Updated: April 22, 2021
Here’s a look at some of the classic love bombing signs. If you recognize some of these, it doesn’t necessarily mean your partner is toxic, but listen to your intuition if the person trying to woo you seems too good to be true.
1. They lavish you with gifts
Love bombing often involves over-the-top gestures, such as sending you inappropriate gifts to your job (dozens of bouquets instead of one, for example) or buying expensive plane tickets for a vacation, and not taking “no” for an answer.
2. They can’t stop complimenting you
We all crave admiration, but constant praise can make your head spin. If someone’s expressing their undying love after just a short amount of time, it’s a potential red flag that their feelings aren’t genuine.
3. They bombard you with phone calls
They call, text, and message you over social media 24/7. While being in constant communication is normal when you’re first dating, it’s a red flag if the communication feels one-sided and becomes increasingly overwhelming.
4. They want your undivided attention
When your focus isn’t on the other person, they might become angry. This can look like pouting when you’re on the phone with friends or refusing to leave after you say you have to be at work early the next day.
5. They’re overly needy
No matter how much time and access you give them, it never seems to be enough. But ask yourself: Are you bailing on friends because they can’t stand to be alone? Or do you feel obligated to answer every text because they gifted you that expensive iPhone?
6. You feel unbalanced
Being love bombed can feel intoxicating at first, but you might also feel a bit uneasy, waiting for the other shoe to drop. Pay attention to these anxious feelings, says Westbrook. “It’s important to be attuned to your intuition, so you can be informed instead of being carried away by love bombing tactics.”
7. The bottom line
If you’re in the early stages of a relationship and everything feels like it’s happening too soon, check in with your gut. Remember: Falling in love should be savored, not rushed. If you’re worried your partner has crossed into manipulative territory, try reaching out to a trusted friend, family member, or mental health therapist who can help you assess their behavior.
8. You’re overwhelmed by their intensity
They never turn down the charm and seem to be running on all cylinders when you’re with them. You never know what to expect from one moment to the next and feel pressured into seeing them round the clock.
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