Ask Marzipan: Is It OK to Check My Girlfriend’s Email?

June 09, 2009

Dear Marzipan,

Help! I can’t stop reading my girlfriend’s email and text messages. I trust and love her, but I’ve been hurt before and I’m just so scared it’s going to happen again. I haven’t told her that I’ve been doing it and I feel really awful about it. Am I committing relationship suicide?

Dear friend,


I’m sorry. I don’t mean to be harsh, because BELIEVE ME I more than sympathize with your problem. I may have been a bit of an email/phone checker back in the day, and I may also have had a bit of a problem with feeling entirely secure and trusting of my previous partners. But the fact of the matter is:

  • Insecurity is not sexy. No matter how many times you’ve been hurt before, if you aren’t willing to put your heart on the line, your relationship is never going to reach a point where you can feel secure and loved. This is hard. But, I think you’ll find that it is benefits of being emotionally open and available far outweigh the cons.
  •  By constantly worrying about the how/why your relationship will come to a screeching halt and implode in on itself, you are almost guaranteeing it will happen. Nothing drives a relationship away like incessant questioning/“wondering”/generally living in fear and terror.
  • Even if you don’t think that your motives spawn from mistrust or violation of your partner’s privacy, your actions are saying the exact opposite. The good news is: it’s not too late.  While I’m not 100% advocating this, you have the option of not fessing up to your significant other as long as you stop reading their email and texts immediately. I can’t really reiterate how important that second part is. STOP. NOW. I do not care what you’ve done before, because every moment is a new moment to turn it all around.

The final thing that I have to say to you is really the most important: YOU ARE WORTH SO MUCH MORE THAN THIS. Be brave! Be confident! Believe the fact that you are amazing and wonderful and worthy of a loving and stable relationship. Don’t let yourself get bogged down behaving in a way that is unbecoming and then double-whammy having to feel guilty for having been sneaky and backhanded in the first place. Usually, all that I’ve gained from going down this road is an ulcer from feeling so bad about having done it in the first place. Trust me when I say that you are too busy and too phenomenal to be tied down with an ulcer. Have faith!