipolar!’ ‘MY ANXIETY!!!!’ Etc etc etc. Shut up forever.


“I haven’t cried since I was a kid”


“Does this smell like chloroform to you?”


I don’t have an addictive personality


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