I stupidly spent about four hours looking at pictures of my boyfriend with his ex on Facebook. At first I was just looking out of curiosity but then that curiosity became jealousy when I saw pictures of my guy looking like this incredibly happy man that I’ve never seen before. He and I have a relationship where we go to my apartment and watch movies, we spend every night in and we’re not very social at all. It’s comfortable and I like it.
This guy in these pictures with his ex, however, was out rock climbing, making funny faces at parties and having a fantastic time. He looked really happy, happier than I’ve ever seen him, actually. Now I worry that there is something about me that doesn’t allow him to have fun like this. Maybe I make him unhappy. Maybe he’s in this relationship out of convenience because this other girl left him. I’m having a lot of doubts now. Do you think there is something to this? Or am I just being a crazy girl?
Dear Home girl,
First, you’re not the only one who has had “crazy girl feelings” after looking at pictures on Facebook. So hopefully you’ll get lots of good advice from this discussion.
Second, I think there could be something to this, but you should be careful not to make assumptions based on how you’re viewing these pictures. People can look really happy doing things that they really hate — that is especially true when it comes to social media.
Commit yourself to never Facebook stalk his old relationships, which will only make you feel bad. In this case, since you can’t un-see what you saw, why don’t you try mixing up your routine with him a little bit? I don’t think you should try to mimic the dates that you saw on Facebook, but you can create your own memories and experiences with him.
You guys like watching things together? Instead of watching a movie in the house, why don’t you take him to a play this week? You saw from those pictures that he enjoys physical activity; take him to a spin class at a local gym, or walk down South Temple and take pictures of the leaves changing on the trees.
The main point to focus on is that he is with you and you are with him. Whatever your past relationships were like (fun, awful, casual, serious, whatever), they’re over, so focus on this one. Try new things, don’t compare it to other relationships and don’t let old Facebook pictures make you doubt it.
Readers: Do you compare your current relationship to past relationships? Do you think that is healthy? How would you help “Home girl” with her current predicament?
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Angela Trusty is a millennial writer who lives and writes about the Latter-day Saint experience. Twitter: askange_column