Ghosting, cushioning, friend-zoning – just when you think you heard about every cowardly and ridiculous non-dating trend, along comes another one to remind you that it's not safe out there... This time around it's "Breadcrumbing" that even got a special definition in the urban dictionary as “the act of sending out flirtatious, but non-committal text messages (ie "breadcrumbs") in order to lure a sexual partner without expending much effort".

As if the definition of breadcrumbing isn't bad enough, it can happen to you without you even realizing it! So, if you want to avoid getting breadcrumbed (and we assume you do), here's how to tell if someone is trying to get you to follow their breadcrumbs:

  • They send you messages out of the blue – it's evening time and you get a surprising message from the guy or girl you are into. The mere excitement of hearing from them clouds the fact that they haven't been texting you on regular or even semi-regular basis. If you get such sporadic messages, it's likely that someone is breadcrumbing you and keeping you on the back burner, just in case they need some casual bed partner.
  • They seem interested. On social media – breadcrumbers are notorious for making you think that they are interested in you but in a sneaky way. They like your photos on Instagram and Facebook and may even write a comment or throw an emoji your way from time to time. They do the just enough to make you remember they're around so you don't lose interest, so be careful with online flattery, it could just be a breadcrumb.
  • Their texts lack substance – most of us want to meet someone who wants to get to know us, which breadcrumbers don't really want to do. You can see it with the texts your love interest sends you. If they are one liners, like "how are you?" that don't really dig deep to see what is happening in your life and what kind of person you are, it's breadcrumbs.
  • They make you feel like you did something wrong – if you keep feeling like you're constantly doing something wrong because someone you are supposedly going out with isn't responsive, it's a definite warning sign. Feeling like you can't be yourself and that you keep doing something wrong that made the other person disappear show that you are probably and sadly getting breadcrumbed.

Being mistreated in any way at the beginning of a relationship or even when dating someone is never pleasant, and unfortunately, there are always new non-dating trends that pop up and make people feel bad. If you don't want to get sucked in to an emotional turmoil, note the warning signs of breadcrumbing and avoid the person who is only willing to give you little bits of themselves.