How do you feel about sharing your e-mail, Facebook and cell-phone passwords with your romantic partners? Do you feel that couples are supposed to snoop on each other, or at least allow each other to snoop? Do you believe that your partner would give you access if he/she had nothing to hide?
There are many schools of thought on this issue. I changed my tune about it over time. I can recall one relationship where I would just show up at my partner’s home to see what she was doing or who might be visiting. We took turns taking the low road, and the relationship ended explosively. I was not in a good place; I was not happy with myself or my relationship.
Then, in another relationship several years ago, I left my e-mail accessible to my partner. I liked being able to read it without having to log in and didn’t feel the need to hide anything. I knew that she was what many people would call nosey, and as I assumed would happen, she read my messages … and found something that upset her – an e-mail in which I told a female friend how much she meant to me. Despite her demand for answers, I was not interested in consoling or reassuring. It was her decision to go looking for something to get upset about. It was my decision to let her stay that way.
I have no problem with my current mate reading my mail, text messages, or e-mails, or with her taking any other action that might seem invasive. However, I reserve the right not to explain myself. While I do not believe I’m conducting myself in a manner she would find objectionable, I don’t wish to take part in any exercise that has my partner investigating me or me investigating her. I cannot stop her from turning over stones, but I can avoid participating in discussions about what she finds.
As for me, I don’t check up on my partner. I have her passwords but only use them when she asks me to do so. When I get in, I don’t look around for anything; I simply follow her directions. And I don’t check her call log or text messages. I want her to conduct herself in whatever manner she feels appropriate for her at all times. I am happy with our relationship and our family situation, and if I found something that bothered me or made me feel insecure, even if it turned out to be nothing, I might not be happy anymore. And I refuse to put my hard-earned energy into seeking out trouble and misery.
Back to the question at hand: To snoop or not to snoop? That’s a decision we must all make for ourselves. But I choose to refrain and truly believe that this strategy promotes my happiness, as well as that of my mate and family, and that it makes me a more Powerful Person in a Partnership.
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