If you’re sure there’s no room for anything personal in a relationship, we have some bad news for you.
Sneaking around to check your partner’s messenger, social media, or email messages is not an innocent prank, but a violation of personal boundaries. If you do it yourself or if you catch someone you love spying on you, you need to figure out why and how to stop it.
Why do people read other people’s correspondence
Psychologists say there are several main reasons.
There are significant trust issues in a couple.
“Spy” does not trust his partner, fears a catch on his part, and wants to get information about possible deception to protect himself immediately. Probably, all this happens for a reason: there has already been cheating, lying, and betrayal in the couple. Or the one who spies has been deceived in a past relationship, and now he cannot trust anyone at all.
There is no intimacy between the partners.
They do not know how or do not want to share their worries and discuss problems. They keep silent, hide their discontent, and do not talk about their suspicions and fears. As a result, misunderstandings and resentments accumulate, escalate, turn into jealousy and push one of the partners to poke their nose into someone else’s phone.
One of the partners isn’t confident.
He feels that he does not deserve love, and that he is not attractive or smart enough, which means that his partner will soon grow cold to him and start cheating. The person is afraid of being deceived and reads other people’s correspondence to make sure that everything is all right. Or to find out about the infidelity as early as possible and not look like a fool later. Insecurity, according to psychologists, is one of the main causes of jealousy.
One partner wants to control the other.
He needs to know about his mate everything: where she goes, what she thinks, with whom she communicates, and what she says about him. So they go about reading correspondence, spying, installing spyware, and stealing passwords. These are all signs of emotional abuse: the person considers his partner his property and cannot let him off the hook.
Abusers are not absolute villains. They behave this way because of vulnerability, fear of failure, and insecurity, but their actions can be extremely destructive to those around them.
What’s wrong with reading other people’s correspondence
There is an opinion that there should be no secrets in a relationship. If a person does not deceive his partner, it will not offend him when he digs into his chats, notes, and letters.
But no matter how close people are, they should still have personal space, and correspondence is part of it. Reading them without permission is like breaking into a person’s bathroom when they are bathing, prying into their diary, or going through their things.
This is a display of disrespect, and such actions can end up in a fight or even a breakup.
In addition, the spy does not increase mutual trust: partners do not talk to each other about what is bothering them, but just quietly pry into someone else’s phone. And it’s very easy to misinterpret information from correspondence if you don’t know the context and background, and don’t understand the inside jokes. There is a risk of making a big mistake, winding yourself up, and offending the person you love.
Finally, correspondence can involve third parties, who obviously will not be happy that their secrets or important work information is read by someone else.
How to stop spying
Psychologists advise you to analyze what moves you and work with the cause, not the effect. That is to strengthen self-confidence and a sense of its importance, to work through (possibly with the help of a specialist) the past hurts and traumas, and more often to remind yourself that healthy relationships are built on trust and spying can ruin everything.
If you don’t feel safe, aren’t sure about your partner, and have had a sad experience with him or her, think about whether you really should be together.