While we’re all guilty of checking out our crushes on social media to see what they’re up to, there’s a healthy line that needs to be drawn. It’s natural to want to find out more about someone you might get into a long-term relationship with, but there’s such a thing as taking your online stalking a little too far. It’s called freeclimbing—here are 5 signs you’re doing it (and probably need to stop).
You know where he went on vacation three years ago. Checking out a guy’s social media profile is fine, but if you’re scrolling so far back that you see photos from his 23-year-old sister’s high school graduation or his family trip to Barcelona three years ago, there’s a serious problem. You’re in the danger zone!
You’ve stalked him so much, you even found an archive of his old Friendster profile. You’ve obviously seen all of his active profiles—Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn… but you’re also somewhat of an internet sleuth, which means you managed to uncover an archived version of his old Friendster profile that he had in high school. Girl, stop yourself before it’s too late.
Everything in your internet search history has his name in it. Most people’s search history is full of random crap like whether raisins are poisonous to dogs (they are!) or how many calories are in McDonald’s fries (not enough to make them not worth eating). However, your long list of visited links all of this dude’s name in it, which means you’re way too obsessed. Sure, you’ve uncovered a lot about him, but at what cost to your sanity?
You worry you’ll have nothing to talk about on your date because you’ve already Googled everything about him. If you’ve spent hours online trying to get the scoop on your new dude, there’s always a danger of finding out so much about him that it’s awkward when you’re actually hanging out. After all, you can’t exactly tell him that you know he was an exchange student in France because you saw a pic of him with his host family from six years ago deep on his Facebook profile, can you? Take a step back and get to know him naturally.
You stare in horror as you realize you just liked his selfie… from 47 weeks ago. This is why it’s called “freeclimbing”—you’re out there without a safety harness, taking your chances and risking your life. When you accidentally click that little red heart or the thumbs up icon, you’ve well and truly screwed yourself over. There’s no coming back from this one.
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