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This is my first post, I really felt the urge to tell what I have been going through, because I am aware of my problem, but unfortunately can't afford myself a therapist.

The history of my snooping dates back from my previous relationship; after 9 wonderful, happy months of dating, one day I tried opening my fb page from his laptop (while he was at work) and because he hadn't logged out, I practically entered his fb. Until that moment I have never ever snooped on his phone, fb, emails, laptop, etc., because I was happily in love, I trusted him, I didn't suspect anything... But when his fb opened, it was this little devil standing on my shoulder that whispered open the message inbox and without hesitation I opened it. I was schocked - there were messages from different girls, with one of them he was talking about skype call and how she didn't send him hugs that night... I was grossed, my world crashed, I felt disappointed and betrayed... I didn't have the strength to keep on reading other messages because I felt very sick. I confronted him and he said that he was just having fun and there was nothing serious with those girls, just online fling... long story short I am not longer with him, I forgave him back then, but afterwards his fling with those girls continued and my addiction of snooping got worse, so we quit. As for now, I am in a relationship (2yrs) with a guy 5 years younger than me, he is very loving and he respects me a lot, he cares for me as noone ever did, he has never given me a reason not to trust him, but I still live with this little devil on my shoulder, who is constantly there, even wakes me up in the middle of the night and forces me to get up and snoop on my bf phone. How sick is that? I get shivers and my heart beats so fast as I run through the whatsapp msg, viber, fb, instagram, photo gallery, phone logs...you name it... then when I don't find anything I can feel this calming sensation and I go back to bed and hug him. Sometimes I find things, for example pictures of sexy, provocative girls that they send in the group of his friends, but I know most of the guys do that and I don't worry so much. The thing is in a month he is going on this bachelor's party (his brother is getting married) and they have this group on viber where they make plans for the trip. Well, you can guess, I have been reading most of the messages and though I haven't found any indecent comment from my bf, I read a msg from his brother saying that my bf would choose to be with any girl, except of jesscia (that is also my name) and that jessica will be the prettiest of all of them. There were no previous messages to this one, I guess my bf deleted the chat, maybe of fear that I might see it, and now I am left with all these scenarios in my head, surely he is talking about escort girls or I don't know... after his message there was no comment from my bf and since then I haven't open the chat. I feel really bad, first because I am addicted of snooping, second my low self esteem + the devil on my shoulder make me come up with the worst case scenarios, I can't sleep at night, all the time I think of that message and the fact that there would be escort girls... After I read the message I haven't even got near my bf phone, because I am afraid of finding out more information about the bachelor's party. I had conversation with my bf, just told him that I am afraid that he will cheat on me on the bachelor's party and he hugged me and told me that I was being silly, that no matter what he wouldn't ever think of hurting me. I know I have major problem, and I know that if I tell him that I have been constantly snooping on his phone he will be very hurt, and he will forever loose his trust in me... I just don't know how to continue this relationship. I feel like I need to go to CTB counseling, but currently I cannot afford it. Please, I need to hear your honest opinions and judgments.

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Why don't you tell him that you are having strong urges to check his messages etc (because of bad past experiences).


Then say that you want him to remove the temptation by putting security on his devices (logging out, passwords etc) so that you don't have to deal with the temptation.


You don't have to admit anything except that you have these strong urges to check (which is ok- it's ok to feel like this).


Then you won't be able to do these very inappropriate things anymore.


You will still feel insecure, but your feelings are YOUR feelings. From what you've written, you have no evidence in your current situation. They are just feelings that have got control of you.


Everything you're feeling is ok. Just that your feelings have gotten the better of you and you've started acting out in shameful behaviour. It's ok.


You can admit your desire to check his stuff and ask for his support in making it hard for you to do so. Then you won't feel so alone in it, because he'll know how you feel.


Good luck!

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My best advice for someone who has your problem, Jess is: "What you DON'T know can't hurt you" As such, stop trying to know.


Put an elastic band around your wrist and every time you have an urge to snoop on a boyfriend that gives you no reason to do so, snap that elastic band hard and get up and do something else instead. Clean your room/house/car, go to the gym, take a walk, go out some where that won't cost you any money but will take you away from his computer(s)/phone.


Keep pinging that elastic and get yourself clear of this dreadful addiction of yours. Pinging the elastic is called "aversion therapy" The sting of the elastic will take your mind off of the urge to invade his privacy as it will hopefully snap you into focusing on something else. If that doesn't work then talk to your family doctor about a referral to group therapy. It's not as expensive and depending on where you live, may even be covered by government health insurance.

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Eventually he will find out and will most likely break up with you for this massive violation of his privacy.


No, no "devil" "makes" you do anything. You CHOOSE to violate his privacy because you are punishing him for what your ex did. Except, he doesn't warrant any "punishment".


Tell him you have temptations to snoop due to your previous cheating ex (excellent suggestion, happytown). Tell him you'd like him to put a secret pass code on all of his electronics because you haven't yet taught yourself that snooping is bad.


Then, get help for your lack of trust.

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  • 2 weeks later...

There are plenty of free self help CBT options available if you google "free online cbt". You will have to make sure you complete the tasks, which isn't really different from therapy. The issue is likely bigger than a single companion to check your bfs online habits, but that is something specific to start with. A lot of cbt is record keeping of the various thoughts, emotions, and behaviours identified and seeing how these relate to each other. In this way we learn about ourselves and our habits. Then can challenge them and come up with alternative behaviours when we notice yellow flags/warning signs previously identified as related to a specific behaviour we are trying to change.

Honestly, your prior experience confirmed that this behaviour was beneficial. Conditioning can be a one time event. It makes sense that you feel the need to do this when you feel vulnerable. I'm not saying it's the best thing to do, just that it's an understandable coping mechanism. I can also relate to this as I have had several dishonest men throughout my life. But there are other ways to get confirmation that leave you feeling good about yourself afterwards.

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