13 people who will *always* be off-limits, no matter how much you want to date them

Meeting someone you want to date is hard enough, which is precisely why it’s totally unfair that some people will always be off-limits to date. There are a lot of factors that can contribute to a person being “off-limits.” It really does vary depending on the situation. But usually, it will end in one big ol’ burning pile of you-know-what.

So before you run off to throw caution to the wind and live your best life, haters be damned, make sure the person you’re falling for isn’t on this list. We’re not trying to tell you how to live your life, but we graciously offer this list and implore you to seriously consider your options. After all, just because you shouldn’t date this person doesn’t mean you won’t. You just have to be prepared for the consequences. And come on, there are always consequences when it comes to dating.

These people just have automatic baggage built in before you even get to the fun part. Is it worth it?

1Your sibling’s ex.

This scenario makes for a great rom-com, but in real life, it’s not an easy situation at all. Navigating relationships with family members is already rough for a lot of people. Why would you want to make Turkey Day even more awkward by hooking up with your brother’s ex? Yikes.

2Your best friend’s ex.

Sometimes going for it with your best friend’s ex is all about timing. Like, you should never bone your BFF’s ex if the screenshots of their text fights are still in your message history. That’s just harsh. Make sure you’re very aware of what your friends’ expectations are when it comes to their exes, especially if you don’t want to get kicked out of the squad.

3A friend of your parents.

It might seem insane now, but if you’re parents are young-ish and they have friends who are even younger, and you’re old enough… It could totally happen. Again, as we get older, this becomes all the more possible. Control yourself because this only has the potential to get weird AF.

4Someone who is newly in recovery.

This is another one all about timing. People in recovery for anything aren’t undateable. No way. But if you’re doing group therapy and crushing on someone in it, or they’re working on making some major changes on their own, lay off for a little bit. Dating doesn’t always help right that very minute. There will be time if it’s supposed to happen, and you will both thank yourselves later.

5Your best friend’s nemesis.

Come on, whatever happened to solidarity?

6Your roommate.

Theoretically, the worst thing that happens here is someone eventually has to break a lease and move out, or your other roommates are irritated that you two take *extra* long showers in the morning. You’re not Nick and Jess from New Girl. Not even Nick and Jess are Nick and Jess. Find yourself a new place to crash before you get into this one. If it’s not worth the headache of moving, it’s not worth doing.

7Your best friend’s roommate.

Unless you two are soulmates, your relationship will likely end. Then you’re going to have see their face every time you go over your best friend’s house to watch their HBO…and possibly the person they’re bringing home for the night. Save yourself the icky feelings.

The person your best friend is in love with.

Not without permission at least. And even then — can’t you find your own crush?

9Your bartender at the place you always go to.

Bartenders make great mates! They have flexible schedules, make tons of cash, and can hook you up with free mozzarella sticks! But if you have a favorite spot and want to continue having this safe haven: Do not f*ck the bartender. Some of us have learned the hard way.

10The babysitter.

If you’re a single mom (or happily coupled parents who still sleep with other people) and you find yourself swooning for your hot 20-something babysitter who’s right there in your house after a failed date or one too many sangrias with the girls — stop! Don’t do this!

11Your boss.

Don’t screw your superior. If only because it can get so complicated when it comes time for promotions, raises, and reviews. Office relationships have potential sometimes, but it might be better to wait until someone switches departments or jobs altogether before you start having those candlelit dinners.

12Your employee.

See above. Also, it may or may not involve sexual harassment (flirting from a position of power over someone is not simple nor benign) and an HR nightmare.

13Your ex.

Well, flip a coin on this one. Off-limits dating and off-limits casual sex are two very different things, right? Only you know exactly how far you need to stay away.