It starts with a genuine curiosity or a slight inclination of dishonesty. The temptation to snoop through your guy’s cell phone is undeniably overwhelming when he leaves for work and forgets it on the kitchen counter or for some brave souls, just the few short minutes he’s on the porcelain throne.
It seems as though every that-asshole-cheated-on-me story starts with, “So, I was going through his _____.” Text messages, e-mail accounts, Facebook pages—none are off limits to a woman on a mission to find dirt on a guy. Then and only then do women give each other the subtle nod of understanding that silently admits I’ve been there. Snooping is this dirty little not-so-secret of ours that we know is morally wrong and totally embarrassing to admit to. However, the behavior is reinforced when we indeed find incriminating evidence justifying the detective work.
But before you go play Secret Agent (insert your name here), consider these reasons why going through your boyfriend’s cell phone is NOT such a good idea after all.
Respect Privacy. Having anyone go through your cell phone is a dreadful thought; it makes you feel naked and exposed. No matter how many years you’ve been together, everyone needs a bit of privacy.
If you feel guilty, it’s wrong. I’m a big believer while you are in a relationship, you shouldn’t do things you wouldn’t do in front of your partner. Going through your guy’s phone involves extensive planning on where to do it, how much time you have until he gets back, backtracking when you’re done to make it look untouched… One word: ANXIETY. If you feel uneasy, sneaky and ironically dishonest snooping, you probably should not be doing it.
Your perception becomes your reality. Text messages, in particular, are too often misconstrued; those darn winky faces are so vague! While playing detective, you’re already in the mindset that there is something to find so you are bound to take things out of context and think up an elaborate story as to why it is definitely cheating when it can be a truly harmless conversation you did not fully read or understand. After he explains that Samantha, the winky face sender, is his 12-year-old sister, you’ll feel this small *as I squint my eye through the tiny slit between my thumb and index finger*
It weakens your foundation. Trust is a major factor in a healthy, happy relationship. Duh. But while you think going through his phone to make sure you can trust him is the right move, you are setting the tone for the type of relationship you will have with him—untrusting. He will most likely find out, get mad, go through your phone, hide his, etc. Snooping is just the beginning of a serious downward spiral to the demise of your relationship. If you can’t take his word for it, you’ve got some reevaluating–not FBI work– to do.
You will get caught or tell on yourself by confronting him—either way, it’s not cute. No matter how hot you are, getting caught with your man’s iPhone in hand is not a good look. All men and women have insecurities but for some reason, seeing it on your partner is a major turn-off. No one can pull off the psycho girlfriend look very well.
It’s counterproductive to building good communication. This post isn’t encouraging turning a blind eye to valid suspicions, but initiating an open and honest conversation about the issue is a healthier solution. Having a candid discussion with your partner about something that isn’t sitting well with you or even blatantly stating your temptation to go through his phone will be received much better than telling him after you already did it. Surprisingly, a lot of problems in any relationship are caused by lack of communication. Your guy will appreciate your maturity and may even show you his phone willingly.
Honesty is the best policy. After I had been with my current boyfriend for a few months, I felt I had to disclose to him my past experiences with my last ex being dishonest and sneaky. I told him that cheating and lying are my big deal-breakers and all he did was grab a pen and paper. As he was writing, he told me he never wanted me to feel that way while being with him and handed me the password that accesses every account he has. I looked at him in shock, smiled and did the same for him. Since then, neither of us ever feel the need to snoop knowing we’re both an open book. People will sometimes surprise you when you open up and make yourself a bit vulnerable. You might just find out they want the exact same thing.
The truth always comes out. Rest assured knowing cheaters always get caught without you having to waste time trying to catch them yourself.
This topic takes me back to one of my high school teachers, Mrs. Luce, asking the class (and I don’t even remember in what context), “Is ignorance bliss or is knowledge power?” The question stopped me in my tracks being so complex for my then boys-and-cheerleading-focused brain, and searching for the answer to this question still sticks with me today.
I think it’s fair to say I can’t fully commit to either statement. There are occasions when some things are better left unsaid in a relationship and other times when you have a right to be in the know of what’s going on. Unfortunately for our generation, dating in the social media/digital communication era does not come with a handbook. There is no black-and-white formula that works for every couple. So I’ll leave you in saying I believe ignorance is bliss when you are with someone who willingly gives you the power of knowledge.
photo credit: <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/yggg/2141154996/”>guccio@文房具社</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a> <a href=”http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/2.0/”>cc</a>
photo credit: <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/65492342@N06/5961512696/”>marsmet463</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a> <a href=”http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.0/”>cc</a>
photo credit: <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/amanky/2143541036/”>amanky</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a> <a href=”http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/”>cc</a>