How Jealousy and Depression Led Me to Spy on My Husband

An unhappy woman leans against a tree, cryingThe matter of trust is always a burning issue, especially nowadays when technology has taken over the bigger part of our lives. With the development of social media, we forgot how to talk to each other, and replaced our real life communication with calls, chats, and videos. We think we have the company of friends and lovers, but when the Internet goes dark, we face the terrifying reality—our virtual worlds are just an excuse to avoid complete solitude.

One of the biggest problems we face while using the Internet is jealousy. It starts with simple comments, “likes,” and then progresses to messages and even calls. If there were a way to check your better half, would you do it? Does online chatting constitute cheating?

Many stories start with flowers and chocolate, mine was no different. I met my husband in college, where both of us were studying programming. It is not news that there are few girls in that field, and I was lucky to catch the best boy in our group.

Soon after graduation, we got married and moved to New York. Things were going pretty well except that we hardly saw each other. He joined an international company and was constantly away. Quite a common story, you might say, but it wasn’t just distance that set us apart—there was technology.

I could not stop thinking of what he was doing and with whom he was talking when he was not with me. One time I caught him chatting with another woman, and I was foolish enough to start spying on him. In reality, though, I had neither time nor money to hire a private detective to follow him to Japan, so I bought a spying pen, which indicated his GPS location and recorded his surroundings, but in practical terms, it was nothing but a waste of money.  I didn’t know how to make my husband carry it with him all the time; moreover, I couldn’t hear anything because of the wind. Eventually, the battery charge got so low that I had to ditch that idea.

Next, I took my friend’s advice to use a mobile spying app. It was quite a simple thing to use: I downloaded the file and installed it on his iPhone, then I could track his messages, calls, his GPS location. I became obsessed, lost sleep, could hardly work, and was even admitted to a hospital.

You probably want to know if he was actually cheating. There was a girl—his coworker—I saw them taking pictures together, which he deleted before coming home. I could see those pics through my spying app; I tracked his messages, and I knew how many times he called her, but I could not prove that they were involved in an affair.

Spending all my money on shrinks, I got lost completely. I couldn’t sleep and one of the shrinks I went to told me I had neurosis—symptoms of anxiety, depression, and obsessive behavior. He told me to visit another doctor who gave me antidepressants. It’s easy to become addicted to those pills, though, and they don’t really cure the real problem. I felt better, but I knew that I felt so only because of the drugs, so I stopped using them, and then it all changed into a nightmare.

There was a time when I couldn’t even work, and my mom had to take me to my parents’ house where I stayed for a whole week while my husband was in Indonesia. I knew one thing: I needed help, real help that surprisingly came from no one else but my husband. He got back and called my mother. He pestered me for information, as he couldn’t understand the reason for my behavior. When suddenly I cracked and told him everything, he just started crying. He confessed that there was a crush and that on one occasion he had almost taken it too far. Nevertheless, I was the reason he was interested in her. My depression led me to neglect self-care, and I had no interest in making love or spending romantic time together. He thought there was no more love left from me, and he was also stressed because he was under risk of getting fired. I pushed him off and abandoned him when he needed me most. I was so wrapped up with thoughts of jealousy, I thought only about myself, when the person I loved the most was devastated.

I relied on technology to reveal the truth, when all I had to do was to talk with him upfront.  Eventually, we figured out a way to stay together—he quit his job and found a new one in the city. Surprisingly, we needed no recovery therapy, our main medicine was honesty and love.

Although my story has a happy ending, I really think that love and technology do not match. Because it is true, as the author Frank Crane wrote, “You may be deceived if you trust too much, but you will live in torment if you don’t trust anyone.”

Paula Green is an IT professional who currently works as a writer for a college writing service.

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  • TallAddie

    TallAddie

    November 9th, 2014 at 10:20 AM

    I can relate to every single piece of your story.

    I too have been a spy on friends and boyfriends, and I have to say that it is so much more freeing to be able to live where I trust people than to live in that world where I am unable to trust anyone.

    I think that all of mine started by being hurt over and over again by people who meant a whole lot to me but I came to learn that I did not mean quite that much to them. Very hurtful path that took me a long time to realize hurtful truths about myself too. I am thankful that I have moved beyond that but still not so much that I still can’t see myself in this very story.

  • Donna

    Donna

    November 10th, 2014 at 3:44 AM

    For this to really take hold there has to be an awful lot of insecurity there to begin with. I am not being critical but I think that what we should do if we start to see this pattern in ourselves is to look inward for a moment and try to figure out if there is anything that we could be doing to contribute to this instead of immediately looking to the other person for answers.

  • cassie

    cassie

    November 10th, 2014 at 6:08 AM

    no one has touched the subject of how porn can desensitize, and how it can escalate… I have been with my porn addict husband for 10 years. has anyone let their partner take pics or videos of you nude?
    were you told they were just for him.. did he say he would keep them Safe! do not believe it. mine got posted and shared with friends… something done just for him.. something intimate turned into trash..
    no matter what you do or say he will still do what he thinks be needs for a thrill… I have decided the end of my marriage is inevitable… I’m leaving before we hate each other…. I never gave my consent for him to post or share my photos.. and that ladies is a felony

    good day!

  • Kerry

    Kerry

    November 10th, 2014 at 8:19 AM

    I can see how feeling this way could then lead you down a path that you may not even recognize yourself being in anymore. When you are feeling so terrible about yourself it becomes even easier to also think the worse about other people in our lives, even the ones whom we love and care about the most. It is not an easy thing for anyone to admit but I think that if I was depressed and unsure and about what was going on with me, then the instinct would also be there to worry about my relationships and to question the things that others were then telling me.

  • martin

    martin

    November 11th, 2014 at 3:46 AM

    There is that old saying that distance makes the heart grow fonder but I have found that it can also lead to a whole lot of suspicion in marriage or any relationship…

  • Steve

    Steve

    November 12th, 2014 at 4:52 AM

    Another thing I noticed is that the doctors are quick to prescribe antidepressants even though they know fully well that they only suppress the symptoms. Sometimes I think that they are licensed drug dealers.

  • Cal

    Cal

    November 13th, 2014 at 3:54 PM

    You know what this led to in my marriage?
    A divorce
    I couldn’t stand the fact that no matter what I did my ex never did seem to trust me and it was as if she was always blaming me because she did not feel good and was having a rough time.
    I tried, I seriously tried very hard t make her happy but nothing that I ever did was enough and even when I tried to surprise her with things she would always accuse me of doing something else.
    there was only so much of that that I could take, so I left.
    It just wasn’t the right relationship for either of us in the end.

  • Matilda

    Matilda

    November 16th, 2014 at 8:56 AM

    jealousy can make you do some crazy things, things that you may have never expected that you would ever do, and then you find yourself getting all worked up over what in hindsight will look insignificant but at the time feels like a real deal breaker.

  • Outcast

    Outcast

    December 7th, 2014 at 9:59 PM

    This story is one I can relate to all too well. Sadly my outcome was not so happy. It started after I returned from the Gulf war. I rather quickly spiraled into undiagnosed depression and ptsd. Instead of getting help I turned to my computer and fanasy role playing games (single player NOT online). But in spending all of my free time on games I neglected what truly mattered the most to me. We had gotten engaged prior to my spiral but I found a valentines day card in her car one day and started tape recording our apartment and phone, even waiting outside her work to see who she was talking to (I realllly went off the deep end). Needless to say that last phase lasted only a few short months before it became a self fulfilling prophecy (yes she really was seeing someone but I put her there). I eventually sought counseling but to this day struggle with ptsd and depression and can honestly say never did fully get over her. Now 20 some years later and after 18 months of being unemployed I finally found a new job (steep paycut and not in my chosen field) but think I finally found a therapist at the VA I might one day open up to and yes I have had many. I have a new partner now (15 years last month but will never marry, her issues not mine lol) but in our own twisted co-dependent fashion have already outlasted half of all marriages.
    And Donna, you clearly dont understand the mind set. Its not rational so saying we should behave or think rationally, well I sure wish I could have but good luck with that…

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