This list can apply equally to women as well as men. If the person you are with does any ONE thing on this list, put on your running shoes. If they do TWO or more things, lace those shoes up tight, and start RUNNING.
1. He does things to make you feel financially obligated to him, without your asking. For instance, you haven't known each other for a year and he pays off your car to surprise you. If you and this loser break up, you will definitely get a notice to appear in small claims court to repay this "loan".

2. "The Dangling Carrot". This person throws money around to hook you, and make you believe that he is a generous person. Watch closely and you will see his attitude about money change over the months and years that you know him. The moment you are "hooked" either by moving in together or getting married, all of a sudden he is concerned about expenses and you'll find yourself nickel-and-dimed at every turn.

3. When you get into an argument, he tells you to, "Read Machiavelli's 'The Prince' so you can learn to deal with assholes like me."

4. He constantly says that ALL women are psycho.

5. He sleeps constantly. In fact, he uses it--his need for sleep--as a regular excuse to miss meals, events and even quit work.

6. She/He engages and disengages without warning. For example, every time you take her out you have a great time and a lot of fun but then she barely returns your calls, or takes several days to return them. You end up calling first because you have fun together but you find yourself in a chase mode with no indication of whether or not she's willing to be caught. This is not courting, this is a game of control and dysfunctional interaction usually dominated by someone who has mental health issues. This person is good at yo yo-ing you're emotions and making you question yourself. Bottom line...they're users.

7. He admits to paying for and having sex with a prostitute. Quadruple red flag points if he admits he did it without a condom.

8. He hurts pets or talks about how he has hurt them in the past.

9. He directly endangers your life by driving drunk.

10.He has no hobbies other than watching TV

11.He (or SHE) tries to take you on as some sort of "project" and attempt to "improve" you, as if you need to be "fixed" and he/she's doing you some sort of favor.

12.Instead of being honest with you about how he feels, you find out that he (or SHE) ridicules you behind your back, even when you have expressed a preference for honesty.

13.He decides that something about your behavior is bothering him, but never tells you directly, as a friend would, giving you the chance to have an open discussion. Instead, he drops subtle hints, or does it in a roundabout fashion, like sending a letter to a publication he knows you read, hoping you'll see it. When you don't pick up on the clues, he gets angry.

14.You visit at his home or apartment and it has hardly any furnishings or curtains. You find out he didn't just move in - it's been like this for months or years. When you go on a date together he asks your opinion on curtains and sofas etc. He wants YOU to be the one who chooses the colour, décor and all the knick knacks and you have been dating for two weeks? Watch out! Men like this are searching for a mothering type to save them and fix them. Run now!

15.When you say you need space, he gets mad, and says, "Well, I thought we had a relationship WITHOUT boundaries..."

16.He says things like "You make me feel bad about myself" when you try to assert healthy boundaries.

17.He dumped his ex in an incredibly mean way - in front of her friends, or at their wedding, for example. Then tells you about it in great detail, with pride in his voice, expecting you to be impressed.

18.He doesn't like you talking about (or doesn't even let you talk about) any ex boyfriends/husbands, especially past sexual stuff

19.Complains about your clothes - that they are too tight, too revealing, etc. when they are really not.

20.You find key loggers on your computer or find him trying to get into your emails

21.He makes it clear that he doesn't want you talking about him to anyone else.

22.He vacillates from day-to-day or week to week as to whether he wants to be in a relationship or not.

23.He checks out personal stuff while you are still dating.. such as your bills laying around, notes, letters, stuff on your computer

24. He

wants to get you pregnant ASAP

25.He calls his mother everyday and for every thing that comes up in his daily life

26.He talks outside on the phone w/ his family, never around you

27.He never really talks about any ex's but does blame everything on them, they cheated, wanted $, etc.

28.He has ex wives that you find out about LATER

29.He doesn't like to go to social places like bars, where there are a lot of people and possible attention on you from other men

30.He refers to ex-girlfriends or wives with terms like "Bitch", "Cunt" or "Whore".

31.He gives you gifts, and takes them back when you get into a fight ( those aren’t gifts they’re his bargaining chips)

32. He

wants to adopt any children you have ASAP and wants them to call HIM daddy ASAP

33.He has tried and/or admits to trying to make you mad for no real reason.

34.He mentions how you should feel "lucky" to be one of the chosen few on his "good" list. "There's not a lot of people in this world I let into my life."

35.The only thing he EVER says when you are in need of empathy/support is, "I'm sorry you feel that way." Or, in his true narcissistic fashion, he will mention how he has felt, or feels, the EXACT same way; hence; bringing the spotlight back over to him. AGAIN.

36.He plays with himself while you are lying naked next to him. It will make you feel like you are laying next to a child that has discovered his penis for the first time.

37.He mentions how he has a high IQ, and not many people "understand him."

38.The only time he says anything remotely "sincere" is when he's drunk...which is 5 nights a week. (usually after work) He'll say things that make you believe he really DOES have that soft side you've been seeking since the day you met him. "You're so good for me" "I want to be loved and show love" "You know I love you..."

39.He is domineering and selfish in bed. Gives you orders. "Touch me" "Look at me" "Tell me how much you want me." He won't get off unless you are doing these things. Sex is NOT a sensual experience for him. He doesn't understand that you are a human, have feelings, need to be treated gently, etc. Sex is just another method of him proving his greatness. And if you don't get off, he'll be upset. Not because he genuinely cares about you; but because he didn't live up to his false sexual alter ego. King of the Satin-Sheet Throne, if you will.

40.When you ask him why he's so quiet, he says, "I only say what needs to be said." He mentions the beauty of silence, and how so many people fill up the air with unnecessary vocalizations. BARF.

41.When you ask him why he doesn't open up about his emotions, he says, "I'm a machine. I'm programmed not to feel." When you tell him that's the most absurd thing you've ever heard, he will use his job (as a general manager, or any authority position) as an excuse of WHY he can't open up.

42. He

is a film critic, a history major, and poet. You are almost intimidated by his "artsy" side. He is intelligent, well-versed, and well educated. You think to yourself, "How did I snag such a GREAT guy?" As time goes by, you notice that his film reviews (especially historical war films) and poetry are the ONLY areas he "comes alive." You wonder why he has such a strong connection to certain things, yet emotionally he's aloof.

43. When

you call him out on his shit, he playfully says, "I'm clueless!" He will say this over and over again, as if it's "cute." When you are genuinely pissed off at him, he will bat his broken puppy dog eyes, and say, "I know you love me, though..."

44.Will mention how much he hates his father; yet talks to him every other day on the phone.

45.Takes no responsibility if the relationship isn't going "swimmingly." He blames YOU. YOU'RE not working

with the situation. YOU'RE not accepting him the way he is. YOU'RE passive-aggressive, etc.

46.His life is ambiguous. You never really feel like you "know" him. You may meet his family once, and friends occasionally, but you always feel like he's hiding something. He never really explains any of his past in detail. And, if he does, it's only when he's explaining his way out of something. I.E. "I'm the victim, and here's why."

47. Makes

extremely creepy, misogynistic comments. "I think it would be really funny, when you're introducing yourself to a woman, to extend your hand out, shake her hand, and say, 'I'm gonna rape you!' “You do NOT laugh, though he gets a kick out of this. When you corner him on this, he mentions how his uncles used to make rapejokes.....towards him.

48.Is over socially opinionated. At first you think he's well educated, and become intrigued some of the odd facts he knows. Later you realize all these facts add up to the whole, "fighting the good fight" mentality. He's always trying to seek justice, prove wrong, pinpoint facts, find the irony, uncover the conspiracy, etc. His brain is infatuated with this shit. It's all part of the "holier than thou" mindset, how he has everything "figured out" and you should feel proud to be with such a brave man. GAG.

49. He

tells you he hates you with utter vehemence when he is angry.

50.If you ever once, just for one second, see a frightening, mad, staring-eyed look on his face that isn’t the result of something at least as horrifying as him having just been bitten by a venomous snake (i.e if you’ve just suggested you both visit some friends of yours) then no matter how fleeting it was or how deeply you think you care for him, either run for the hills or change the locks (depending on whose house it is). Ignore this one and it could cost you your life.

51.He demands sex on the first date, and when you repeatedly refuse it, he replies that he won't take no for an answer, and asks repeatedly what he has to do to make you change your mind.

52.He wants to have sex when you are sick, with no regard for how you feel. These are the same kinds of people who will tell you that they require sex or a sexual act daily to be fulfilled, with no regard for their partner's state of mind or arousal.

53.His favorite subject is how oppressed he is by the world, and how all these feminists and liberated women who always turn him down have damaged his self-concept and made life so hard for him.

54.He has a litany of stories regarding "ex's" that have screwed him over.

55.Facts change within stories - he tells you one thing and twenty minutes later tells you another.

56.Over 30 with no car, no phone (cell or otherwise) and/or a history of changing residences and/or jobs multiple times in the last year.

57.Tells you grandiose stories of past experiences that don't seem to fit together.

58.On the first date, he tells you he thinks he could fall in love with you, and/or wants to marry you and he'll convert to your religion because "you are the one", etc...

59.Despite his obvious mental angst [or perhaps because of it...] he completely rejects the idea of professional therapy as a sham, preferring to confide in YOU, because, well, YOU are so much better at understanding him and his troubled life than some overpaid professional "quack."

60.He/she has an elevated tension level consistently. Tries to paint the inability to relax as a positive character trait.

61.He/she always has an "agenda". Does not sincerely listen to anything that diverts attention from the agenda, and quickly shifts conversation back to his/her goal(s), without addressing the other person's concerns.

62.He says things like "I see in you the woman you can be (/become)", in combination with his love declarations. (This sounds very romantic in the beginning, as if he wants to help you grow, or develop, or god knows what you make of it, but in fact it means: I see flaws in how you are now and I am going to do something about "fixing" you)

63.He immediately starts sucking up to your friends and trying to become buddies with them. I am not saying being nice to them, I mean trying to establish his OWN close relationship with them. (In the beginning easily taken for 'nice': he wants to be a part of my life, but in fact a means to have better control -e.g. make you start doubting them later if he wants to alienate you from them, to make you more dependent on him, and to prevent you from having someone to talk to about problems with him (friends don't want to get "caught in the middle"). Manipulators try to get close to YOUR friends in order to feed misinformation behind the scenes, so that they come off looking like martyrs when they pull the rug out.

64.They have had a chemical dependency problem in the past. Addicts usually replace one addiction with another, if they ever leave on addiction behind at all. Alcohol today, porn tomorrow.

65.Men who have juvenile hobbies such as comic book or action figure collections. This is a huge sign that they're not all the way grown up.

66.Men who take a casual touch football or video game and turn it into a major competitive event complete with "psych-out" insults and verbal baiting. Later, when feelings are hurt, he will say that the object of this fierce competitiveness was "hypersensitive" or just a sore loser crybaby.

67.You assert some perfectly normal, basic right of yours, for example to not lend him your car for a week or something, and he acts very shocked and hurt, and tells you that YOU ARE VERY SELFISH. 99.9% of the time, when a person tells you YOU are selfish, it is because you are refusing to give in to some unreasonable, selfish demand of theirs. They will try this with any aspect of life where you assert yourself as a separate independent person - such things as going back to school, having your own bank account, going out with your friends without him, etc. are "selfish" since they are not about him or his "needs."

68.He/she tries to enlist your help in getting revenge on or publicly embarrassing his/her ex.

69.He/she enlists your friends and family to get you back after a fight or break up.

70.The answer to any relationship problem you have is resolved in bed.

71.He and you grew up differently- him from a traditional "old world" style family- and you a "Americanized" family- and he wants you to behave/dress/talk more conservative (like his mother- a lifelong homemaker).

72.He breaks up with you "for your own good", using excuses like "you will be miserable with me" or "you need to be free" or "you aren't ready for sex", then he begs for you to come back.

73.He does something REALLY inconsiderate and/or discourteous, and no matter how calmly you try to talk to him about it, he JUST DOESN'T SEEM TO UNDERSTAND why you are hurt or upset. You find yourself having to explain concepts of basic courtesy to him. He insists that you are overreacting, being too

sensitive, or uses some other implication that there must be something wrong with you. Even if he DOES apologize, you leave the conversation never really feeling like things were actually resolved. Never feeling like he really understood or accepted that his actions were inappropriate or hurtful.

74.He says things like "I just want to be good for someone. I just want to be good for YOU." Don't let it tug at your heart-strings. Don't think it means he's REALLY working on his stuff - it means he's so filled with self-hate that he's been an ass to everyone else in his past, and he thinks that he can feel good about himself if he finds the "right" woman. He's searching for salvation through YOU instead of working on his shit himself, and it won't work. It didn't work in the past with all the other women and you are just another kick at the can for him.

75.He says things like, "If I can't make it work with you, I don't think I can make it work with anyone...", trying to emotionally manipulate you into feeling sorry for him, so you'll stay around when he is clearly behaving like an ass.

76.He sits in the car, honking the horn, or starts to drive away, while you are still in the house/apartment, trying to get ready to go out. He knows you aren't ready yet, but he goes out to the car anyway. He gets angry and frustrated if you aren't ready the instant HE is. Your life is expected to run on HIS schedule.

77.On the subject of running your life on HIS schedule, You are expected to wake up when HE does, and go to bed when HE does. If you stay up late or sleep in, he sulks or takes off without leaving any indication of where he has gone. He may "forget" the two of you made plans for that day, or go do the activity you planned to do together, with someone else.

78.Something about him "creeps out" or unnerves other friends or family members.

79.He just *leaves* a party or function you went to with him, without telling you (or anyone else) he is leaving, or where he is going.

80.He drops subtle or not-so-subtle hints about how "perfect" he thinks he is, or what a great catch others have said he is, and how "lucky" you are to have him. Unfortunately, with this guy, you will never be able to live up to his impossible standards.

81.He tells you how his previous girlfriend (the one he dumped for you) says the two of you won't last (attempting to hook you into trying to prove her wrong).

82.He sulks or acts like a sullen jerk if you ask him to attend function with you that he doesn't want to attend, or if you don't want to leave early, when HE does. He is incapable of being mature about it and just figuring out how to have fun.

83.He goes to a movie or play or concert that YOU expressed an interest in seeing, with someone else - deliberately timing it so that you were unavailable to attend.

84.He makes joking insults about you in front of others and/or in front of you.

85.He blames all his previous relationship failures on the women he was with. He complains how they were unstable, insensitive or just didn't understand him. If he DOES admit that he fucked things up, he is quick to point out that if SHE had been the *right* person for him, she wouldn't have allowed him to fuck it up.

86.Even though he will denigrate them on the one hand, on the other hand, he holds his previous girlfriend(s) up as impossible standards for you to live up to.

87.He seems like "a challenge", or a "diamond in the rough".

88.He/she talks about looking for a "soul mate" or "someone to complete me".

89.He warns you about his previous bad behavior, and indicates that he is "working" on it, but is not "healed" yet. He implies that maybe only YOU can really understand and help him overcome his past, but he's not sure. This leaves him an "out" (an "I WARNED you" option) when he DOES act out again.

90.He never apologizes, or he apologizes, but in an oily way that implies that he won't make a commitment to not do it again, or in some way implies that YOU were the cause of the bad behavior - that you "triggered" him or "pushed his dysfunctional buttons".

91.He has no friends of the opposite sex.

92.He has no friends period.

93.He has people he calls "friends" but he very rarely, (or *never* calls) them, goes out with them or does anything with them.

94.His "friends" are total flakes, crackpots and emotionally disturbed people. (Healthy people attract Healthy friends. Unhealthy people attract Unhealthy friends.)

95.He/She abandons his/her current "friends" at the start of your relationship, and practically never sees them, never does anything with them anymore - he/she is completely focused on YOU.

96.He has no spine- lets you do whatever you want, never says NO. Says things like, "Whatever you do." or "It's up to you."

97.He/She doesn't take responsibility for his/her behavioreverything is someone else's fault. Or blames all adult mistakes on parents.

98.He thinks WWF wrestling is culture.

99.He/She gets annoyed if you want to spend time with anyone else but him/her. Won't let you have your own friends and starts gradually cutting you off from them. Or insists she/he doesn't need any friends except for you.

100.He does something REALLY hurtful or inconsiderate and when you get upset, makes a comment like, "I'm not

responsible for your feelings". He refuses to do anything in the way of reparation, and invalidates your feelings. He acts cold and callous, or condescending implying that you are overreacting or being irrational by being upset.

101.He apologizes, but keeps repeating the same hurtful "mistakes". When you question him on this he accuses you of "laying blame".

102.He remembers EVERY mistake you ever made, and brings them up long after you apologized (and made reparation), in order to justify HIS bad behavior ("Well YOU did X... and I'm still hurting from it..."). OR he uses those old hurts as excuses for his "depression".

103.He has a completely different recollection of "events" than you have, and insists that YOU are the one that has the faulty memory. Especially events where HE acted inappropriately.

104.He is a pig in his own place, but expects that the "right woman" will help him fix it up and keep it clean.

105.(if you are living together). He complains about the mess in the house, and criticizes the lack of kitchen cleanliness as if it is YOUR fault, but his own room or office is a STY.

(Remember, it's easier to criticize the way a woman keeps a kitchen than it is to admit you are a misogynist.)

106.(for guys in their 30's and 40's) He has NO relationship with his ex-partners, in fact, they want NOTHING to do with him. If he isn't friends with at least a couple of his ex-partners (especially the long-term significant ones), and talks with them socially periodically (over more than issues with their kids), then watch out.

107.He is uncomfortable with you talking to his former girlfriends/partners/spouses.

108.(According to him) all or many of his former girlfriends are "nuts" or emotionally unbalanced. Watch out for the "I did this bad thing, BUT... SHE brought it out in me.... and I won't be that way with you..." or worse... the "I'm not sure if I won't do this again, but with the RIGHT woman to BELIEVE in me..."

109.He seems like a "lost puppy" in need of care. (Get help for yourself for even being attracted.)

110.He has ANY history of childhood abuse (abusive parents or siblings), ESPECIALLY (but not limited to) sexual abuse, and he hasn't been in YEARS of therapy (and I mean YEARS - like a decade or more, depending on his

age), working through his issues. Men who were abused have a very strong tendency to become abusers. It takes many many years of therapy to overcome this, if they can at all. And when they start therapy, they often get worse before they get better. Manipulative men who have been in therapy for only a year or so or are probably at the WORST stage to get involved with.

111.He/She is on the rebound - i.e. less than 1.5 years after a major breakup from a long-term relationship.

112. 113.He's seeing someone else (and he is intimate with them) and he falls for you. It may seem very flattering, but he'll only do the same thing to you later. It's a sick pattern and it ISN'T going to stop with YOU. 114. 115.He tells you all the ways you are alike and seems to find more similarities with each passing day - he's setting you up. He's "mirroring" you to be more attractive. It's another abuser/controller pattern. 116. 117.He/She wants to get married before you have known each other for more than 1-2 years and haven't even lived together yet. It takes at least 1.5yrs for the "hormone rush" of infatuation to wear off, and the true colours to start to emerge, depending on how quickly you individuate away from the "joined at the hip" phase. 118. 119.He starts doing things incongruent with the person you THOUGHT you first got to know. People are always on their best behavior during the "courtship" phase. If that

behavior starts to degrade and change into little nasty digs, or lies, or other forms of abuse, DITCH him before it gets worse. Don't wait around hoping the the guy you first fell in love with is going to resurface - that was obviously a False Image designed to hook you. 120. 121.He/She takes pride in how he/she "screwed over" the ex financially in the divorce. 122. 123.He renegs on or "forgets" any financial agreement the two of you had - such as to share the rent on a basement apartment you both worked on to fix up. 124. 125.He insists that you remain financially independent and then complains when you can't afford the same level of entertainment and travel that HE can. 126. 127.He seems "too good to be true" - he probably IS (not TRUE, that is). 128. 129.He is constantly "down" and has a variety of excuses his back hurts, he doesn't get enough light, you are keeping him awake at night so he doesn't get enough sleep, he hasn't had enough to eat that day, etc. 130. 131.He suffers from some kind of chronic pain, such as back pain, but refuses to get any treatment for it, and then uses it as an excuse for why he is irritable, inconsiderate and even nasty. 132. 133.He continually rejects your ideas for things to do, (dates) places to go, etc. 134.

135.He "forgets" critical things that he has KNOWN for years, like the fact that you are allergic to feathers (and buys a feather comforter for the bed, or a feather pillow). 136. 137.You *clearly* and openly state your expectations and needs, in a calm and caring fashion, you are told that you are being "controlling" or "manipulative" or "too sensitive". 138. 139.He tells snide joking insults about you in front of others. If you complain, he says it was all in fun and you are just being too sensitive. 140. 141.You are moving out of the infatuation phase and find yourself having to constantly reassure him that you love him and will be there, simply because you are no longer spending every waking minute (outside of work) with him. He continually complains about the lack of "intensity" in your relationship and implies that YOU are the one responsible for not keeping it up. 142. 143.He used to be completely interested in anything you had to say, and now starts showing disinterest in topics that interest you, to the point of rudeness. He won't even listen out of politeness or courtesy. Complains that you don't talk about HIM enough, or listen to HIM enough, and that what you are interested in, isn't interesting to HIM. Expects YOU, however to be interested in ANYTHING *he* is interested in. 144. 145.You have to keep proving yourself worthy of his attention or love. You get attention withdrawn if you ask for responsible behavior or in any way indicate that you were not happy with something he did. 146.

147.He tells you many or all of his deep dark secrets, early on. It seems like he is really sensitive and opening up to you. This is often a tactic that manipulators use to get you to think that YOU are so special that they can only open up like that to YOU. It's just a technique. They do it with EVERYONE. They also do it to "cover" for their previous bad behavior, - if they TELL you about it, it MUST mean they are working on it and won't do it again... (though they NEVER ACTUALLY SAY THAT... they imply it heavily). The goal is to cover their tracks in case you happen to hear something from anyone else - this ensures that they have good cover story well in hand, as well as giving them the advantage of already convincing you of THEIR version before anyone else can get you. And the act of telling you about their bad behavior in the past will become a great caveat/excuse in future if they enact it on you - "well I TOLD you I was a manipulator, and that I was TRYING to change..." the implication being that you just weren't SPECIAL enough, after all... or that you aren't trying hard enough... Watch what they DO, not what they say. 148. 149.He/she continually wants to discuss "the relationship", and is always finding problems or faults with it, and/or starts insisting/implying that all the relationship problems are YOUR fault. 150. 151.He/She puts on a *very* different demeanor, a different personna, when at work or with another group of people. He/she seems to be a chameleon depending on who they are with - instead of being one *real* person. If questioned, gets defensive and insists that they just have many "facets" to their personality, implying that you just don't fully "accept" them as they are.

152.He uses money to win influence and/or get attention, not because he is genuinely altruistic or generous in nature for example, he drops hundreds or thousands of dollars on "donations" to charitable organizations (so he can get VIP status at their functions), but won't loan you his $5 beat-up old backpack.

153.She doesn't eat.

154.He's in a real hurry to get married, right now, right away!

155.He's an ex-con. For some women, this still isn't enough, for some reason.

156.Over 30 and still living at home.

157.His/her whole social life revolves around his/her parents.

158.On the first date, already talks about marriage or kids. (This is even out on the 2nd or 3rd date)

159.After only one or two dates, gets overly possessive. Calls constantly, sends gifts, shows up at work.

160.His entire wardrobe consists of clothes from trade shows like Comdex, bearing the logos of software and gaming companies.

161.He stockpiles weapons.

162.He has kids with various women and never sees them.

163.He/She has long history of getting involved with losers, deadbeats, drug addicts.

164.She still calls her mother every time she has to make a major life decision.

165.He/she says things like "you're everything to me. I can't live without you."

166.Everyone hates him- your friends, your parents, even your dog.

167.He/she is under 23 and has already been married and divorced and has kids.

168.He/she can't hold a job for more than three months.

169.He shows signs of pennypinching. For example, a guy who only goes to the rep theatre because he has a special card, and then won't even buy a popcorn but eats out of your container all night and shares your soda. Then won't even go out for a beer after, even if it's a weekend. His clothes are ten years old or more.

170.He uses "bitch" as a term of endearment.

171.He supports his driving under the influence of drugs and alcohol with the phrase, "I'm a professional!" (The fact that drugs are present should be red flag anyway, but not everyone feels that way.)

172.He goes out of his way to be rude and condescending to waitstaff and gets a kick out of their discomfort.

173.He refuses to wear a condom and supports his argument against condoms by saying, "I never wear them."

174.He tells you not to get "illusions of grandeur" in regard to marrying him.

175.Sports programs preempt visits with his children on a regular basis.

176.This is a big one: HE DOWNPLAYS AND DEGRADES ALL OF THE "RULES" PEOPLE FOLLOW WHEN DATING. HE COMPLAINS THAT WOMEN ALWAYS MAKE MEN JUMP THROUGH HOOPS. HE FOCUSES ON THESE TWO IN MOST CONVERSATIONS FROM THE FIRST DATE ON. His way of getting around the rules is to repeat, "Ours isn't a conventional relationship. We're not like all of those other people out there who have to have boundaries."