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Should I tell him I went through his phone?


StillBreathing

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A year ago, I went through my boyfriend's phone without his knowledge to see what his text and Facebook messages were like. I think I was looking for evidence to "prove" that he didn't really love me and/or was more interested in other women instead of just me. I was and still am very insecure, and that is what prompted it. I basically didn't understand (and sometimes still don't understand) why he'd want to be with me, as I don't feel I'm terribly interesting nor do I feel I have a lot to offer. I was in an abusive relationship for 8 years prior; I have severe anxiety and horrible self-esteem, PTSD, etc. I have been seeing a trauma therapist for about a year and while am not recovered, I am now in a better place.

 

This snooping in particular centered around a mutual female friend whom he hooked up with a couple times many years ago, and whom he was friends with for 10 years. I felt threatened by her and their friendship, and at my lowest point I basically asked him to not be friends with her anymore. I realized how wrong that request was the next day and I took it back, begging him not to tell the mutual friend. He said he would not, but unfortunately that was not the truth. Furthermore, he denied telling her about it until I once again snooped in his phone and realized he had. It caused IMMENSE trouble within our circle of friends that I don't think will ever fully blow over, though I did apologize to the mutual friend face to face. Of course, he and I were deeply stressed by this experience, too. It was a good month or two before he stopped being angry about it, and it was about 6-7 months before I stopped feeling like I was about to lose my mind with worry.

 

Sometimes when my anxiety gets really bad (like now), I start worrying that it's happening again. I get paranoid that he is once again afraid to tell the truth for fear of creating another huge fight where I weep for hours and can't keep food down and cry to him that I'm scared he's going to leave me. My new anxiety coping skills tell me that I have no evidence for being concerned about his behavior, but my paranoia brain is telling me I need to see his text messages in order to discern the truth. I have not snooped again though sometimes when my mind runs away with me, the urge is there. The more worked up I get, the more anxiety I feel and the more that paranoia seeps in. It's a vicious cycle.

 

I should let it be known that I am NOT concerned about anything unseemly between my boyfriend and the mutual friend. My only fear is of him still not feeling comfortable being truthful with me in order to avoid one of my meltdowns.

 

My question: should I tell him I went through his phone a year ago? I think he suspects I did and sadly when he asked how I found out, I myself lied and said "I just had a feeling". I was afraid he'd freak out and dump me. I almost feel worse about that lie than I do about the snooping. I know I can't demand truth when I myself am not truthful, but I just can't figure out if I ought to let this sleeping dog alone or not.

 

EDITED TO ADD: We have been together almost three years (friends for 5) and are very serious about each other (own a house and want to marry). He is wonderful and supportive in every way and has been a huge help in my PTSD recovery process.

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Trust in your therapy first of all. Actively use those techniques when you feel this urge. Remember the irrationality of it. He is with you still through all of your issues, he "hooked up years ago" and did not and is not dating her he is dating YOU. If you can't learn to trust him then you aren't being fair to him nor to yourself. He is not dating her he is dating you and DO NOT look at that phone again under any circumstance. What truth are you looking for anyways? He right in front of you and with you, that is so much proof. Best of luck.

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It sounds like you want to tell him this to relieve your guilt. Why not take a new trusting approach and just stop doing this?

My only fear is of him still not feeling comfortable being truthful with me in order to avoid one of my meltdowns. He is wonderful and supportive in every way and has been a huge help in my PTSD recovery process.
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Thank you for replying, Wiseman2! This has been my approach - no more snooping. You're right, I feel horribly guilty about it and do want to relieve that guilt, I guess. I feel like a hypocrite and I feel that it's disrespectful for me to not be 100% honest with him, even if it means randomly saying, "Hey, I was a jerk a year ago and went through your phone." I am a horrible judge of knowing what to say (or not say) and when, so that's why I'm not sure if this is a wise approach. Maybe I should just let it go and move on.

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I don't think it would serve any purpose in telling him, (imo). However, I wouldn't be happy about him discussing your issue with the group of friends you both share. This should be a private matter that needs to be addressed between the two of you.

 

At any rate, you're better off seeking some type of therapy/counseling regarding your insecurities.

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I don't think it would serve any purpose in telling him, (imo). However, I wouldn't be happy about him discussing your issue with the group of friends you both share. This should be a private matter that needs to be addressed between the two of you.

 

I completely agree - we did discuss that and he agreed not to do that anymore. The mutual friend was his sounding board so it was a little rough on him, but I think he gets it now. I know I can't control what he says or discusses (and that it's not right to expect to be able to), but I did let him know that I was in no way OK with problems between us being discussed amongst mutual friends. Thank you for taking the time to reply!

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My question: should I tell him I went through his phone a year ago?

 

No.

 

Ask yourself what, exactly, you'd expect BF to DO with that information beyond feeling lousy about it and lousy about you.

 

Whenever you fear your own drama the most, stop creating it.

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