Snippets of noise distract me from my book.
“What are THOOOOOSE?”, a drunken Dominican dude shrieks. Joel giggles, curled up in the fetal position, his back to me in bed. It’s almost 3am and I’m only reading at this point because I’m hoping he will notice me rustling pages behind him and turn around to kiss my face. I want to discuss the documentary we watched earlier, and I want to ask him what we should get his mom for her bday. I want to lie with my head on his chest and fantasize together about our next trip away…but instead, he obsessively looks at his phone. I get angry/sad and in a mood, and roll over to go to sleep.
Snapchat is ruining my relationship.
I used to have it. I was living in LA, sunning myself by a pool during the day and ‘rubbing shoulders’ with A-listers at night. My snapchat was primitive compared to today’s version, and my feed was annoying. Just as annoying (or maybe less-so) than the 150 other people on my feed. Scrolling through, I’d literally find zero entertainment. Only snaps of drunk acquaintances at concerts & clubs, and truly offensive selfies.
I was hoping I’d at least get some nice tit shots or nudes (female, thanks). Isn’t that the whole premise of Snapchat due to it’s instant delete policy? Nevertheless, I never got any. I deleted it soon after.
I’ve been waking up early. I glance at my phone in the mornings only after I’ve kissed & cuddled my beautiful boyfriend. If he’s asleep, I’ll check my emails and peep my Instagram numbers – new followers, comments. And then I put it down, choosing to appreciate the quiet, and the fact that I get to wake up to Joel every morning.
Typically, not long after I wake, he opens his eyes. He shifts his gaze to find mine, smiles lovingly, kisses my forehead and cheeks and reaches for his phone. He brings my head into his armpit and together we scroll through Tumblr, Instagram, Twitter, Vine, back to Instagram, Facebook notifications…but not Snapchat.
“What’s with Snapchat?”, I inquire. “Why didn’t you look through that with me…?”
I know he looks at it. When he poops, I can hear the familiar voices of his friends out on the town. That he skips it in front of me, raises my suspicion.
“It’s just really boring.” He mumbles, still tired and definitely not in the mood to get into this kind of tense conversation first thing on a Saturday.
I’m pissed. I’ve become unfamiliar with how it works since about a thousand updates have been implemented since deleting it those years ago. My mind goes into overdrive, and I recall an article I read stating that it’s a proven fact that most people’s motive for using Snapchat is to flirt and find romantic connections. I’m scared that I’m about to uncover a whole seedy underworld of naked girls and propositions.
When he opens it, he’s on one side of the app and he swipes twice to the left to get to the contact list.
“Wai, wait wait. What was that first page?”
He says it’s for when someone sends a direct snap. (Direct snap?) I ask him to go back to it. He obliges. I try to click on ‘SexySammy’. A little speech bubble shows up.
“What’s this bubble??” I’m starting to get red in the face, and very hot.
He tells me it’s to reply to the snap, and to chat. TO CHAT?? I think about this for a minute.
Joel and I have been dating for almost 9 months. While I pride myself on being an easy-going, trusting and honest person, I can’t say that I’ve never looked over his shoulder while he looks on his social media. No doubt he is understanding, and on occasions will himself jump to see or ask who’s texting me incessantly.
But I never considered that all this time there’s a possibility he might be receiving personalized sexy pictures and having conversations with other women via Snapchat.
I’m so confused. My liberal-mindedness is in a whirl. If he’s looking at girls being sexy and it’s only online (on an app, whatever), isn’t that just the same as porn? To me, there’s no harm in that. He’s a guy. That’s what guys do. That’s what I do.
Is it a different story if he knows the girl, or used to fuck the girl? I mean, to me the difference is that there’s a possibility for him to actually meet with her (unlike with porn actresses), and for them to communicate.
Is communicating with other women, or flirting through snapchat considered cheating? I don’t know. It doesn’t make me feel good, I know that much. So we discuss it. Or rather, I discuss it.
“How many girls have sent you private pics of themselves or ‘talked’ to you through here???” Silence. “Who have you been chatting with that I don’t know about, and is this why you always hide it??”…“How would you feel if I was looking at pictures of hot guys or dick pics all day and chatting with these dudes, Joey?”
He calmly and gently says that he’s not chatting with anyone, and I’m being a little ridiculous. He says he’ll delete it if I want him to. That makes me feel like I’m controlling him, or like I’m his mother telling him he can’t play with his friends. So I tell him, I don’t want him to delete it under these circumstances, I want him to tell me what’s really up with it.
He looks me in the eye and says that truthfully, there is absolutely nothing going on on Snapchat and the only reason he looks at it or even has it at all, is because when he’s not with his boys being a hot mess (getting drunk, quoting rap lyrics, smoking weed), he’s looking at them doing it.
And yes, there’s the occasional babe making some kind of selfie-face or showing off in a bikini, but he asks me if I really think that gets him excited, and I know that it doesn’t and he’s right.
I digest all of this information for a minute and then I realize, it’s the Sliding Door of his life. Snapchat is the window to what his life was before me, or would be without me.
Skating, rowdy parties, guys smoking & playing video games, drunk selfies, titties… It’s like hearing about the party you couldn’t go to, the next day (but with pics).
This guy is in love with me. He’s never met anyone like me. And he’s proud to be devoted to me. He’s not going to give this thing we have up over a half-decent pair of pushed-up tits. And tits are everywhere. There’s no way to stop him looking, and God only knows I would never want him to. Tits are fucking fabulous.
The key to a successful relationship is trust (which also means trusting yourself & your instincts), and freedom (we are, after all, individuals). Social media is now a major part of our day-today lives. I definitely advise sitting down and having a sincere and mature discussion if it’s causing friction between yourself and your partner. It’s a lot better to address insecurity than to repress it.
And here’s the thing…If your BF or GF is going to cheat on you, harassing them about snapchat, stopping them from going out and talking to other women or men, or forcing them to commit is not going to change that.
The only thing that can stop someone from being unfaithful is by being a better candidate than anyone else out there, and they’re with you aren’t they? That’s the proof that he or she thinks you are (the best of the best). No amount of Snapchat trolling is going to change that. Accept and appreciate that fact, and let the dramatic shit GO.