Disclaimer: The below is solely intended for informational purposes and in no way constitutes legal advice or specific recommendations.
It’s never a good feeling when you discover your boyfriend is still on a dating site. Your immediate thoughts may be that he is cheating or that he’s looking for a way out of the relationship.
Before you jump to any conclusions or accuse of him of being unfaithful, consider how you found out about his dating profile in the first place. Did someone tell you they found your boyfriend on a dating app? If so, think about whether this person is someone you trust, or if they are they the kind of person who enjoys causing trouble. A good friend will be looking after your best interests, but an acquaintance may not have the best intentions in mind, which may even be discernible by the manner in which they broke the “news” to you.
On the other hand, if you found his profile yourself, how did you find it? Did he leave his account open on his laptop by mistake? Did you run a background check on him and discover the profile? Or were you snooping around for it on his phone?
While there’s nothing wrong with doing a little research on your partner, actively looking through your boyfriend’s private devices could indicate that there are some underlying trust issues in your relationship. If you feel you can’t trust your significant other, you’ll probably want to find the root cause and address that first.
My Boyfriend Definitely Has an Active Dating Profile. Now What?
As with all relationships, communication is key here. It’s natural that you want to raise your concerns with your boyfriend, so here are a few tips to start the conversation:
The best way to have a meaningful, productive conversation with your boyfriend is to be honest. If you were using his computer and found an active Match.com profile open in his browser, tell him that. If you went digging through his phone’s app and browser history, be honest about that, too. Set the tone for honesty and you’ll have a better chance of having a respectful conversation.
Listen to his story.
Some people who use dating sites to find a romantic partner say they keep their profiles open for finding “friends.” Whether this is something you’re comfortable with or not is a topic of discussion between you and your partner.
Consider the stage of your relationship.
The early stages of a relationship are murky seas to navigate. You and your new sweetheart may have expectations that aren’t discussed or brought up until much later in the relationship. If you haven’t discussed monogamy, now is the time to express your interest in being in an exclusive relationship. Make your feelings, intentions and perspective clear to each other so that you both know what you consider acceptable and unacceptable behavior.
On the other hand, if you and your boyfriend have already agreed to be exclusive and he’s still on a dating site, it’s possible that you and he did not make your respective expectations clear enough. Revisit that conversation and talk about what kind of relationship you want to have. If your boyfriend doesn’t feel the same way as you, you may want to evaluate whether you two are truly compatible.
Avoid the “blame game.”
Regardless of whether you want to stay in the relationship or not, avoid conversations that lead to the “blame game.” The blame game is never productive and will only deteriorate into a disaster. If you want to stay in the relationship, you can start repairing it with productive talks that result in the two of you working towards a common vision or goal. If you’re ready to dump him, focus on what you need to do to have an amicable break up.
Ultimately, it’s often best to follow your own intuition. You’ll likely know in your gut if your boyfriend’s behavior warrants a breakup, or if it’s a catalyst for communication and, hopefully, a stronger relationship.