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Veggie4

I Think She Avoids Me...

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Chihiro

I used to believe that checking someone else's private communication is wrong, be it phone/email/skype whatever. As some have pointed out here, if someone were to ask my password to these things, I would be offended that they don't trust me. Using the same logic, I trusted that my asexual ex was faithful and it never even crossed my mind to think of these stuff. Until one day, when I was using their laptop to check my personal email I accidentally did alt tab and it showed me private Skype convo. And I saw them admitting their love for someone else. Thats how I found out that my ex was cheating with many women (until then I had zero reason to suspect and I thought we were in a happy relationship). Even when they were not cheating, they were talking shit about me to all their friends (yeah, I was the last person to know something was wrong in the relationship :(). 

 

Anyway, my opinion has changed after this experience. Partners should be able to randomly check private messages at any point. You can see if they are cheating, lying, unhappy or happy in the relationship just by reading random messages.

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Perhaps I just balk at the idea on a personal level for other reasons. I have always required a certain level of privacy that has nothing to do with whether I'm hiding anything and everything to do with some things being deeply personal. I have things on my phone that are for no one else besides myself. I'm not talking about anything adult-y and explicit or sexual in any way; I mean more like things I've written or images I've saved that are just... for me. Private. Perhaps pertaining to mental health stuff or whatever. 

 

I'm not saying I don't understand in this case, I get why it may seem justified. Just makes me uneasy. But then I've also been someone with actual things to hide, so possibly my moral compass is just shit.

 

Edited by Ceebs.
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anisotrophic

I share most everything... I mean, I don't think people have time to inspect everything about me (e.g. he checks my AVEN interactions sometimes, but after a while he's not interested in it). But I tend to share everything. To me, partnership has meant seeing all my unflattering and embarrassing features [1]. Digital access seems secondary to the other stuff.

 

My own inclination means I lack any instinct that checking a phone is a serious breach of trust. But I've learned I should try to understand how others feel about privacy, so I can make sure to respect their boundaries.

[1] "What's the catheter look like?" I ask. "It's just a tube." he says. Me: "I want a photo!" Him: "OK" (takes photo) Me: "This looks boring." Him: "I told you."

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3 minutes ago, anisotropic said:

My own inclination means I lack any instinct that checking a phone is a serious breach of trust. But I've learned I should try to understand how others feel about privacy, so I can make sure to respect their boundaries.

Even touching someone else's phone with permission makes me feel like I'm crossing a line hahaha. Like, whoa, wait, why are you letting me do this. 😂

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The things I consider "private" aren't even things I wouldn't share with a partner (or a close friend), that's kinda the funny part with me. I'll share my own ramble-y weird thoughts and various things I struggle with and stoner insights and quotes I like and favourite lyrics and lists of things I hate or whatever, no problem. I just don't want someone scrolling through my phone on their own, reading it. It's a violation of my personal space. My mum used to go through stuff of mine in my teens, when she was "cleaning"... so that's probably why it bothers me. I've always liked writing things down, and at that age it was on actual paper. This is undoubtedly how she learnt that I used to wish for a different family all the time and how I hated my body and was afraid of everything and was really obsessive about the things I loved. Because she read the stuff I left scattered around on bits of paper and in notebooks. I hated it.

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iff

I'm also a very private person. I would find a partner's demand to look at my phone or personal e-mails to very uncomfortable and maybe a wee bit controlling. It would probably cause an argument, from the other person's point of view because I had something to hidden but from my point of view, it would be caused by their lack of trust in mind and their insinuation that I had something to hide  which I would be upset at.

 

If you feel the need to check a partner's phone or e-mail, do you really trust them?

What else? Check their google to see their location history?

 

I would be uncomfortable with such a request.

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anisotrophic
45 minutes ago, iff said:

If you feel the need to check a partner's phone or e-mail, do you really trust them?

well, the converse is... if you aren't comfortable with a partner looking at your phone/computer... do you really trust them?

 

(I don't mean to disrespect others privacy preferences, only pointing out that this cuts both ways.)

 

46 minutes ago, iff said:

What else? Check their google to see their location history?

my partner and I continuously share google map location (it's a feature you can turn on!) it's actually pretty convenient sometimes :) 

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ryn2

I’m with ceebs on this one.  I think it has a lot more to do with a sense of personal privacy than it does with being trustworthy or not.  I grew up in a household where it was strongly stressed that paper mail is private and only to be opened by the addressee, no one (including the other parent) goes into mom’s purse or dad’s wallet, no one pokes through other people’s drawers, etc.  That plus working in/closely with IT security, where you never give out your passcode, leave me feeling like someone else touching my stuff without permission is a violation.

 

I, too, rarely have anything on my phone that *needs* hiding.  It’s just invasive and personally embarrassing to me.

 

I agree with the others who’ve said if you strongly suspect your partner of true wrongdoing and are looking for legal evidence, searching for it may be necessary... but to me by the time it gets to that point the trust is already long gone.

 

I also know that - in the aftermath of a significant breach of trust - the person who committed the offense is normally advised to be an open book.  I haven’t personally found that helpful but for some people it must be.

 

I would be more concerned about changes in behavior (someone who has never had a password on a phone suddenly does and will no longer let anyone else use it) than I would about the behavior (open versus private) itself.

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2 minutes ago, anisotropic said:

well, the converse is... if you aren't comfortable with a partner looking at your phone/computer... do you really trust them?

Yes? How would merely wanting privacy on my own device indicate me not trusting them? Not trust them to... what?

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ryn2
4 minutes ago, anisotropic said:

well, the converse is... if you aren't comfortable with a partner looking at your phone/computer... do you really trust them?

I don’t trust anyone on the planet - especially someone I have to see face-to-face - not to hurt me (potentially accidentally, not necessarily maliciously) with things I meant to keep private.

 

I am very sensitive to being teased about the wrong things, for example, and those “wrong” things could seem quite innocuous to someone else.

 

It’s self-protective...

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ryn2
5 minutes ago, Ceebs. said:

Yes? How would merely wanting privacy on my own device indicate me not trusting them? Not trust them to... what?

For me, I may trust them 100% to be upstanding and to always do their best to do the right thing/to do what they believe is right by me.

 

That still doesn’t mean I feel comfortable having them root through my private stuff.

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Yeah, that's fair, and I agree. Given that my relationship is a long-distance one, the most personal stuff that's on my phone, emails and whatnot, are things that already involve my partner anyway, and I can't think of anything I have to hide... there's genuinely nothing in my personal notes or on my camera roll or in any of my communication with anyone else that I couldn't theoretically share... but it's still a personal device that I wouldn't like poked through without my permission. Which seems quite reasonable to me. Like I said somewhere above, I feel weird using anyone else's device even if they've directly told me to do so, haha. I'm like... please watch me the entire time I'm on it, which I will keep to an absolute minimum, so you know I'm not doing weird creeper stuff. 😂

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anisotrophic
4 minutes ago, Ceebs. said:

Yes? How would merely wanting privacy on my own device indicate me not trusting them? Not trust them to... what?

Trusting them to...

not think less of you if they find something embarrassing
not misuse this access in various ways

respect the privacy of what's there and not share what they might see with others

not dig and seek things gratuitously

talk to me if they find something that concerns them...

So... there's a nuance here. I'm comfortable with access -- and I trust someone to not be weird about using it. I don't expect them to be rooting through it unless they have good reason for it, and I trust them to talk to me if there's something that concerns them.

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ryn2
5 minutes ago, Ceebs. said:

there's genuinely nothing in my personal notes or on my camera roll or in any of my communication with anyone else that I couldn't theoretically share... but it's still a personal device that I wouldn't like poked through without my permission. Which seems quite reasonable to me. Like I said somewhere above, I feel weird using anyone else's device even if they've directly told me to do so, haha. I'm like... please watch me the entire time I'm on it, which I will keep to an absolute minimum, so you know I'm not doing weird creeper stuff.

Same.

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ryn2
3 minutes ago, anisotropic said:

not think less of you if they find something embarrassing

For me it’s more that *I* think less of me if they find something embarrassing... or I think it’s horrifying and they think it’s adorable.  Ugh.

 

It’s just a visceral skin-crawly thing.

 

My mom’s off-limits purse was just lipstick, a key, a tissue, and her ID/cards.  I even felt creepy going through it after she died, as the executrix of her estate.

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@anisotropic Ah yeah, ok, I agree with all of that.

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anisotrophic
4 minutes ago, ryn2 said:

For me it’s more that *I* think less of me if they find something embarrassing... or I think it’s horrifying and they think it’s adorable.  Ugh.

 

It’s just a visceral skin-crawly thing.

 

My mom’s off-limits purse was just lipstick, a key, a tissue, and her ID/cards.  I even felt creepy going through it after she died, as the executrix of her estate.

I guess my physical world equivalent is when I think "oh shit I wonder if someone saw my sex toy"

 

and then I think "I am such a dumbass I should have put that somewhere safer"

but also then "fine whatever I have a sex toy, I'm embarrassed they might have seen it, but whatever, let's move on"

It might be that I don't have much embarrassment left in me these days. I remember being so self-conscious in the first childbirth about my body, and later I was like "whatever, it's a body, it shits and such, you've seen hundreds".

... and now thanks to AVEN and/or my partner's sexuality, I fear I've started feeling like that about sex, hah.

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iff
1 hour ago, anisotropic said:

well, the converse is... if you aren't comfortable with a partner looking at your phone/computer... do you really trust them?

 

(I don't mean to disrespect others privacy preferences, only pointing out that this cuts both ways.)

But say you were planning a surprise party by e-mail for your partner and they were demanding to see your e-mails, then this would either spoil the surprise or spoil the relationship.

 

Or presents might be ordered through the e-mail, again that would ruin the surprise.

 

My personal e-mail has income tax of other people on it, other people's financial information and a partner accessing it would be a serious breach of confidentiality.

 

I need boundaries, I need personal space and I would need a partner to understand and respect it.

 

 

Quote

 

my partner and I continuously share google map location (it's a feature you can turn on!) it's actually pretty convenient sometimes :) 

And that is your choice to do so but i feel it is different when it is being forced by the partner to share it with them which if that were the case, I would feel that I was being controlled

Edited by iff
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Oh also, though. In the early years of my previous relationship, what eventually became my marriage to my (hetero-ace) husband, my conduct and lack of respect for boundaries was absolutely horrifying. It's embarrassing to think about. I behaved like a crazy person, I assume because I had no idea what was going on with me and my, like... whole orientation shit. I developed an intense crush on a female friend of his from uni, less than a year into my relationship with him, and it was weird as hell because he had had feelings for her at one point. I logged into his email account, read through his communication with her from many years prior, copy/pasted it into emails that I would send to myself from my own email account, read them over and over and over and cry and feel sick to my stomach, get irrationally angry at him... it was nuts, I was nuts, I'd never behaved like that with anyone before and never would again. There's no excuse for it, it was flat-out shitty behaviour that I didn't even understand myself. It took me a very long time to realise that I wasn't jealous of his past feelings for her, rather that I was jealous of the way she communicated with him... because my dumb gay ass was very dumb and very gay. 😂

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anisotrophic
25 minutes ago, iff said:

 

My personal e-mail has income tax of other people on it, other people's financial information and a partner accessing it would be a serious breach of confidentiality

I expect my spouse not to breach confidentiality; certainly if he were motivated to do so, he could intercept a variety of confidential things -- and I expect I'd be able to do the same to him. Legally, there is spousal privilege to protect spouses against being forced to disclose confidential information.

 

The presents thing is annoying during the holidays. We try, and if a leak occurs, have the grace to act surprised? :)
 

28 minutes ago, iff said:

And that is your choice to do so but i feel it is different when it is being forced by the partner to share it with them which if that were the case, I would feel that I was being controlled

This isn't a forced thing? A convenience & sometimes safety thing. A family member was using it to share with someone else, and told us about it. The feature *exists* because some people use it.

My point is that you make it out as if it's ridiculous to share such with a statement like "what else?" ... and I was saying "yeah, sure, actually, I share that too"

I'm not saying it's ridiculous or strange to want privacy, but I don't think one should assume it's ridiculous or strange to be comfortable with sharing. People have different preferences, different contexts of cons/risks-of-sharing.

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anisotrophic
12 minutes ago, Ceebs. said:

I wasn't jealous of his past feelings for her, rather that I was jealous of the way she communicated with him

awww... it can be really hard to work out why something is upsetting!

 

of course, people can get dysfunctional without private access, obsessively tracking someone's online behavior e.g. in social media

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Human0id
On 1/22/2019 at 7:33 PM, Veggie4 said:

he, I have not done it. I do not suspect her of anything, but sometimes I had the opportunity and I had a moral dilemma.
 

If you had a dilemma that means you don't trust her at all.

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ryn2
1 hour ago, anisotropic said:

I guess my physical world equivalent is when I think "oh shit I wonder if someone saw my sex toy"

For me (it’s more mental stuff, but) the physical world equivalent would be more like “my boss saw my sex toy!” because a partner seeing that might be mildly embarrassing but more of a “whatever.”

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ryn2
32 minutes ago, anisotropic said:

I'm not saying it's ridiculous or strange to want privacy, but I don't think one should assume it's ridiculous or strange to be comfortable with sharing. People have different preferences, different contexts of cons/risks-of-sharing.

Completely agreed, which is why I said I would be more worried about a change in behavior within a particular individual than I would be consistent-but-different behavior from person to person.

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1 minute ago, anisotropic said:

awww... it can be really hard to work out why something is upsetting!

It was, and I feel so dumb now... like, duh? 😂 I initially just thought for some reason I was irrationally obsessed with his past and hating her and somehow needing to be the only person he'd ever cared about. Which sounds dumb as shit and selfish and narcissistic (and for a while I hated myself for being such an apparently selfish and narcissistic person, so that was fun too), and I eventually realised that wasn't it at all. I mean, I have a jealous streak, but not at all to that point. I don't really care much about people's past relationships or feelings, when it comes down to it (unless it's something they're hung up on and it's affecting the present). So finally I was like, ok, that's not it... and I became far more focused on her role in their connection and who she was as a person, to the point that I stopped caring about his part in anything and was fixated on how I could get to know her so she'd send me emails like she sent him hahaha. The funniest thing is, they were nothing more than tame chats about music and missing hanging out over the summer holidays, and she didn't even have anything beyond platonic feelings for him -- she's just very verbally affectionate with literally everyone. She and I did become friends eventually and she acted that way with me too and she's totally straight and it was very emotionally confusing. :D 

 

But yeah, that was my first experience with "HEY DUMBASS, THINK YOU MIGHT BE GAY?!" And then I stopped giving a shit about her and went back to the uncomfortable land of pretending to be hetero-ace for about three years.

 

Anywho. I behaved absolutely unacceptably in terms of respecting my husband's privacy. Embarrassing to think about.

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iff
1 hour ago, anisotropic said:

This isn't a forced thing? A convenience & sometimes safety thing. A family member was using it to share with someone else, and told us about it. The feature *exists* because some people use it.


My point is that you make it out as if it's ridiculous to share such with a statement like "what else?" ... and I was saying "yeah, sure, actually, I share that too"

I'm not saying it's ridiculous or strange to want privacy, but I don't think one should assume it's ridiculous or strange to be comfortable with sharing. People have different preferences, different contexts of cons/risks-of-sharing.

I think I had been unclear in my original post where the instant i was thinking abour the person might want to review their partners location a week afterwards to check up where they want because of suspicions rather than the instances you mention, which would be of a practical purpose.

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Serran

Hmm. My idea is more there is a suspicion - you ask - you know the answer is untrue - you look to find evidence and immediately talk to them about it. 

 

Which of course trust is already gone. You were lied to and investigated your partner. Trust disintegrated. 

 

But, sometimes it is the only way to get an honest confession of the lie. 

 

With sharing, my partner is some odd combo of ani and ceebs. She doesnt mind me seeing some things, but others are private. When I use her phone, I dont go into email or anything. I use the browser, or take photos, etc. I could, its logged in but I dont touch facebook (despite her being flirtatious with an ex sexual partner still) or whatsapp or email etc. When I visited her last, her computer has some writings and stuff and she said I could look but then got uncomfy and changed her mind, so I closed it. It is a this boundary is here, that boundary is there thing. Having a device off limits would feel rather secretive, but we have certain lines not to cross with the devices. Like, if there was a folder marked dont look on the PC, could put stuff there and it would be safe. 

 

I dont really get keeping devices off limits, if you discuss boundaries and trust the person to not go beyond them. Go into my purse, use my PC, use my phone, check my texts for me while i am driving please. But, dont read personal convos unless I say so cause might involve other peoples secrets. And if I couldnt trust a partner to follow those boundaries I would struggle to be with them. 

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ryn2
30 minutes ago, Serran said:

My idea is more there is a suspicion - you ask - you know the answer is untrue - you look to find evidence and immediately talk to them about it. 

 

Which of course trust is already gone. You were lied to and investigated your partner. Trust disintegrated. 

*nods*

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anisotrophic
35 minutes ago, Serran said:

Having a device off limits would feel rather secretive, but we have certain lines not to cross with the devices. Like, if there was a folder marked dont look on the PC, could put stuff there and it would be safe.

yeah, I think this is how it works with us -- we don't actually do anything explicit like a folder, but a sense of what sorts of things are expected?

Like, it would be surprising and unexpected if he read my email... but I can imagine it might become necessary. I'd expect him to let me know, be open about having done it? For example, I can imagine it being needed to search my email for something kid/family related that didn't get sent to him.

 

If he got suspicious and checked something because of that, I don't think I'd be too upset about it, but I really hope he'd talk about what worried him.

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ryn2
48 minutes ago, Serran said:

I dont really get keeping devices off limits, if you discuss boundaries and trust the person to not go beyond them. Go into my purse, use my PC, use my phone, check my texts for me while i am driving please. But, dont read personal convos unless I say so cause might involve other peoples secrets. And if I couldnt trust a partner to follow those boundaries I would struggle to be with them. 

I guess for me it’s mostly that there is exactly nothing in places like that - my phone, my purse, even my home computer - that someone else would need access to without going through me.  If my partner needs to use one of my credit cards, for example, I would expect them to ask rather than just grabbing one.

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