Technology has changed the way in which a lot of us work, socialize, and date. While there are benefits to this technology, there’s are also plenty of challenges, like the prevalence of an well known behavior that now has a new term: “cushioning.”
What is cushioning?
At worst, cushioning can be outright cheating on an exclusive partner or it can be flirtatious texting back and forth with new eligible singles. The people you're flirting with, aka the “cushion”, soften a fall should you break up with your significant other.
While the idea of “cushioning” a relationship has been around since dating began, the speed with which we make decisions and access new potential partners has seemed to compound this problem, making cushioning part of a “Netflix and Chill” lifestyle.
Protect yourself from cushioning.
You deserve better than to be cushioned. Here are some red flags:
1. Secretive about who they’re talking to via text or social media.
2. Hot and cold behavior - one moment you’re the center of the world, the next they’re too busy.
3. Evasive about giving you their physical whereabouts.
4. Tendency to cancel plans last minute, often with vague and sometimes dramatic excuses (“my grandma’s in the hospital”).
5. Won’t call when they say they will.
6. Won’t introduce you to friends or family.
Trust your gut. Your intuition is trying to help you. When you feel blown off and manipulated, you probably are.
Please remind yourself you can do better than this. A person who is truly interested in you will invest in time and energy in you, and follow up on plans.