Reflection Cube

Three-dimensional thoughts

Tag: attraction

Cloudy pink and white heart #Valentine's Day #love #romance #affection #attraction #relationships #loneliness #singleness #holidays #marriage #dating #life #depression #sadness #hope #joy #mentalhealth #healthyrelationships #strength #insight #standards #selfcare #patience #waiting #lifestyle #choices #decisions #heart #heartache #heartbreak

Single on Valentine’s Day?

You’re not alone in that. <3 😉

Me too.

I happen to not be a huge fan of Valentine’s Day. Not really because it reminds me I’m not in a relationship, so much as the fact that I quickly tire of seeing that much of that shade of red (you know, the typical bright Valentine’s Day red) everywhere, and if I were to celebrate, I can’t eat chocolate anyway, can’t drink wine, can’t tolerate synthetic fragrances, and cards collect dust (I mean, I appreciate them, but I wouldn’t feel hurt or upset if someone didn’t want to bother to get me one. Because then I’d either have to throw it away after reading it (which feels a bit heartless), or I’d have to find a place to put it. Cards are most meaningful when random, unexpected, or given during a rough patch in life.)

Plus, it saddens me to see Valentine’s Day transform into an opportunity for people to get upset or hurt if their loved one forgot the “special day”, and consequently neglected to give/do anything in recognition of the holiday and the relationship. Like, don’t you do and give something to recognize the relationship every day? Maybe things that go unnoticed or are taken for granted, but don’t you cook for each other or do the dishes or keep the books or talk or embrace often?

Perpetually single girl speaking here. I’m just observing relationships and married life in confusion, awe, and perplexion, imagining how I’d operate and function in such a world, and wondering at the seemingly nitpicky complaints and troubles that so easily mushroom into major ones in that environment.

But truly, I hope that if and when I’m in a relationship someday, our love would be deep-rooted and solid enough that I wouldn’t need mini trinkets to bolster my sense of security or convince me that we’re still “in love”. Indeed, even in a “shaky” or “poor” relationship, such tokens would offer little to reassure me.

I would hope that our love would be marked by give-and-take every day. Not of things or stuff or cards. But of service, sacrifice, mutual learning, counsel, trust, and sharing of information, quality time where possible, and lots of hugs and touch. 🙂 And when one of us couldn’t meet expectations or had to rely more on the other to “carry the load”, we would still stick together. We wouldn’t say “Hey! You didn’t meet your work or love quota for the day!” We would extend grace.

I may be an idealist who’s never been in a relationship, but having been fortunate to have had the opportunity to witness lasting love between my parents and many other couples, I know that this kind of love is possible. The problem is, it takes work, persistence, and a lot of pain along the way. And most of us are terrified to run that gauntlet.

And I also realize – from witnessing other couples’ relationships (including some really unstable marriages) – that there are some incredibly toxic people out there who truly seem to be incapable of give-and-take, negotiation, other-mindedness, learning, or reasoning. Hopefully, we are able to recognize warning signs and red flags early on, before we ever commit.

Seriously though, if it’s a solid relationship, a holiday isn’t necessary to know that. If your love is strong, you don’t need presents or tokens other than fellowship and hugs (if physically possible – I know this is something military spouses often sacrifice) and steadfastness to know that you’re secure and loved.

And to love someone in the first place, you actually don’t need any of those things at all. Love is something you give without expecting anything back. If you expect something back, I’m not sure it can really be called love. Once reciprocation or ROI is expected, it becomes a transaction. Business.

business-marriage-handshake awkwardness

All of that said, I get it. February can already be challenging enough, without the added pain of a holiday that reminds many of us of what we don’t have. Of things that aren’t (whether the thing that isn’t is being in a relationship or being “remembered” on Valentine’s Day).

In response to this painful reminder, some of us even go so far as to mourn our singleness on Valentine’s Day with black flowers and ice cream “binge eating” sessions.

Valentine's Day black flower #black #rose #flower #blackrose #singleness #depression

Pixabay photo (CC0 License)

Valentine's Day girl eating ice cream gif #depression #loneliness

That be you? Hope this “infographic” can offer some encouragement. <3

Valentine's day #singleness #loneliness #love #romance #attraction #relationships #patience #growth #time #freedom #blogging #writing #katerichardson #reflectioncube #life #joy #peace #waiting #lifestyle #decisions #choices #February #holidays #heart #sadness #depression #longing #desire #improvement #maturity #identity

Photo by Kate Richardson / Reflection Cube 2018

With that, my lovelies, I send you mega cyber hugs, and wish you a Happy Valentine’s Day. <3

© 2018 Kate Richardson All Rights Reserved

signs an INTP likes you and might be interested in you - bear holding heart

Signs an INTP Might Like, Like You

Is your crush an INTP? Wondering if the interest might be mutual?

None of the following clues can be considered absolutely indicative of an INTP’s interest. However, if you see many of these signs in conjunction, there’s a good chance that they may like, like you (or “at least” consider you an inspiring friend or acquaintance).

They study and strive to become proficient/knowledgeable in your field of expertise.

If an INTP likes you, they often want to understand the depths not only of who you are, but what you know and the areas in which you shine. They’re attracted to your mind and the prowess you display in your element, and they want to be a part of it. Because to be a part of it is to be a part of you.

Be it chemistry, cooking, business, or massage, an INTP may very well apply themselves to master – or at least decently understand – the things of interest to you.

Actually, this is how I learned the violin. I once had a crush on a dude who played tons of instruments, and I wanted to be like him, so I bought a cheap violin and some educational materials and started learning. Who would’ve known that such a pursuit would actually lead to a passionate love of the violin, and further down the road, the opportunity to participate in an orchestra? 😮 My crush on that guy transformed into a crush on the violin, which lasted even after this fellow moved away and (I think) almost relinquished his dedication to playing or mastering musical instruments, and after I gradually moved on.

They talk to everyone but you at a social gathering.

Generally, the guy I like will be the one in the room I struggle the most to talk to (especially initially). If I like you, it’s pretty much a given that I already respect you. And if I respect you, then I don’t want to mess anything up in your presence. Goofy, I know. It’s not like you or I are perfect, so why should we hope to appear perfect, or put the other on a pedestal? When I think about it that way, it helps me to remember that you’re human. And then sometimes I can talk more, but it still sounds awkward and stilted.


They stalk you online to discover anything they can about your work,  passions, and philosophies.

Definitely done this! 😳

Unfortunately, this clue may not always be so accessible to the stalkee. How would you know if someone is shadowing you online unless they tell you they are, or frequently engage with your statuses/posts/profiles?

They start hanging out in social settings where you are more than they used to or than seems typical/comfortable for them.

Spending extra time in public can be draining for the INTP, especially because of their function stack. Some INTPs struggle to use their dominant function (introverted thinking) very well when in social settings, so if they’re making more time to participate in social gatherings where you are, there’s at least something or someone keeping them there. Either they find the company of your group to be particularly intellectually stimulating, or there’s another interest – possibly a person in that group – that’s capturing their attention and undivided focus. (Or both could be true.)


They start wearing the same piece of clothing all the time after having an extra positive experience with you when wearing that article.

Okay, maybe this is just me. 🙂 But I am an INTP, so…this is true of at least one INTP. 😀

And it could be a totally quirky, stupid, or practically ugly piece of clothing. But if the INTP has reason to believe that you prefer seeing a given shirt or jacket on them, the concern of quirkiness or frumpiness will go out the window, and they’ll wear it to death in the hopes of a continuation of positive connections with you.

I observe the tone and hue of my interactions with people and, rightly or wrongly, sometimes connect the nature of those interactions (at least in part) with what I was wearing. I learn through observation what colors or styles on me tend to (possibly) irritate others, and which ones tend to make me appear more approachable or competent (or whatever message I’m trying to send). If I like you, and we have an especially warm or memorable interaction when I’m wearing a particular clothing article, then chances are I’ll keep wearing it every or nearly every time we see each other. 😀

Stuffed bear holding heart

Pixabay photo (CC License)

What’s your personality type, and what are some ways you slip someone a hint that you’re interested – intentionally or not (besides actually telling them or asking them out)?

Please see disclaimer.

© 2018 Kate Richardson All Rights Reserved

slithery green python snake

Toxic People

Let me preface by saying that you can’t possibly avoid – 24/7 – everyone who makes you uncomfortable. But you can limit contact with some of them, and you definitely should, if at all possible, limit contact with the toxic (rather than simply annoying) people in your life.

While some might argue that it is a character-strengthening practice to “deal” with these people, the truth is, toxic people can only be “dealt” with when YOU maximize your distance from them. Toxic people – and their toxic behavior – can rarely be reasoned with or reasoned through. You will reach a breaking point, if you try to “tough it out” and make lucidity out of lunacy. You’ll be trying and trying to wrap your brain around an iron post. The post will remain intact and unchanged, but your brain will end up mutilated and mangled.

Toxic people are often skilled (wittingly or unwittingly) at twisting your mind and bringing you closer to the threshold of insanity.

For your benefit and theirs, you need to establish boundaries in your life to keep these people from getting too close to you – to the point that they can compromise your ability to think clearly or function in life.

Remember, to love someone is not necessarily to be close to them or to maintain contact. Sometimes, the best way to love someone is to cut off the emotionally-enabling supply that you’ve been feeding them. (Note, this is different from providing emotional support for someone within a healthy relationship/context.)

I am going to mention some character behaviors that may indicate a person is toxic for you.

Toxic people defy logic. Some are blissfully unaware of the negative impact that they have on those around them, and others seem to derive satisfaction from creating chaos and pushing other people’s buttons. – Travis Bradberry

Signs to Watch Out For

Keep your eyes open if your loved one (girl/boyfriend, friend, family member) shows any of these signs.

Needs to put you down to feel validated.

This person has a hungry ego, and must drink someone else’s blood to keep that ego alive. Like vampires, or Ravenna (in Snow White and the Huntsman) – who absorbed the youth and life-force of other beautiful, young people, causing them to shrivel up and age before their time.

This person cannot live apart from crushing your soul – the beauty and youth of your spirit. In order to thrive, they must cause you to wither.

Makes you feel undeserving of anyone or anything better.

In other words, they have to constantly berate you or physically hurt you to keep you. After enough of this treatment, their hope is that you’ll begin to think you really deserve this treatment and nothing better. It’s a tactic that shouldn’t work, but is often effective nevertheless.

If you are suffering from emotional or physical/sexual abuse, find a friend’s place or shelter where you can be safe until you can work out something else.

If you are suffering from abuse, stop reading NOW and call the National Violence Domestic Hotline: 1−800−799−7233 

Exaggerates when recounting stories of accomplishments or experiences.

  1. If they’re always embellishing and modifying the details, how are you going to know when you can trust them?
  2. If they’re insecure to the point that they need to alter the particulars about themselves, then that insecurity could start playing out in other ways that harm you down the road. Who knows how far they’ll go to maintain their prized and protected image?

Needs to prove EVERYTHING to you or constantly remind you of their personal character “qualities” (e.g. trustworthiness, likability).

They shouldn’t have to prove these things. If a person really is trustworthy, that should become apparent over time, without the help of any verbal affirmation.

Refuses to take responsibility for anything or ever accept blame or admit fault.

If they can’t be wrong, then you can be sure the blame’s going to fall on you or someone else. This is not healthy for your mind. If you’re fed a steady diet of the message “It’s your fault” or “You’re a piece of s**t” or “You’re going crazy”, you’re eventually going to begin to believe it.

Constantly flatters you.

One difference I’ve noticed between flattery and compliments is that flattery usually has no actions to back it up (except, perhaps, infatuation, sexual desire, or greed), while a genuine compliment is often supported by other actions and gestures from a person that signify care/concern/love, like talking with you about the good/bad parts of your life, wanting to spend quality time with you, being concerned when you’re hurt, or remembering a detail about you.

Flattery is often exaggerated, over-the-top, or just a little too addictive and ego-boosting to be true. If someone tells me I’m the best vocalist they’ve ever heard, I’m going to wonder a) if they get out much, and b) what else they’ve lied to me about.

Is insecure or jealous, to the point of becoming hyper-controlling.

If they feel threatened whenever you smile innocently at someone else, there’s a problem.

If they become angry when it takes you a while to respond to a text about your whereabouts (not like an “are you safe?” text of genuine concern, but a “tell me where you are and what you’re doing every hour” kind of text), there’s a problem.

If they’re following your every activity with little cameras or want passwords to all your social media accounts, WHY the f’ are you still there? The NSA (or ASIO, CSIS, BND, CBI) already spies on you enough. You don’t need any more of that.

Uses religion or “faith” to prove their point or make you feel immature or un-spiritual if you disagree (a spiritual narcissist or spiritual “tyrant”).

I’ve had some personal experience with the spiritual narcissist, and I hope to write about this subject in more detail in the future.

For now, suffice it to say that the spiritual narcissist is doubly dangerous for a person who aspires to adhere to or live out a certain faith.

Are they twisting text to prove a point or support their own personal arguments and interests?

Are they making up the rules as they go, and slapping a verse on everything?

Can you never “win” an argument with them?

Are you labeled “unforgiving” or against “reconciliation between brothers” when you tell them you need space or time away, especially after they’ve done something that really hurt you?

Are you called “unsubmissive” when they’ve asked you to do something that would be self-serving for them, greedy, dishonest, or otherwise dishonorable, and you’ve refused?

Are you accused of being “unfaithful” when you smile innocently at someone else?

Are you labeled “heretic” or “blind” or “unbelieving” when you interpret a piece of the Bible (or other text) differently than they do?

A tyrant must put on the appearance of uncommon devotion to religion. Subjects are less apprehensive of illegal treatment from a ruler whom they consider god-fearing and pious. On the other hand, they do less easily move against him, believing that he has the gods on his side. – Aristotle

Is obsessed with their and/or your outward appearance (physical and/or social).

If they always expect you to attend social events with them and can’t respect your need for alone time, or they sign you up to go out and “do” lots of stuff so you can both brag about how busy you are, if they expect you to dress a certain way so they can show off their “trophy” girlfriend/boyfriend/spouse, then you’ve got issues.

If they cannot respect your emotional needs for space and your personal definition of modesty or your preference for comfortable clothing, you’re in an unhealthy relationship. I’d encourage you to share your concerns with a therapist.

Has to always maintain a superficial facade.

Can never talk about deep, hard, or sad things. Can never hear you share about your struggle with depression, at least without slapping platitudes in your face and telling you to “snap out of it” or bragging that they’ve never been depressed. Can never share about any of their own struggles or issues or insecurities or flaws. In essence, a person who can never be real or authentic.

And I realize we all have those parts of our lives and ourselves which are tough to share.

There are many aspects of ourselves which we don’t share for fear of judgment or because we haven’t found the “one” with whom we feel safe sharing. But if someone is unable to let you see the human side of themselves at all, then that is cause for concern.

Doesn’t respect your boundaries or standards.

Are they pushing you to kiss, have sex, or for you to let them hold or touch you in a certain way? Are they saying things that they know hurt you? Are they unable to ever give you personal, private space to be alone and think and have some down time? Do they expect you to completely tailor your schedule to theirs, and always put them first?

Do they expect a daily report (vs. desiring a casual, caring conversation) about all your activities?

Do they follow you with cameras (hidden on their person or in your apartment/house)? Do they monitor your email, or otherwise censor your actions? Do their actions suggest they don’t fully trust you?

Do they view you as an extension of themselves rather than an individual and independent human being? Even if you are financially dependent on them, this is no excuse for them to attempt to govern your daily and personal affairs. You are an adult, after all, and you are CHOOSING to occupy the same place (even if you’re broke, there are places you can go if you need to be safe).

Doesn’t listen to you at all or take much interest in you.

Are they never asking you questions? Do they seem totally uninterested/uncaring about your hamster’s death, the charities you’re passionate about, or your entrepreneurial aspirations?

A healthy relationship is marked by give-and-take. This doesn’t necessarily mean that you both talk an equal amount. But if they’re never asking you anything about your life (unless it pertains to them or their need to know all your whereabouts) then you should ask yourself what you really are to them. A sounding board?

Are you just there for them to talk and feel good about themselves, as you tirelessly nod, smile, and say “mmhmm”?

Tries to control your activities, ambitions, or life (different from providing solicited advice or gentle nudging and loving words of counsel).

If you are really skilled at something – or want to become skilled – and your friend/family member/SO is not supporting you in this, or even seems a bit envious, ask them about it. Ask why it is such a problem that you invest time and energy in becoming better at something for which you have the potential or interest or talent?

Granted, there are different seasons of life for everything, and if you’re trying to bite off more than you can chew, then please listen to the counsel of your loved one. If you have responsibilities that cannot be annulled, redistributed, or reasonably delegated (with kind consideration for the workloads of others), then yeah, maybe it’s just not the season to build that cat shelter, launch your baked goods business, or trot the country as a professional speaker. Yet.

Ascertain, as you speak with your loved one, whether they are against you ever doing this thing, or just doing this thing right now. And even if you decide to put your dream to sleep for now, watch over time, to see if it’s really a matter of “now” or “ever” to your loved one.

If they never want you to pursue your passions and hone your skills, then maybe they feel insecure, and all they know to do, in their immaturity, is hold you back.

If the answer is always “no” to practically anything that you want to do (anything that’s safe 🙂 ), there’s a problem in the relationship.

The problem may be that your loved one is overprotective or feels possessive of you. Or it may be that they just tend to see the flaws in every path or course of action you could take. While such a cognitive approach is imperative in fields like engineering, it is impossible to apply this mentality seamlessly to the rest of life, as life is too full of permutations and possibilities for us to account for every potential setback, glitch, obstacle, failure, or error. In the end, you have to acknowledge that the risk of pain, harm, and failure is everywhere, and therefore, that pain, harm, and failure are inevitable. Eventually, you must say “yes” to something.

If you have a GF/BF, friend, or parent who just believes that you’ll suck at anything you try, and it’s never worth giving anything a shot, then work to create distance between you and them (even if you have to do this gradually and subtly). They may be trying to keep you close, available, and dependent on them so they’ll have a steady diet of narcissistic supply. You don’t need that negativity and neediness dragging you down.

Love them from a distance.

Isn’t willing to take their health or your health seriously, or invest in health preemptively, proactively, and protectively.

If your loved one doesn’t give a s**t what happens with your health, or blindly believes that you’re going to be feeling just fine 10, 20 years from now on a “cheap” diet of fast food, potato chips, frozen dinners, and burgers, you need to put your foot down and take responsibility for your own health, whatever that takes. If they’re more willing to spend money on frivolous crap than on your wellbeing, that isn’t love.

If money’s tight, and taking care of your health (and their health) means cutting out cable TV or spending dessert money on some extra fruits/veggies/oils/meat instead, I believe someone who truly loves you will be willing to do that.

Plus, if they’re not taking care of themselves, how long are they going to be around to share life with you?

Cannot save money, AND expects financial support from you.

If only one of these cases is present, things might work out. In other words, someone who struggles to save money but makes their own money, OR someone who is capable of saving at least some money but relies or is going to rely on you for financial support.

But if they are going to be depending on you financially AND they always have eyes bigger than your shared pocketbook, keep your eyes open. There could very well be issues down the road.

What To Do

If you’re seeing any of these signs in your relationship, ask other people you trust for their perspective on the situation. Narcissists often have a way of disguising themselves to their victims.

The truth is, everyone is going to hurt you. You just got to find the ones worth suffering for. ―Bob Marley

You can love a narcissist, but you should keep your distance. Love does not, by default, equal proximity or trust.

If you are receiving such treatment, I’m here to tell you that you do not deserve that. Do what’s necessary to protect yourself so you can be free to thrive.


National Violence Domestic Hotline: 1−800−799−7233 

Find a safe place


Thanks for reading! 🙂




© Kate Richardson All Rights Reserved




Some of My Quirks

I’ve been writing about heavier stuff lately, like food reactions and genetic mutations and poisons. Gonna break up that streak today for some Friday FUN!!!

So this is a follow-up to my post, The Beauty of “Weird.

Here are some weird and/or random facts about me.

  1. I don’t like hair…when it’s not attached to peoplegiphy-downsized (1).gif
  2. When I think of or hear someone talk about sour cream, my teeth get the feeling that you get when someone scrapes their fingernails on a chalkboard. You know that sound when the last of the sour cream is scraped out of the plastic container with a spoon? (Agh, just watching this GIF is incredibly painful! MY TEETH HURT!) giphy-downsized (2).gif
  3. For the life of me, I still can’t figure out what color my eyes are. They seem to be a mix of blue, green, gray, and caramel brown? Like blue-gray-hazel? They also change color, but I haven’t discovered a pattern for the color changes yet (except that they turn a light blue/green when I’m crying).                                                                2017-09-17-15-38-19-084                2017-09-17-23-22-10-e1507946391859.jpg    2017-09-17-14-53-41-717  2017-09-18 06.39.14  2017-09-17-23-29-14-e1507946297613.jpg  2017-09-18-06-55-52.jpg  2017-09-17 23.29.27  (Granted, these were probably taken or modified with various lighting and shading.) (Are you getting freaked out by all the eyes??? 😜)
  4. I communicate best in writing. 

    person writing

    Photo by Green Chameleon on Unsplash

  5. I hate labels. But that doesn’t stop me from obsessing over them and learning everything I can about them (and…catching myself applying them…😔).
  6. My perspective on attractiveness (well, maybe 50-55% of my perspective): Knowledge is sexy. Intelligence is sexier. Wisdom is sexiest.


    Photo by Kyle Glenn on Unsplash

  7. The first thing I typically notice about you is your personality.
  8. When I scrape the wax out of my ears, I bring my fingers to my nose and smell it. (I avoid exhibiting this “entertainment” in public, though.)                                                  
  9. I have never been fashion-forward. In fact, I’ve been fashion-awkward much of my life. At best, I’ve managed to put together a few “classic” or color-coordinated outfits. But I can appreciate fashion in others.

    Person wearing fashionable outfit

    Photo by Zeny Rosalina on Unsplash

  10. When I bake, I frequently don’t measure anything. And I throw random ingredients together. (Okay, there is a method to my madness…usually.)
  11. I at least twice contemplated enlisting in various branches of the military, but do not regret opting against that. (I’m grateful to all who have chosen to serve, though.)


    Photo by Stijn Swinnen on Unsplash

  12. I LOVE bunny rabbits. My family likes to shoot them when they’re present “in excess” on the property, and that just crushes my soul.😢

    Cute bunny rabbit with flower in mouth

    Photo by Gary Bendig on Unsplash

  13. I am a germophobe. I see and feel germs.

    microscopic image of microbial organism

    Photo by Joel Filipe on Unsplash

  14. I talk to my smartphone. (You know, to tell the NSA “Hello there! I KNOW YOU’RE WATCHING ME!!”)

    spy peering through a hole in the wall

    Photo by Dmitry Ratushny on Unsplash

  15. I don’t really know what my own face looks like, unless I’m facing the mirror or viewing a picture of myself. Otherwise, I find my image difficult to recall. I can often visualize the details of others’ faces though. giphy-downsized (3).gif
  16. I’m a Twenty One Pilots fan. (Because, who isn’t?) If you’re not, I shall consider granting you forgiveness. 😜
  17. I notice mispeled words poor punctuation, bad grammar.
  18. When I hug or massage you, I feel like a USB drive that’s downloading all your information. I can feel your mood, your personality, and sometimes where your body is hurting. It’s overwhelming. (I still generally love hugs and enjoy giving massages though.)                                                             giphy-downsized (4).gif
  19. When I ask, “How are you?”, I am genuinely, curiously asking a question. I’m prepared to hear the good, the bad, and the ugly, if you need to share it.             giphy-downsized (6).gif


So…yeah. That’s a small glimpse into my freakarious mind.



Thanks for reading about my quirks ‘n’ other crap! 🙂

Till next time, my lovelies. <3


© 2017 Kate Richardson All Rights Reserved.







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