‘Sex and the City’: Was Carrie Bradshaw a Terrible Girlfriend?

Sex and the City was, perhaps, the most iconic show of the late 1990s and early 2000s. The series is experiencing a second wind thanks to streaming services, and fans are happily enjoying their favorite moments with Carrie Bradshaw and her friends, once again. While for years, everyone wanted to be just like Carrie, upon closer inspections, the character had a lot of flaws. The fact that she was a pretty awful girlfriend to multiple men may have escaped us on the first run-through, but upon closer inspection, it’s obvious.

Carrie didn’t respect people’s boundaries

Carrie didn’t recognize the boundaries of the men she dated. During her relationship with Mr. Big, she repeatedly ignored clues that he didn’t want her to get too close and pushed the point anyway. Yes, Mr. Big was wrong too. He was aloof and cold towards Carrie on multiple occasions. While his behavior often wasn’t great, she consistently pushed his boundaries, and that needs to be called out, too.

Sarah Jessica Parker (Carrie Bradshaw) and Chris Noth (Mr. Big) act in a scene from the HBO television series "Sex and the City"
Sarah Jessica Parker (Carrie Bradshaw) and Chris Noth (Mr. Big) | Paramount Pictures/Newsmakers

Screen Rant notes that Carrie’s decision to show up at the church Big attends with his mother is a massive red flag. She was told, in no uncertain terms, that he didn’t want to introduce anyone to his mother, but Carrie refuses to accept no for an answer. If you think about it, it’s pretty inappropriate behavior that would likely scare anyone away.

Her expectations were completely out of sync with reality

Her expectations were pretty out of whack, too, if you think about it. When Carrie decides to pursue Aidan Shaw, again, after breaking his heart, she expected things to go back to normal. She even expected to maintain her friendship with the man she cheated with. Aidan was forced to forgive her while she sobbed all over him, and he does, which made him a good guy. Carrie, however, continued to take advantage of that quality.

She somehow expected Aidan to not only be okay with her maintaining a friendship with Mr. Big but then she invited him over to Aidan’s house in the country. Aidan may have been too good-natured for his own good because he let it all happen. That doesn’t mean it wasn’t inherently insensitive on Carrie’s part.  

Carrie is a liar

Carrie apparently has very few issues with lying. Sure, she acts like she’s an honest person, but if you look at the evidence, she lied pretty often.  Carrie lied to Aidan about how much she smoked, then later lied to him about quitting the habit. She lied about why she wouldn’t wear the ring around her finger, too.

She wasn’t just a liar when it came to her romantic relationships, either. She lied to her friends on a fairly regular basis. In fact, she attempted to keep her relationship with Mr. Big a secret from her pals during the second season of the series. She also tried to lie to Charlotte York when she caught her in the middle of her affair with Big.