My boyfriend and I have been dating for a long time and, for the most part, I feel like our relationship is pretty solid. But about six months ago I found a hidden album in his phone filled with pictures of girls that we both know. All the pictures are screenshots of either Snapchat or Instagram. None of the pictures are nude, they are either with bathing suits or workout clothes, but I was still really upset. We talked about this, he got very emotional and promised this would never happen again. He said that he was just thinking “like a man” and not considering my feelings in that moment. We worked past it but I just found the album again with several new pictures added to it. Is this just a masturbation issue, or am I not enough for him? We talked about it and he said he doesn’t know why he does what he does. I don’t know what to do!
While technology is great and adds a lot to life, it also creates a brand new world in terms of relationship problems. Whether it’s your boyfriend liking too many Instagram posts from another girl, stalking his Facebook past, or just wondering why he has a gallery of swimsuit pictures, it’s totally understandable that you’re unsure how to react. The fact that you’ve already had a conversation about it is good, but that’s not the end of the story.
This is not a collection of random porn stars or unknowns–these are girls he knows, and that’s what makes the situation different. It’s not a question of whether or not he’s going to run off and cheat on you, but it’s about the emotional connection that exists, at least for him. He knows these girls–their personalities and whatnot–and has some sort of history with them. That makes it completely different from just watching porn of having what guys often refer to as a “spank bank.” There is an element of flirting here, even though it might be one-way or unconscious–but it’s there all the same.
Also, his assertion that he’s “just being a guy” is a complete load of crap, and he’s just trying to justify his poor judgement. There is plenty of porn and steamy photos available that isn’t of his friends or known people, so if he’s just looking for something to get off to, there’s no need to have this specific collection on his phone. Also, whenever someone says they don’t know why they did something, it’s a total cop out–always.
But even with all that said, my biggest concern here is that you had a discussion, made your frustration clear, and he didn’t stop. Instead, he moved the folder and added to it. That shows either a complete lack of respect for you, or that he has some sort of psychological problem or addiction–or both.
Honestly, I think you have two options moving forward: give him one last chance or end things right now. He already knows that having the collection of photos is not cool with you, and he’s also shown he heard you but did it again anyway. It’s all about his respecting something that makes you uncomfortable–and if he can’t stop, it’s time to move on.
Joel Freimark has done a lot in life and seen even more. From last minute international travel to bizarre places to writing award winning books, he’s here to bring his wisdom to all your problems. He hosts a weekly advice series on Youtube and a music series also on YouTube. No question is too outrageous or personal, so go ahead and fire away! Follow him on Twitter.
Are you confused about a guy? Do you find yourself wondering, “What is he thinking?” Tell us everything in the comments! And if you have a question for Joel, email him at firstname.lastname@example.org!
Follow Gurl, Pretty Please!