Guys Snoop, Too

Name: Nash |  | Location: Toronto , Ontario, Canada |Question: Hi Moxie,hollowayjudge

Long time reader and first time sending you a question. Love your no-nonsense feedback and often too frank approach and I think this kind of reality check is just what the doctor ordered.

I’m a 43yo guy and I’ve been dating this woman for about a yr now. I love HR to death and to be honest I’m not sure if the problem lies with me and underscores some insecurities I may have or if this is the norm with women.

My girlfriend is about to move in with me. We’ve been planning and talking about this for a while and it’s finally happening. I’m pretty excited about that!!

My concern is that I’ve read some of her text messages (I know, I know…crucify the bad guy now) and while she tells me she does not have any unresolved feelings for any of her exes, I found 2 of them that she has been pretty open and saying that she still longs for them sexually. I’m a pretty open minded guy but I also have old fashioned values and I find this very offensive. Am I just kidding myself and worried for nothing since she assures me that I’ve nothing to worry about? Do women text their exes like this a lot? It seems like she’s always checking out the grass on the other side and can’t help but feel like she’ll bail of she finds serving that seems better.

Am I crazy or do you and/or your readers think that this is totally inappropriate?

Appreciate your insights on this. |Age: 43

 

Love your no-nonsense feedback and often too frank approach and I think this kind of reality check is just what the doctor ordered.

I hate statements like this. You know why? Because I highly doubt the same words would be used to describe a man. I never hear a man referred to as “no nonsense.” It’s as if, just because I’m a woman, I’m expected to have this softer tone and approach. So anything that doesn’t come across as coddling is branded “harsh” or “brutal.”  I keep seeing all these dating advice blogs pop up, mostly written by women, and they all seem very quick to point out that they’re advice is “no nonsense.” Don’t do that to yourselves.  Don’t feed in to that. No man would justify his opinions with a warning label. They just wouldn’t. You want to be honest, be honest. You shouldn’t ever try to sound abrasive or offensive just to get tongues wagging. But you also shouldn’t assign yourself certain descriptors that are really just back handed compliments applied to women who speak their mind. Too frank, my ass.

Moving on.

My girlfriend is about to move in with me. We’ve been planning and talking about this for a while and it’s finally happening. I’m pretty excited about that!!

Not buying it. You’re over selling it. In fact, I think the whole reason you snooped is because you were hoping to find something so you’d have an excuse to slow things down.

My concern is that I’ve read some of her text messages (I know, I know…crucify the bad guy now)

Don’t hang your head and offer some cutesy “aw, shucks” like some puppy that just piddled on the rug. You don’t feel bad for what you did. You’re making light of it.Another reason why I don’t think you’re nearly as offended as you’re claiming to be. You just found yourself a reprieve.

while she tells me she does not have any unresolved feelings for any of her exes, I found 2 of them that she has been pretty open and saying that she still longs for them sexually. I’m a pretty open minded guy but I also have old fashioned values and I find this very offensive.

Really? Do you watch porn? When you jerk off, do you think about other women besides your girlfriend? Is that offensive? Granted, it’s not totally the same thing. But sending erotic text messages is a far cry from sleeping with someone else. Why would you be offended at the idea that your girlfriend fantasizes about other men? Do you honestly believe that when we’re lying there beneath you, we’re always thinking about you?  I can’t tell you how many times thoughts of Jeremy Renner have topped me off. Or an ex. There are people – men and women – out there who engage in this kind of activity with absolutely no plan of ever acting on it. It’s all about intention. This is where communication is key and why couples need to check in with each other and put their egos aside.

There’s been a lot of talk here about what turns a woman on and how women are more emotional and therefore cheat less or for different reasons.  All this stereotyping is encouraging the wrong expectations. Like how, as long as your showering a woman with attention and affection and offer her the idea of security, she won’t stray. That all we need to stay faithful is a ring or our name on a lease.

Women have a lot of the same impulses and desires and fantasies as men. Women have sex for many of the same reason men have sex, and it has nothing to do with wanting an emotional connection or to feel safe. I think a lot of men are choosing to ignore that and sticking their heads in the sand because the truth scares them too much. Yes, guys, keeping us satisfied has gotten more difficult.

Am I just kidding myself and worried for nothing since she assures me that I’ve nothing to worry about? Do women text their exes like this a lot? It seems like she’s always checking out the grass on the other side and can’t help but feel like she’ll bail of she finds serving that seems better.

Well, you were worried before you snooped. That’s why you snooped. But were you really worried? Or was that just your cover? People are going to flame me for my response here, but it doesn’t sound to me like you’re ready for this next step. I think you were looking for something, a reason, to put on the brakes. There appears to be reservations on both sides. I think what concerns me most is how you seem to be surprised that a woman is behaving in a way that is generally considered to be male behavior. The statement implies that you know and accept that men do it. So why are you so surprised that a woman might, too?

Rarely is our behavior ever motivated by one thing. It’s not that simple. There are always secondary motives driving our actions and decisions. Could she be texting her exes for the vicarious thrill? Sure. But my guess is there is more to it. Just like I think there’s more to your snooping than just a nagging gut feeling. You two both need to have a..heh…frank and no nonsense discussion about how you really feel about taking this next step. The texting and the snooping are merely symptoms of deeper issues.

And you know what? It’s okay to be afraid or worried or want to change the pace of a relationship. It’s actually quite normal. What you want to avoid is moving forward with something because you think you’re supposed to as opposed to genuinely wanting to.

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76 Responses to “Guys Snoop, Too”

  1. Trouble Says:

    On the flip side, I haven’t often texted my former boyfriends and told them that I sexually desire them while in an exclusive relationship with a guy with whom I see a longterm future. So, while, he may not be ready for this step forward, I suspect she isn’t either.

    Maybe what is needed is a face to face conversation where both talk about their concerns/fears/goals. I don’t think it’s appropriate for a woman (or a man) in a committed relationship to be sexting with an ex.

    But hey, call me old-fashioned. It probably fits.

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    • Capt. Jack Sparrow Says:

      Sexting with an ex and fantasizing about him/her from time-to-time are totally different. Just as sexting and the act of sex are totally different.

      While fantasies may be harmless and even healthy, an actual secret relationship on the side is cheating, whether it’s sexting (emotional) or sexual (physical) or both.

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    • Crotch Rocket Says:

      “I don’t think it’s appropriate for a woman (or a man) in a committed relationship to be sexting with an ex.” This is the flip side of something I said a few days ago: I know I want a committed relationship when I lose interest in sex (and, by extension, sexting) with others. Corollary to both: if you’re still sexting with an ex, it’s not appropriate to get into (or stay in) a committed relationship.

      “Maybe what is needed is a face to face conversation where both talk about their concerns/fears/goals.” I agree. That sort of conversation should happen long before moving in together–and regularly throughout the relationship. The worse the couple’s communications skills, the more vital this is and the more often it should happen. If necessary, get a therapist to teach you how to do it, though that needn’t be an ongoing thing unless you are unable to resolve the issues that come up without one.

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  2. btrflynaia Says:

    Moxie, You sound very bitter in your response. He shouldn’t have snooped. If you are in a loving committed relationship it is disrespectful to send anyone sexual test messages ex or not. Period!

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 33 Thumb down 2

    • Andrew Says:

      Of course we are going to come back at you hard Moxie. It’s the harshness of your tone that suggests some issues of your own in your own past. All the points you make may be valid or partially valid. But the same way you don’t like the no-nonsense bit from the OP, I don’t like the way you crucify this guy.

      My policy on snooping is this. If someone has been with someone a while and they have never snooped, there has to be a reason why they suddenly snooped. Your reason may be valid, but in most cases it’s because the snooping party senses some behavior change or some gaurded behavior on the snooped party’s part. She was probably was quite guarded about her texting and he noticed. There had to be some secretive behavior on her part that suddenly caused him to snoop. And women do the same when guys display this kind of secretive or guarded behavior. It’s a human thing, not a gender thing, and we are all more perceptive to these behaviors than we realize.

      Moxie gimme a break, Do you plan on living with a guy who is sexting with his exes. And if you snopped and found out, would you you really feel unjustified in your snooping?

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      • Andthatswhyyouresingle Says:

        It’s the harshness of your tone that suggests some issues of your own in your own past.

        Oh, please. Funny how when I give it to the women in pretty much the exact same manner, I don’t hear a peep from the men about my “tone.” I’ve said THE EXACT same things to women when they write in about snooping. And I’ve said it with the EXACT same “tone.”

        Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 11 Thumb down 11

        • Andrew Says:

          I have given it to you before on women too. But all that is really just a distraction to the central issue. He snooped because of something he sensed was amiss. He did not suddenly snoop because he wants out of moving in with her.

          Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 9 Thumb down 1

          • Andthatswhyyouresingle Says:

            He snooped because he’s ambivalent about moving in with her. He wants to know where he stands, but couldn’t just ask because that makes him look insecure. This guy has very specific ideas of how men and women “should” behave. He thinks, I believe, that a man expressing insecurity looks weak. So he’ll only do it if he has an excuse, one that he believes justifies his insecurity.

            Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 5 Thumb down 6

            • Andrew Says:

              OK Moxie we are never going to agree on his reason for snooping. So let’s leave that alone. My two other questions are these:

              Would you like to live with a guy who is sexting with his exes? And if you snopped and found out, would you really feel unjustified in your snooping?

              Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

              • Andthatswhyyouresingle Says:

                I’d like to think that my partner and I have an honest relationship where we discuss things pretty frankly, including sexual desires and how we feel about the progression of the relationship. Not sure if you can tell, but I’m pretty confrontational and communicate what I might be sensing. .If I sense something is off, I say it. Over a long, long time I’ve struggled with tempering this, as I know it’s not necessarily a positive attribute. But if I think someone is unhappy, then I speak up. I’ve been that girl who thought nothing of snooping, and the true reason why I did it was because I was insecure.

                Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 0

                • Andrew Says:

                  My respect to you for such frankness on past mea culpas. Confession is good for the soul!

                  I have never snopped because I am way too full of myself, and I have tried to temper that over the years. But if I did snoop, it would be because I detected something amiss in a situation where I had an extremely high emotional or, for that matter, material stake.

                  Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

                  • Andrew Says:

                    To further add. We all really do go along with this snooping thing under high stakes situations. We all do sign on to the Patriot Act where the government listens in on our conversations and everyone’s conversations around the world. We just have to stop being judgemental when someone admits to snooping unless we really have the complete story.

                    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

                  • Andrew Says:

                    Screwed up the first line. Should have read:
                    My respect to you for such a frank mea culpa on past transgressions.

                    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  3. The Mrs. Says:

    I disagree. I haven’t yet read more articles (as this one popped in my email) so I haven’t gotten a full feel for your style but I feel like you completely trampled over this poor man. The reality is, no woman or man that has committed to a relationship should be texting flames (old or new) expressing their sexual desires. You are right; texting is not at all the same as action and I know that there are many women that think about other men but she is taking the first steps in acting upon it. Nothing good can come of this, especially when they are planning to move in together. I also feel as though he should have something to worry about not because she’s texting her ex but because she’s not being honest with her feelings. She’s telling him that she no longer wants her ex yet telling her ex she desires him sexually. As a grown woman, she should be able to tell him “Yes, I do sometimes desire my ex’s but…” and explain herself. Maybe he doesn’t have anything to worry about but being sneaky doesn’t show that. I’m just saying, don’t down the guy because he made a few mistakes because if it were a woman doing the same thing this article would have been a bit different…

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    • Crotch Rocket Says:

      “Maybe he doesn’t have anything to worry about but being sneaky doesn’t show that.” Exactly. Being sneaky shows a guilty conscience: she knows what she’s doing is wrong. However, she keeps doing it.

      “if it were a woman doing the same thing this article would have been a bit different…” Very true, as demonstrated by the many women who’ve written in with roughly the same story.

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  4. Anna Says:

    I agree with you about the “no nonsense” business, it’s uber annoying; but I think you allowed your annoyance with the OP to colour your response here. I see no reason to believe he’s not excited about moving in with her and taking the next step and his question was a fair one, though the snooping was uncool. It’s not really about whether or not she has fantasies about other guys, it’s about the texting exes and actually telling them that she still desires them. That’s not cool in my opinion and definitely a red flag for the relationship. He needs to ask himself what’s behind the snooping, obviously there’s trust issues and he needs to be honest with his girlfriend about what he found.

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    • Andthatswhyyouresingle Says:

      My annoyance is with the whole act of snooping. Bottom line…you’re going to find something that sets of warning bells. Unless you know the whole story, your imagination is going to run wild. By now, people have to know this. I just don’t understand why you’d be making plans ot move in with someone that you didn’t 100% trust and who’s privacy you would so easily violate. That’s love?

      Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 10 Thumb down 17

      • Capt. Jack Sparrow Says:

        I’m annoyed at the whole act of sexting an ex when she’s planning to move in with the OP. Between sexting an ex and snooping, which is the greater evil?

        I’m not sure how OP is letting his imagination run wild. If the sexting says OP’s gf yearns sexually for two of her exs, that’s a terrible sign for OP’s future prospects with this girl. However he got that information, he has it now. He needs to take it into account. He needs to confront his gf before he moves in …

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        • Andthatswhyyouresingle Says:

          He never says she was sexting!!!!! You guys are the ones taking that leap. Sexting involves graphic sexual expression. We have NO IDEA what she’s saying i these texts. We only know what he says, and this guy’s character should IMMEDIATELY be questioned just by the fact that he snooped. He was already insecure. Anything she said in likely being processed through those those filters.

          Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 6 Thumb down 24

          • Crotch Rocket Says:

            “‘she has been pretty open and saying that she still longs for them sexually.'” To me, this says she was sexting. Whether it was explicit enough to for a NC-17 rating or just an R rating is irrelevant. Flowery language does not change the message.

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          • Trouble Says:

            I don’t know what your definition of sexting is, Moxie, but telling an ex that I sexually desire him via text would fit the definition inside my head.

            I can be a huge flirt, and I’m not going to lie and say I’ve never fantasized about another man, but I’ve never remotely had the desire to send a text to a man that isn’t my boyfriend, telling him that I sexually desire him. That would be clearly over my line, and if I caught a partner doing it, it would be grounds for ending the relationship.

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      • Andrew Says:

        Fairy Tale World there! It’s never that perfect. We are all complex beings. There is always something about us that does not match up with someone’s expectations. People snoop when something is amiss. Of course there are dysfunctional people who just snoop from day one. But normally, if someone suddenly snoops after seeing or being with someone a while, they sense something is quite not right.

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  5. CuriousinTheChi Says:

    Dear OP,

    Pay no attention to Moxie’s advice except for maybe the last two paragraphs. The first 95% of that response was sexist, judgmental, presumptuous grandstanding.

    However, the last seven lines are about right. You should have a frank conversation with her that you’ve been having some fears, and that what you found makes you nervous. You’re about to start a life together, and you don’t want to have it begin with a secret. Think of it this way, if you say nothing about it, regardless of what anyone here tells you, it’s going to eat you up every time you hear her phone get a text. You don’t want that.

    You’ll probably get in some trouble for snooping if your fears are unfounded, and if they weren’t unfounded, you’re screwed anyway. That’s a price you’ll have to pay, but it’s better than having your heart skip a beat each time her phone goes off.

    Curious in The Chi.

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  6. Paula Says:

    Curious about the OPs sex life with his girlfriend — he doesn’t mention that at all. She said she doesn’t have unresolved feelings for the exes and that he has nothing to worry about, but all that tells me (if she’s telling the truth) is that she doesn’t wish she were still in a relationship with them. But, it sounds like she might be wishing she was still able to do them once in a while — were they the bad boys who rocked her world, but not appropriate for anything long-term?

    If the OP and her are in a rut sexually, or they’re together because they see each other as relationship material and thus willing to forgo some of the sexual fireworks, then maybe the way to deal with things is to try to shake things up a little in the bedroom. If you move in together, perhaps she fears that the two of you might become even more domesticated and routine-bound, and she might start to feel even more itchy for someone else. I don’t know what the sexts say or how long ago they were, so it’s hard to say how much of a threat to your relationship they pose, but going for broke sexually can’t hurt, right? Try to pound those thoughts right out of her head (in a manner she digs, of course…)

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

    • fuzzilla Says:

      That’s certainly possible she’s sexually frustrated and acting out by texting those other guys. Maybe their sex life is great and she feels panicky about commitment. Grist for the “frank discussion” mill. They should definitely not move in together with so many unresolved issues clouding everything.

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      • fuzzilla Says:

        I didn’t realize this posting was so old; it was on the front page like it was new.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  7. Andthatswhyyouresingle Says:

    I found 2 of them that she has been pretty open and saying that she still longs for them sexually.

    Make note of two things:

    1. He never says she initiated the conversations.

    2. He never says she “sexts” with these men.

    What he says is that she “longs for them sexually.” Now, I don’t know about any of you, but I’ve had a guy or two pop up with a text trying to rekindle the magic, so to speak, and trying to get me to engage in a discussion about our past. Just because I might say to them “Yeah, the sex was great” doesn’t mean I’m trying to initiate or set up a tryst. And just because you’re in a new relationship doesn’t mean you have to completely shut off certain sides to you. Agreeing with a man that the sex we had was hot isn;t disrespectful. Neither is reminiscing.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 8 Thumb down 31

    • Crotch Rocket Says:

      “And just because you’re in a new relationship …” The OP says they’ve been together for about a year. To me, that’s not “new”.

      “… doesn’t mean you have to completely shut off certain sides to you.” No, but the central feature of a monogamy is that you direct those “certain sides” of yourself to your partner. Otherwise, what’s the point?

      “Agreeing with a man that the sex we had was hot isn;t disrespectful. Neither is reminiscing.” I would find both disrespectful and wouldn’t do either myself. If an ex or FWB goes there when I’m in a relationship, I shut it down; if they persist (which is rare), I stop talking to them. And I think it’s reasonable to expect the same from my partner.

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    • wishing u well Says:

      “Agreeing with a man that the sex we had was hot isn;t disrespectful. Neither is reminiscing.”

      I’m a little curious here…because that statement seems to go against common sense, especially when it comes to past lovers. Call me cynical, but I have yet to ever hear of a male ex bringing up the former sex life to a past lover for purely innocent reasons. To treat such a conversation with the same flippancy that one does a conversation about the weather both oversimplifies the situation and is a little naive. The exes are testing the waters to see if she’ll be up for another round. So they stop short of actually ASKING for it outright. Big deal…putting the thought her head is step one on their end. ANY type of indulgence in the positive from her is not cool….it’s like poking a hole in a dam. If she lets that type of thing continue unabated…it can eventually escalate into a much larger problem. Committed relationships require mutual respect – and with the prevalent “anything goes, what’s the worst that can happen” attitude in society today, it’s better to be safe than sorry. When the past knocks with a specific inquiry such as that, the door is best left unopened.

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  8. Saywhat! Says:

    HOOOOOOOOOOOLLLLLLLLLDDDDDD UPPPPPPPPPPPP! Why is everyone bashing Moxie? No one is even saying anything about the fact this guy SNOOPED. Moxies focus was addressing the fact of UNCERTAINTY. Correct me if I’m wrong Mox.

    this guy clearly has reservations and seems a bit in denial. His actions were NOT honest just as much as his GF wasn’t BUT the point of the letter was not about HONESTY. He’s is asking us to validate HIS inappropriate actions by taking his side without checking himself first.

    THAT is the real issue here. Why or even better HOW on earth did the OP and his GF get as far as having discussions about moving in if uncertainty was on his mind, AND we all know something had to be going on for him to SNOOP. Clearly finding texts in her phone was not the first time he’s suspected something.

    Sounds to me the poster has got to figure out and get to know his GF a little better and NOT to look to be so judgemental about what she does. Refocus and -re-evaluate YOUR actions.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 10 Thumb down 17

    • Andthatswhyyouresingle Says:

      You are correct.

      How can someone be genuinely excited about moving in with someone and at the same time be offended by their actions? The two thoughts contradict themselves. Had he said he “was” really looking forward to it, I probably wouldn’t have taken the approach i did, as then his thoughts would be consistent. If she’s “always” checking out the grass on the other side, then why are you moving in together?

      Inconsistency, contradiction, conflict = deception of some kind. Probably self-deception. he’s telling himself he’s excited and this is what he wants, but his actions say differently.

      Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 6 Thumb down 7

      • Crotch Rocket Says:

        “How can someone be genuinely excited about moving in with someone and at the same time be offended by their actions?” There are many reasons he could be “excited” about living together, and not all of them are incompatible with being offended by her actions. Notice that he doesn’t say he loves her or could see himself marrying her, just that he’s been “dating” her. Perhaps he’s “excited” about the prospect of more regular sex, a person to share the bills or something else. That’s why most couples cohabitate, after all: to gain a Roommate With Benefits.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 3

        • chuckrock Says:

          he says he ‘love HR to death” i took that as him forgetting the E and that he ‘loves HER to death’. Did i misinterpret that?

          Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

          • Crotch Rocket Says:

            Ah, I missed that. I couldn’t even see it when you told me the words to look for; I had to use my browser’s search function. Interesting, that.

            Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  9. NYdesignGuy Says:

    Human Nature

    OP – You screwed up, you acknowledged it to us. Now you have to do it with her and communicate what you felt and you need to see what she feels. You both did something behind each others backs and will need to work through this. Silence isn’t the answer nor is further snooping. The most unfortunate part of this is it requires two good people to make it work, If one is dishonest then this will just be the first time and it must be taken into account if a pattern starts showing itself. But you’ve been with her for a year, things sound great and I think you know what you have to do.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

  10. sarah Says:

    If i were the OP, I’d want to know why she was sexting her exes. Like, is there something missing from her current sex life with him??Regardless, it is inappropriate on her part. He snooped because he suspected something was up. It was not right of him. but it is also not right of her. A guy watching porn is very different from what the girlfriend is doing. i suspect that if one of the exes took her up on the offer, she would jump at the chance to sleep with them.

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  11. Vox Says:

    This letter demonstrates why I have never snooped and never will. What he found is just too borderline – why drive yourself crazy over a borderline issue? If these two people were genuinely happy, then why snoop at all? It sounds like this guy read a LOT of her text messages too, didn’t just look for the smoking gun. I think Moxie is probably right, there is more to the reason why he did this beyond just for the sake of curiosity. The OP is just going to have to nut up and admit what he did, so he can discuss his concerns with his girlfriend.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 0

  12. HmNotCool Says:

    I must say, I’ve never commented on this site before and I normally agree with everything Moxie says, until NOW. I truly believe that Moxie got so hung up on the “no nonsense” and the belief that she thinks it’s sexist that she totally bashed this guy throughout her entire response.

    I agree that he is WRONG for snooping through her phone, I also agree with Moxie’s earlier comment, he did NOT say she is “sexting” but “she has been pretty open and saying that she still longs for them sexually” which is a huge difference. However, yes he snooped but look what he found out. Her engaging in texts of sexual nature with her exes is NOT cool in any way (and this is coming from a female who has cheated in the past myself). Exes are the easiest to go back and have sex with again, I’d be seriously concerned if I were in his shoes. I do not know the context of the text messages, but he needs to nip this in the bud ASAP. Because I guarantee, if he isn’t satisfying her enough in the bedroom and her ex was, she’ll go screw her ex just to get what she needs in that department.

    What this guy needs to do is have open communication with his girlfriend. If they’re at the point of moving in together, he shouldn’t have a problem approaching her about what he discovered. If he is nervous about discussing it with her, then they have bigger issues to deal with than him snooping through her phone. Relationships need to be based on trust and open communication in order to succeed, and it seems that he may be lacking in both of those areas…

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  13. Saj Says:

    Messy. A different perspective on this is she may be feeling a bit of panic about the prospect of moving in together thus reaching out to her exes for old comfort which of course if not careful can turn into old flirting and like Moxie stated men can love to try to push the conversation into hearing that their sexual prowess is missed.

    People like to use the argument all the time that porn and sexting with people we know are two different things and much less dangerous and this is true. However what if porn has zero effect for some women and sexting is the only thing that does work? So it’s nothing period and living like a nun or sexting and getting in trouble when caught. Things become much messier for many women then those are your only two options for sexual relief.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 7

    • Trouble Says:

      If the only thing that gets your sexual motor going with your current relationship is porn or trading sexy texts with an ex-boyfriend, your relationship has some problems that need to be addressed.

      I know I’m in love when the only person i can think about sexually is my guy (an echo of CR’s sentiment). The way that I protect that love is by keeping my focus on him, and not allowing my fantasies to drift too far afield from him. If I need to get horny, I think about my partner…the way he smells, the way his body feels agaist my naked skin, the way his strong hands grip my body…you get the picture. Entertaining a lot of unappropriate fantasies about other men can turn into a really ugly reality. I’ve seen this happen to friends, and it isn’t a good outcome.

      I protect my fantasy life because by doing so, I protect my fidelity to my partner.

      Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 16 Thumb down 1

      • Paula Says:

        I think it was Divorced Joe who said it here recently, something to the effect of “you can’t control your desires, but you can control what you do about them.” Some of us, even those who have remained completely monogamous within relationships, don’t have a monogamous brain, and can’t really control our fantasy life and what pops into our heads unbidden. However, indulging that through sexual communication (of whatever nature, whether “sexting” or not) is something you can control.

        Maybe it would really turn her on to be sexting with the OP, or for him to be doing some of the things in bed that her exes used to do to her, which is why they need to talk about it rather than her turning elsewhere to get something she’s not getting from him.

        Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 0

        • Saj Says:

          Living in Utah you have a lot of women who pressure their husbands to not look at porn because it really upsets them and the husbands agree. The husbands just instead of doing the noble sounding thing like trouble suggests and just focus all of their sexual thoughts on their wives just still watch porn anyway in secret.

          Some drives are hard to control through will power alone and noble intentions alone.

          Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

  14. nathan Says:

    Moxie seems to keep posting these snooping partner letters, and I find it interesting how often people downplay the significance of such actions. When someone snoops around, it’s because they don’t trust their partner, but don’t know how to face that lack of trust head on. Perhaps they feel their partner will lie about something, or will flip out if something is brought up – both of which are signs of deeper trouble in the relationship. Whether the snooping is justified or not, in the end, it represents a weak sense of trust.

    As for the text messages, speaking about sexually longing exs to those exs is not the same as fantasizing about someone from the past. Many people have fantasies about others that they’d never act out in real life. However, if you’re making comments to someone you used to be intimate with, that’s opening a door – however small the crack – towards something possibly happening in the future. Perhaps it’s seen as innocent flirting on the part of the girlfriend in the story above, but if it’s a regular thing – it’s like planting seeds in a fallow field. She may have no intention to directly act on it now, but the continued line of intimate talk between her and the ex could easily sprout under the right conditions.

    The relationship gets rocky. The ex consoles her. They both still have a bit of the torch for each other. Throw in a few glasses of wine or beer…

    If she were just texting her exs in a friendly manner, then the boyfriend would just be being jealous and possessive. But she’s crossing the line with the sexual longing comments, and something just seems off about the level of trust and commitment in this relationship.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

    • Divorced Joe Says:

      When someone snoops around, it’s because they don’t trust their partner, but don’t know how to face that lack of trust head on.

      That may be true in some cases, but is over simplistic in others. It isn’t uncommmon for one person to avoid every attempt for the other to discern the truth. In other words, it’s not the snooper (or the person hiring the private investigator) not knowing how to face that lack of trust, but the other person trying avoid being held responsible.

      The reason there are detectives is because the guilty don’t confess and usually go to great lengths to hide their guilt.

      In relationships, often the guilty party not only denies their guilt and refuses to take responsibiilty, but turns it back on the other party! For example, you get the person committing adultery accusing the person with the photographs from a PI of violating his or her privacy.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 0

    • Andthatswhyyouresingle Says:

      When someone snoops around, it’s because they don’t trust their partner

      I don’t know if it’s always a case of not trusting your partner. You can trust that someone won’t cheat, but question their level of commitment. Often times that paranoia we feel is really just insecurity and guilt. I believe HE believes he’s super excited about moving in together. But his actions say otherwise.

      Nowhere did I say that this guy doesn’t care for this woman. I simply stated that he wants to slow things down because he’s confused about the relationship. He’s obviously conflicted. The snooping was just an excuse to find something tangible he can use to justify questioning her commitment rather than just saying, “I don’t feel you’re 100% on board with this.”

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 2

      • nathan Says:

        Neither of your points really demonstrate anything different from my comment about lack of trust. Although maybe the wording of the sentence you’ve pulled out could have been clearer.

        If you don’t feel “100% on board” with, for example, moving in with someone, you are demonstrating a lack of trust. Perhaps I should clarify though that the trust issue might be with yourself. You might not trust yourself, but instead do something to question your partner’s commitment instead.

        In terms of DJoe’s comments, you’re right that people go to great lengths to hide the truth from others. I have been through such hiding by a partner myself, so I’m aware of the “finding evidence” impulse behind snooping. I think that sentence I originally wrote could be re-written to say “When someone snoops around, it’s because they don’t trust the relationship as it is.” Now, it might be very valid not to trust the relationship as it is, as in the case of being with someone trying to hide adultery.

        But I don’t think people choose to snoop on their partners and also have total trust in the relationship. The two seem mutually exclusive to me.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

        • Divorced Joe Says:

          I know moxie doesn’t want mutual admiration comments, but I think your rewrite is very perceptive.

          Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

  15. Trouble Says:

    I think that people snoop when they’re feeling insecure about the relationship. Whether that insecurity is coming from snooper’s own feelings of inadequacy, or whether they’re picking up on something non-verbally that suggests there’s a problem, is probably a matter for argument/discussion, though there is no clear answer. My ex left his “adult friend finder” profile up on the computer. Prior to that, I never snooped. After that, I snooped fairly regularly until we divorced.

    In general, I’m not a fan of snooping without cause. However, once you’ve snooped…it’s like Pandora’s Box. Putting it all back in the box is easier said than done.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 0

  16. Paula Says:

    People go on and on about the snooping, and it’s true there have been a number of snooping OPs lately. But once they have snooped, what is there to say about it? Those who snoop and don’t find anything, and those who don’t snoop, aren’t writing in to Moxie. And once the snooping has taken place, as I said earlier, 50 lashes with a wet noodle or a Moxie dressdown don’t really change anything: either they’ve learned their lesson and will never snoop again, or they believe the snooping was justified by what they found.

    Those of us addressing the situation after the snooping has taken place aren’t necessarily condoning it, but recognizing that you can’t unring that bell — you have to address the situation based upon what facts you’ve acquired. Some of the information has been ambiguous enough that having uninvolved people give them a reality check may even help keep the situation from escalating further and bringing about the demise of the relationship.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

  17. Devon Brown Says:

    Leaving the rest of the article and letter alone for a minute, I wanted to tackle the “no-nonsense” portion… Moxie says she has never heard of a man being described as no-nonsense… But to me, when someone says no-nonsense, I think of the Clint Eastwood type in the movies, typically described as a no-nonsense straight shooter. As such, the term might have a masculine feel to it, but I don’t know that it has to. I think both men and women get described as no-nonsense.

    But I do agree that no man would justify his opinion with a warning label. And neither should any woman. Your opinions are what give you a reputation of being no-nonsense, etc. And a reputation is what others give to you. You can’t give yourself a reputation.

    Maybe not the juiciest part of the column, but one on which I felt a need to comment.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  18. joe-f Says:

    I think the key question the OP is asking is whether texting the exes, longing for them is normal behavior. I would be very worried if I were you. In fact, I would take a step back and delay moving-in so I could get to know her better and whether or not I want to take the relationship to the next level.

    The girls you want to commit to are like Trouble. She keeps her focus on her man despite the presence of hotter men and she avoids creating situations that would damage her relationship. In contrast, there are girls with husbands and boyfriends who messes around with other guys especially their exes. Trust me, you don’t want to commit to these girls. You are not going to change her and you are just asking for the trouble of heartbreak and a divorce, if you marry her.

    As for snooping, only you know whether it is insecurity, careless accident or mistrust that cause you to look. However, that doesn’t take away from the issue that texting your exes longing for them is a serious sign of trouble.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 0

  19. DrivingMeNutes Says:

    Aptly titled.

    I for one am enjoying these “snooping” posts. I’m going to go as far as to condone sbooping for the purpose of this blog. We’re really getting insights into people. This is consistent with my views on human nature – that the face people present to the public, to their partners, to their friends, to their family- always conceals much more complicated stuff. Things are never what they seem – and it’s usually better not to know the “true” truth. Even the OP writing anonymoulsy to a blog is saying how “excited” he is to move in with his girlfriend and how he couldn’t be more thrilled. I’m sure he’s saying that to her and to all his friends too. And she also. Yet, all you have to do is scratch the surface a little bit and all this dust flies off. My opinion is this is all pretty common stuff. It, along with far more interesting things, are going on all the time in even the most seemingly happy couples. The illusion of a relationship where everything is open and out on the table is just that. An illusion. People who don’t “snoop” and/or believe everything people tell them just never know the bad stuff. Ignorance is bliss.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

    • Trouble Says:

      I snooped precisely once in my boyfriend’s texts. I found two really incriminating texts, one of which was about coming over to some girls’ house, and the other was about meeting up for dinner and “whatever after.”

      I felt sick inside. He is so great, and yet, once again I was being cheated on.

      I looked at his texts again later that night and realized that one was directed to his cousin. The one he usually stays with when he visits his hometown. The other one? Sent during Christmas break, 2007, before we ever became exclusive. He doesn’t text alot (I mean, like maybe 50 times in the life of his phone), and never bothered to clean them out of his inbox.

      So, basically, I snooped, got all upset, and found nothing. That’s because there wasn’t anything to find.

      And, I suspect that 99% of the time, when people do that, they don’t send an e-mail to Moxie, because they don’t find much at all. Even if my guy snooped in my facebook (which is the only place I keep up with anyone I’ve ever had even a remotely romantic tie to), he wouldn’t find much. I don’t have that much to hide, and it would be fairly clear that even if a guy has flirted with me, I don’t really reciprocate in an inappropriate way (like saying I sexually desire him). I can be a heartless flirt but because I’ve been cheated on, I’m fairly scrupulous about not giving a guy who wants to sleep with me much hope.

      So yes, there are happy couples where there are things happening under the surface. But, there are also plenty of average couples where nothing at all untoward is going on. I’m in one.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

      • DrivingMeNutes Says:

        “So, basically, I snooped, got all upset, and found nothing. That’s because there wasn’t anything to find. ”

        What did he say when you told him you snooped?

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

        • Trouble Says:

          I never told him, because I was totally embarrassed. I think if I had told him, in light of the issues with my marriage (my ex cheating repeatedly), he’d have understood, but he’d have been disappointed in me. Even more, I was disappointed in myself, because I was taking an insecurity from a different relationship and carrying it forward into a relationship with a totally different person. I thought I had come farther, but clearly, I hadn’t.

          That was a long time ago. I haven’t ever questioned his loyalty since.

          Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

          • DrivingMeNutes Says:

            “I never told him, because I was totally embarrassed.”

            You do see how this proves my point, right? Don’t you think he’s done embarrassing things too that he hasn’t shared with you? I don’t think all people “cheat” on their partners. That’s a strawman. I just think this “honesty is everything” is crap. It gets people a lot of “thumbs up” on this blog but that’s about it.

            Relationships are about diplomacy, not honesty.

            Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

            • Trouble Says:

              Relationships aren’t about diplomacy. They’re about trust.

              Of course, I don’t think honesty is everything. If he’d ever cheated on me, and deeply regretted it, and never done it again, I wouldn’t want to know. It would hurt me for no reason. He isn’t the kind of person who acts impulsively, though, so I find it unlikely. But, say he did. I think that people are allowed to make mistakes, regret them, atone for them, and move on. I don’t think that everything needs to be shared.

              I didn’t divorce my ex because he cheated once. People make mistakes. I divorced him because his infidelity was a trend that kept repeating itself, and it was coupled with a pattern of lying about financial issues, being financially and professionally irresponsible to the detriment of our relationship and our kids, and verbally mistreating me.

              I’m a pragmatist about a lot of things. I’ve come close to cheating—once—so I know how easy it can be. I could forgive a single act of stupidity. I can’t forgive a way of life that is based on lying and a sense of entitlement.

              Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

              • DrivingMeNutes Says:

                Trust is an essential component of diplomacy. As is honesty often. You were holding your relationship out as an exception to the rule that behind the best relationship is “bad stuff” because your boyfriend hasn’t cheated. So, in your case the “bad stuff” is coming from you – your snooping and lack of trust. Your boyfriend’s trust in you is arguably misplaced because its based on his ignorance of what you did. Do I think snooping is a capital crime? No. Some might say texting ex boyfriends and cheating isn’t so bad either. I agree that you should never tell your boyfriend about this mistake. But how can you deny you’re engaged in diplomacy, ie manipulation?

                Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  20. Selena Says:

    What I’m more curious about is why these people who snoop and find something are writing to Moxie instead of confronting their partners. They seem to want to be told whatever they found is “not that bad”, or “normal” in some way, so they can hang on to the relationship, pretending to their partner they don’t know what they know. Are they insecure? Probably. And they have a right to be given what their partner is doing.

    No, it is not “normal” or *okay* for a woman in a committed relationship to text her ex’s about her sexual longing for them. There is a big difference between private fantasy and subtly issuing an invitation. The OP has two choices: he can either decide he isn’t bothered by what his gf texts old boyfriends, or he can confront her about them. If he’s afraid to confront her, THAT’S the big thing to take a look at.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  21. Andthatswhyyouresingle Says:

    Somethingelse to note…..

    The OP never states when the text messages were sent. Like trouble says above, phones can store text messages for quite sometime. If someone were to go through my phone, they’d find conversations I had as far back as a year ago.

    More to this story folks. You can count on it.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

    • Selena Says:

      If the OP confronts his gf about the texts, then it would come out whether they were recent or before the two were dating.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  22. Andthatswhyyouresingle Says:

    The texts would have a time stamp. He wouldn’t have to ask her when they were sent. Hedhave known at the time he wrote the letter.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  23. Andthatswhyyouresingle Says:

    Also. He never says she was exchanging texts messages * with* her exes. Only that she was talking about longing for them sexually. She could have been texting with a girlfriend.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  24. Selena Says:

    Okay, if they were date stamped then he would know they were written recently, no? Why would he write you if they were written over a year ago?

    Bit of stretch to say the texts were written to a girlfriend, but even if they were, if I were him I’d want a convo about why she was sexually longing for her ex-boyfriends whilst planning to move in with me.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  25. Andthatswhyyouresingle Says:

    Why would he write you if they were written over a year ago?

    For the same reason he wrote in…he’s insecure.

    Bit of stretch to say the texts were written to a girlfriend,

    No more of a stretch than some of the conclusions jumped to in these comments. I’d say the lack and omission of details makes his story more suspect. That and the fact that, you know, he snooped on her.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

    • Selena Says:

      Well, I don’t text, but it doesn’t seem very likely to me that a woman would say something to her girlfriend like, “I care for Bob very much, but I miss having sex with Bill. And Tom.” By TEXT. Reminising after a few shots maybe, but not by text.

      Also, why wouldn’t he be insecure after reading texts his gf (of a YEAR) longs for sex with her ex’s? I’m a pretty secure person, but something like that would certainly give me pause. Ofcourse if it was before we met, it would be totally irrelevent.

      Mox, you really seem to have a major issue with snooping. I see it as a “lesser crime” and agree with many of the commenters above, most people don’t do it unless they know something is amiss and feel their partner isn’t being straight with them. The people who snoop for the hell of it , never finding anything incriminating, are not the folks writing in.

      If you hate “snoopers” why do you bother printing their letters? You seem to get hung up on that aspect every time, while the rest of us give opinions/advice on what the snooper actually FOUND.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

      • Trouble Says:

        I’m actually kind of glad that Moxie posts these letters from time to time. She posted one right after I ended up snooping my boyfriend’s phone, and I think that she said something along the lines of…If there is a problem, deal with it. But, at some point, you’ve got to trust the person you’re with. Otherwise, why are you with them?

        For me, at least, it was exactly what I needed to hear to help me move forward emotionally.

        A lot of us have baggage. We’ve been through terrible things. Listen, finding out that your spouse of multiple years, the father of your two children, is soliciting sex online is a horrible thing. Devastating. I can’t even put into words how much that discovery exploded my world. And then we worked to fix things, and he did it again. And then again.

        So, needless to say, trust is a huge issue for me. It’s very difficult for me to trust people. I really struggle with trusting my guy’s love for me, even though in every way, he’s proven himself to me. He is the most solid, kind, ethical person I have ever known, but I will always have that injury there from what happened before.

        However, there is little point to me trying to establish a relationship with my guy if I can’t learn to trust him. Trust is at the center of everything.

        And some of us who snoop because of our old injuries need to be reminded that snooping is not a replacement for having the conversations about the things that scare us. We get scared, we snoop, we find something, we use it as an excuse to keep on mistrusting people. At some point, we have to learn to get past it. Not every man is a cheater. Snooping isn’t safety…it’s undermining the basic and essential trust between two people.

        So, like I’ve said above: I get it. I understand why people snoop. I’ve done it myself. But, I also understand that it’s not how I want to live, and it’s not a healthy behavior. It’s a way of passive-aggressively dealing with insecurities that are either coming from our histories, or our current relationships. Snooping is a cop-out for dealing with the stuff that is actually tougher (but more necessary)…dealing with our own baggage, or openly discussing the scary stuff in our relationship. People snoop, because they’re too cowardly to do what they really OUGHT to do…

        Again…I’m not really judging here. I have been there, done that. But…it is not going to accomplish anything good.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

        • Selena Says:

          I don’t see anyone suggesting snooping as a substitute for honest communication. As I wrote above, I’m most curious why people are writing here, instead of confronting their partners on the questionable information they found. Now matter how they came by it, they now have the information required to discuss the direction of the relationship.

          Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

        • Angeline Says:

          I too had a long marriage exploded open by a revelation of infidelity. As you say, snooping doesn’t replace honest ccommunication. But as Divorced Joe said above, it doesn’t always arise out ofbeing too cowardly to initiate such discussions, either. I knew we were having problems, and tried all kinds of things. Tried to talk, tried to get us into counseling, tried to examine my behavior to see what I was doing to contribute to the problems. Stonewalled at every turn. Then when trying to fix an insurance snafu for our college aged child, discovered a whole other residence. Snoop? I call the subsequent research self preservation.

          Now I have the same issues Trouble mentions letting go of distrust and fear, as does my boyfriend. We decided to be as honest and upfront about airing those fears when they come up, and not get defensive or huffy about the appearance of being doubted, but to use each chance as proof to each other that we are honorable people. We’re doing pretty well with that, but also have no illusions that it will probably rear up and smite us again.

          Snooping isn’t always a sign of an insecure, unstable person. Sometimes circumstance knocks you in the head and says, ‘Hey, dumbass, with your head in the sand. You needa look at this.’

          Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

          • Selena Says:

            Snooping isn’t always a sign of an insecure, unstable person. Sometimes circumstance knocks you in the head and says, ‘Hey, dumbass, with your head in the sand. You needa look at this.’’

            Yep. I had that experience a decade ago with a partner as well. ;)

            Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

          • Trouble Says:

            I too had a long marriage exploded open by a revelation of infidelity. As you say, snooping doesn’t replace honest ccommunication. But as Divorced Joe said above, it doesn’t always arise out ofbeing too cowardly to initiate such discussions, either. I knew we were having problems, and tried all kinds of things. Tried to talk, tried to get us into counseling, tried to examine my behavior to see what I was doing to contribute to the problems. Stonewalled at every turn. Then when trying to fix an insurance snafu for our college aged child, discovered a whole other residence. Snoop? I call the subsequent research self preservation.

            There is a difference between justified snooping and unjustified snooping. You find a profile on an adult sexual site open on your computer to your husband’s profile? Snooping is justified. You find information about a second residence unbeknownst to you? Snooping is justified. Your spouse is disappearing at all hours of the night or is unavailable for long periods of time without reason? Snooping may be justified.

            But there is also unjustified snooping, the kind you do because of your own personal insecurities, because you’re carrying a lot of baggage around and because you have trust issues. That’s the kind of snooping that happens when you have no reason, whatsoever, to distrust a person, but because of your personal hangups, you do it anyway.

            If there is a problem in the marriage, deal with it. Confront it openly. If you have confronted them, and you still suspect the person of lying, hire a detective if that’s what you need to do to protect yourself. But, that’s not what I was talking about. I was talking about snooping for no reason, without any evidence at all of wrongdoing. Snooping for no reason (and I think that’s what happened in the OP) is a bad, unhealthy practice that undermines the foundation of your relationship and betrays your partner’s trust in you. That’s no way to live.

            Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  26. Mike Says:

    “I found 2 of them that she has been pretty open and saying that she still longs for them sexually. ”
    Hey dude, why are you still in a relationship with this woman?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  27. Andthatswhyyouresingle Says:

    I’ve sent the OP two emails from two different addresses requesting clarification on when his GF sent these texts and to whom. Messages were sent two days ago. I have not received a response yet but will post response should I receive it.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  28. breebree Says:

    I agree with this response Moxie. This guy was looking for trouble and found it.
    He wanted to check this woman out to see if everything was perfect before he made that move and as soon as he found something awry he has all these apprehensions and is having a change of heart.
    People do this all the time….I do it too.
    He needs to man up and admit he looked through her phone and just ask her straight up what the deal is with the other guy.
    At the end of the day though what it will boil down to is does he truly trust her enough to make this move or not.
    Reality is these text could have been found after the fact….ie after he moved in with her and had lived with her for a few months….then what…
    Some major decisions need to be made on this one.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

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