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Real Talk: Do You Trust Your Partner?

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Snoopying Woman
Last week, “Conflicted” complained to Washington Post Advice columnist Ann Dickinson that her husband disliked her best friend. As a result, he gets angry when she talks to her friend on the phone, and perhaps equally alarming, Conflicted added, “[he] has gone so far as to hack into my e-mail account and read our e-mails to one another.”
 
*gasp!*
 
Much to my surprise (and nearly all of her readers), Dickerson failed to take issue with the husband’s snooping, instead largely scolding the wife for letting her friend interfere in her marriage, and only offering for the husband, “And he needs to grow up, too.”
 
That snooping part that Dickerson overlooked is one that I take a huge issue with. Because me? I have a personal policy against snooping… until this one time I didn’t.
 
I was dating this guy, right? From the first time I went out with him, I carried this knot around in my tummy. Something was off. And even though I’m the first one to tell women to listen to their gut (intuition = God speaking), I convinced myself I was being paranoid and not knowing how to appreciate a good man. (I’d been reading way to many relationship advice books written by men.)
 
So. He’s on my Mac. Hours later, I’m on it… and I realize his Facebook page is open. My instinct is to check his Inbox. Hold up, where did that come from? I thought I didn’t do that. But then my brain yells at me, loud, CHECK IT!!! So I do.
 
In his Inbox is a recent back-and-forth with another woman. She wants to see him. He says he’s out. She says it’s been too long. He says he’ll be by after the party. He writes back 20 minutes later asking for her apartment number. That’s the last message... at 1:30 AM.

 *gasp!*
 
Don’t judge me. Fifty percent of women have gone through their partner’s email account (41% of men have done the same.) And I note that not to pretend majority rules and we’re in the right, only to say there are a lot of us out there that don’t trust our partners — or ourselves.
 
Because isn’t that why we really snoop? We have a suspicion that something just isn’t right, but we can’t put our finger on it. But instead of going with what we know, we have to get confirmation and hard proof so we can know-know! We need to see the emails, texts, and pictures, hear voicemails, and find receipts. And even after that, some of us still need to hear him admit what he’s done to believe it’s true-true.
 
Bottomline: You can’t have a healthy relationship without trusting your partner. And if you don’t trust them, save yourself the headache (and drama) of sneaking and creeping, trust your intuition, and just leave. By the time you get to hacking into accounts, you already know what’s up: he’s playing you, and you just played yourself.  

Demetria L. Lucas is the Relationships Editor at ESSENCE and the author of “A Belle in Brooklyn: The Go-to Girl for Advice on Living Your Best Single Life” (Atria) in stores now. Follow her on Twitter: @abelleinbk for info about her upcoming book signing in Washington, DC on July 23.
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