When does flirty become creepy?

So you’ve finally plucked up the courage to talk to your crush? Well done! That’s step one out of the way. But don’t start planning your honeymoon just yet…

Successful flirting is always a two-person dance. You could be Casanova, but if the vibe isn’t flowing both ways, you need to know when to back away.

Recognising when it’s time to bow out gracefully can be tricky, especially when you’re really into someone and really want to make it work. Don’t worry – we’ve got you covered. Watch our video to help you figure out when flirty is becoming creepy and to avoid any unnecessary awks.

If you’re worried that you're becoming creepy, pause and take a second to assess the vibe. Try asking yourself these three questions:

1. Are they paying me attention?

  • How is the conversation flowing? Is it easy and natural, or does it feel forced?
  • Are they answering your questions with detailed answers (good!) or one-word statements (not so good)?
  • Are they asking you questions back and showing that they’re interested in getting to know you?

2. Are they making eye-contact and smiling?

  • If your object of affection feels comfortable and is enjoying your company, their face will let you know. Lots of cheeky eye-contact and a beaming smile is a good thing!

3. What’s their body language like?

  • When people are uncomfortable, they’re more likely to cross their arms or legs, tilt their bodies away, look away or even turn their back on you. These are clear barrier signals that show they’re not interested. If you’re getting these signals, make sure you give them more personal space.

As former Love Islander Joshua Richie says:

Take a step back, chill, be calm and composed, don’t pressurise the conversation, just go with the flow.

It's worth noting that while these pointers should help you work out the best way to flirt, we should be mindful that these aren't universally true, for all people. For example, some autistic people have trouble reading social cues or may express themselves differently to others. Like anyone else, most autistic people want to make friends and form relationships but can find it difficult.

And remember, it takes two to tango. If the person you are flirting with says no, or leaves, don’t push it, be respectful and take the hint.

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When does flirty become creepy?