Theory & Essay

Get Yo’ Hands Out Of My Email!

Some of y'all have this setup don't you?

Some of y’all have this setup don’t you?

People are crazy. Period. Aside from death and taxes, insanity on behalf of the human race is the only other certainty in life.

Yet for some reason or another, we, a people who are crazy, are also one of the most hopeful and optimistic species on the planet. We like to think that the one time out of then that somebody does something we want them to do trumps the nine times that they attempted to get us murdered by doing any of a number of things.

What does this have to do with the price of your NCAA bracket in North Carolina? Glad you asked.

Knowing that people are crazy, and crazy people really can’t be trusted, should we all assume that our significant others snoop through all of our stuff? And by stuff I mean cell phones, emails, etc. And by snooping I mean actively breaking into our emails and cell phones and basically committing felonies in order to a) gain information; or b) make sure they’re not being played?

I bring this up because the other day I was listening to the radio and heard some folks talking about how their current and/or exes have gone thru their FB messages and text messages and what not. It came up because somebody on the radio asked if folks actively deleted text messages. This started an all out war about whether or not you should delete texts or not. Conventional wisdom says it does look suspicious to do so…

…wait….but why?

How the hell would anybody KNOW that you’re doing this UNLESS they are breaking into your phone and thereby possibly giving you a reason to do so because they can’t be trusted? Of course, if you do have a need to delete anything then there’s a chance it probably shouldn’t be there in the first place. It’s a vicious cycle. I can’t stop eating because I’m fat, but I’m fat because I can’t stop eating.

But let’s kind of skip over what dirt you may or may not be doing. Stop it. Don’t do dirt. Now you can say you resisted.


The last few lines came from Tyler Perry’s Temptation. Don’t see this movie. Unless you already have. If you have, then I feel sorry for your mother.

I remember having a convo with a friend of mine a few weeks ago and she said to me, straight up, “P, if you have a phone, I think it’s a pretty safe bet that your girl has gone through it.” In the next breath though, she did tell me that she’s never done such a thing which of course leads me to one, and only one conclusion: you can never believe anything a woman says.

I keeed. I keeeed. Kinda.

But all of these folks were calling in, both men and women, saying how their phones and profiles were constantly being surveilled by their folks. What caught me most off guard is that none of them sounded surprised by it or even upset. A ninja like myself? I’m not ’bout that life. I don’t believe in sharing passwords (though I’ve learned that if you password protect anything, your SO is going to find out that code by paying attention at all times). I remember once getting into a discussion about my passwords.

“Yeah, I ain’t giving up the passwords.”

“Do you have something to hide?”

“No. I just don’t think that you need them.”

“Ewww. I don’t even want them but I feel some kind of way that you are telling me that I can’t have them.”

“Tough titty. Make me a sandwich.”

It went something like that. But probably didn’t end like that. The point was clear. I think people you are dating do tend to feel a certain entitlement to your private life. I know of couples who are only dating where they give up all of their passwords and important information. Folks who have been dating for 6 months handing over married life info in case of emergencies. Naw, my ninja. In case of emergency, call my momma. I don’t expect somebody I’m only dating to be the emergency contact at work or anything. But apparently some folks operate like that so I suppose handing over the passwords makes sense.

Perhaps I’m just paranoid, but you know how when you really need that email or something inside your email and you can’t access a computer…I will pop a molly and sweat around Rick Ross before I’d think to call my girlfriend up and give her access to my email. That might sound ridiculous, but if I’m to assume that ninjas are going to go through my stuff anyway, then why HAND over permission to do so.

Plus it opens the door. (No judgement btw for some of you all who are completely okay with this). You give them the password. They give you what you need. You change your password. They notice. Well they can’t just say it but folks ALWAYS tell on themself and get crafty with telling you what they’ve been doing. Plus, I don’t feel like having to explain something thats in my email who doesn’t understand context or what have you.

But back to the lecture at hand, should you just expect that your significant other is going to dig through your stuff, effectively hack into your accounts?

Is this just where we are? I’m curious.

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Panama Jackson

Panama Jackson is pretty fly (and gorgeous) for a light guy. He used to ship his frito to Tito in the District, but shipping prices increased so he moved there to save money. He refuses to eat cocaine chicken. When he's not saving humanity with his words or making music with his mouth, you can find him at your mama's mama's house drinking her fine liquors. Most importantly, he believes the children are our future. You can hit him on his hitter at

  • *looks through this post to decipher Panama’s passwords as the clues are prolly hidden in here*

  • If something happens to me my bestie has strict instructions to destroy anything my mom doesn’t need to see. I’m not about to give my passwords up to anyone though. Miss me with that snooping mess too.
    I believ you dont ask questions if you’re afraid of the possible answers and you don’t go looking/snooping unless you’re ready to find something.

    • my bestest and i have that SAME agreement. lol.

    • “when it’s finished, enter your name” – Bruce Wayne

    • Bishop

      Ppl always say if u go looking for something u will find something and I think that’s BS if I look and there’s is something there then we need to address it but if I look and there’s nothing there we good its that simple.. I think the ones who say that shit are the ones who be doing shit they don’t have any business doing..

  • AfroPetite

    As a woman I don’t expect my SO to snoop through my things for dirt. For what? Wutchu mean you don’t trust me? Why da fugg you here?

    I have a friend girl who knows the PW to her boyfriends phone, Bank account, Netflix, email, everything. It works for them I guess but should they ever split he’d have to switch up all his shid because she has unlimited access to his life. The crazy thing, is that they’re basically around each other 24/7 so he’d be hard pressed to hide anything from her anyway.

    • LMNOP

      That can be useful though. You can ask the other person to check something or do something that involves logging into their account. I’ve known my mother’s PIN number most of my life, and I know her 2 or 3 passwords that she uses for pretty much everything. She doesn’t know mine though.

      • It is useful. Just not for my life. LOL. If i lose something, its just gone. I’m okay with that.

  • iamnotakata

    I would expect that if my account permissions were private and for my eyes only pre you. Then they shall remain the same when you are allowed into my space. So no this is not an expectation one should have when dealing with me.

  • LOL at this post.

    i HAVEN’T gone through his phone though! lolol. nah but really, i think snooping is a slippery slope. i’ve learned from experience that if i’m at the point where i (speaking only for me here, folks) feel the need to go through his phone or email or any password protected anything, then there’s an 92% chance that there will definitely be something for me to find there that is without-a-shadow-of-a-doubt incriminating, and at that point we should just break up. trust is a fragile thing and like glass, nearly impossible to repair once it is shattered.

    i have also been on the other end of snooping where a boyfriend (more than one actually) has gone AWL up and through diaries, email, hard drives, computer files, put keystroke decoders on my laptop, etc. IT IS NOT FUN. so no, i will never subject someone to that. i am reasonable enough that if i suspect something is going on, it probably is, because i don’t suspect unless given real reason to think so, not personal insecurities, which is what said ex boyfriends were operating under.

    i do think it is more common than men like to believe, though. i will give you fellas a helpful tip though: usually, the more open you are with a woman, the less likely she is to snoop or even feel the need to snoop. not saying just had over your password, but be extra open and eight out of ten she’ll not even sweat your passwords. then after a while, all the suspicion is eliminated, even after you’ve stopped over-sharing.

    • “i will give you fellas a helpful tip though: usually, the more open you are with a woman, the less likely she is to snoop or even feel the need to snoop. not saying just had over your password, but be extra open and eight out of ten she’ll not even sweat your passwords. then after a while, all the suspicion is eliminated, even after you’ve stopped over-sharing.”

      You mademoiselle are a wise woman indeed. When you set the tone the right way from the beginning you usually don’t have to fear the invasive actions of an insecure/paranoid lover.

      • Caballeroso

        I would’ve agreed with you completely about setting the tone and being open early-on to prevent later doubt ifhad I not dated Carolyn. I’ve always been open about nearly everything from day one with those that I chose to be with which includes a SO. My former SO Carolyn and I were out walking one night and I mentioned that my new cellphone didn’t come with an owner’s manual. She casually let it slip that she’d already looked online to see how it works.

    • Negro Libre

      I do not cheat when I’m in a relationship, but if I did find my girl trying to hack into my phone, I probably would cheat on her and eventually leave her. And I feel any guy who actually isn’t cheating and finds his girl in that situation will eventually act in the same way.

      • well that’s not nice.

        you’d cheat just because she went through your phone? why not try reassurance so she’ll stop?

        • Negro Libre

          I’m just saying it’s inevitable. I get into relationships, primarily because of trust not because of attraction. If I didn’t trust a woman, I wouldn’t be in a relationship with her, I’d just smash and be her friend if she was down for it. If trust is our foundation for being together, and I lose that, eventually, everything else will fall apart, and the first thing that will fall apart are the restrictions I put on myself in terms of dealing with other women.

    • Openness doesn’t help. Trust me on this one. I’ll tell my wife what I’m doing, and she still thinks I’m up to something. Heck, she thinks “helping my elderly aunt in The Bronx” is code for something. Other that, ya know, helping my elderly aunt in The Bronx, whom she’s met on countless occasions. :)

      Still, if someone has trust issues, you could have a drone with a spy cam follow you at all times, even into the bathroom, and they still won’t believe you.

  • My dad (as well as my siblings and I) all have the password to my mom’s email, since she is just now really able to do it on her own (I set up that email address for her circa 1996. She’s been busy. Or something) That said, she doesn’t have any of my dad’s. It has less to do with snooping and more to do with her accidentally messing stuff up.

  • Liz

    I would expect my husband to give me his passwords, and I’d give him mine assuming he was tech savvy enough to not leave me open to being hacked. It freaks me out to say that LOL. I REALLY want to be about that life though. I can’t yet imagine being in that space, but it is my preferred marriage dynamic. Either way, my husband would know I truly love him if I give up my passwords. That’s like my holy grail right there.

    Boyfriend? No passwords….unless I needed him to retrieve something for me. And even then, I’d have to think about if there is anybody else I trust more than him to go into my account for me lol.

    • Diamond JIm

      Well I guess we’d never make it. I’m not giving mine up to anyone. Even in a relationship there is a degree of expectation of privacy. Example: I have a friend who is going through some stuff and they confide in me confidentially. He/she should be confident that I’ll maintain that confidentiality.

      • Liz

        I just think if I’m willing to hand over my passwords to my best and most trusted friend (which I have done before btw), and that person would reasonably be my husband at the point when im married, then I take no issue with sharing passwords (assuming he knows how to be responsible with them). Would I want him to issue me a list of all his passwords once we’re married? No. i can barely remember my own passwords, i don’t need another set to remember lol. but it should be understood that all passwords should be made available upon request lol.

    • Dignan

      I’m with Diamond Jim on this one. The furthest I’ll go is the following:

      “My passwords are in a protected file on my computer. I’ll show you where that file is located, and how to get into it. If something happens to me and I die, or if I’m hospitalized, you’ll then have access to my bank account, investment account, etc, with all the passwords.

      But so long as I’m here and as long as I’m healthy, don’t you dare try to access that file. In fact, don’t even use my computer unless I’m here in the house. And I won’t use yours either.”

      • Dignan

        And by the way, just for the record, my passwords are NOT in a file on my computer. Don’t hack me, dude!

        • camilleblu

          “Don’t hack me, dude!”

          lol…why did that make me think of that florida student that got tased?? – “don’t tase me bro”

  • I remember when a soldier died in Iraq and his parents sued Yahoo to get access to his account. On that note, I need to contact all the emails and social media t tell them to delete my isht. (BTW – that soldier story came out back in the MySpace days. I actually had it in my profile for MySpace to delete my account if I died)

    • nillalatte

      FB has just now created a policy for the deceased. One of my mother’s friends died last year and I just happened to see his FB account pop up on that suggested friends thing. I went to his page and one of his friends had left a message about 2 months prior saying “Hey, how are you doing? Haven’t heard from you in a while.” Ummm… yeah, homie and unless you are in the spirit world, you ain’t gonna hear from him! I wrote my mom a note that she may want to contact FB and let them know he’s dead! smdh

      • Dignan

        My best friend has been dead for over a year, and people *still* go in from time to time and leave messages on his Facebook page.

        It’s just part of our grieving, I guess. He was loved by more people than anyone I’ve ever known.

        • Yeah. My brother’s page gets hit up with messages every so often as well.

  • nillalatte

    Humm… I say for me… pw’s… humm… interesting as I think about this one. Y’all gon trip, but dats okay. My ex-husband… hell, naw. I never gave him a pw. Hell, I got to where he didn’t even get a key to f’n mailbox. Don’t ask.

    But, my most recent whatever, yeah, I gave him a lot of info and he gave me a lot in return, like SS#, DL#, etc. He had temporary guardianship of my kids when I traveled. He left his computer at my house for me to work on for like a month and there was a LOT of personal info on there. Did I go snooping? Hell naw. Why? Well why would I? There are a lot of ways to break this down, but two come to mind: financial and emotional. Getting past the emotion takes less time than someone screwing you financially.

    He and I actually talked about this once and I was using someone as an example saying how she went through her man’s phone and I said, “if you go looking for it, you gonna find it basically ’cause you already know it.” His reply, “If you are having to look for something, then you are in the wrong relationship.” Touche’ mofo, touche’.

    • AfroPetite

      “If you are having to look for something, then you are in the wrong relationship.” Touche’ mofo, touche’.”

      *nods head*

      • +1

      • Asiyah


    • Sweet GA Brown

      True. I dont go looking for anything. If there is something to be found out, it will surely come to light in due time. I like to think my time is better spent doing something else besides trying to conduct a continued investigation into their loyalty to me and our relationship.

  • First off: “I will pop a molly and sweat around Rick Ross” kilt me dead. I don’t think I ever would’ve been able to stop myself from laughing if I ever heard a woman start a sentence like that lol.

    “should you just expect that your significant other is going to dig through your stuff, effectively hack into your accounts?”

    Hmmm. I asked this same question after my last relationship. I think you shouldn’t “expect it” per se, but you shouldn’t be surprised if you find out this is the case though. At least not for ppl around my age. Folks tend to have a harder time fully trusting each other to have certain levels of privacy. Someone’s ego and its insecurities is always gonna make a relatively persuasive argument for “If he/she doesn’t have nothing to hide, what’s the big deal”. No judgment here either, but I wonder if it’s this way as a sign of the times generationally or is it because technology made this level of snooping and privacy invasion possible?

    I guess an even better question is should you accept it or is it always unacceptable? #thingsthatmakeyougohmmm

    • AfroPetite

      Why do people feel entitled to information on the strength that “if they don’t have anything to hide then why trip?”

      I really dislike my generation for having this mentality and trying to force it on others. If I can’t claim you on my taxes you don’t get immediate access to anything, point blank.

      • Charcoal Burnt Brother Lover

        Even if I claim you on my taxes, and we even carry each other’s blood in little thing thangs like Angelina Jolie and her ex husband you still are not entitled, or rather, should not have any expectations of me giving you access to my passwords. I’ll give it to you on my own accord and not because I’m expected to.

        • Asiyah

          I agree with this.

          Hey ya Mami!

          • Charcoal Burnt Brother Lover

            HeYyy girlie!! :)

      • naturalista88

        “If I can’t claim you on my taxes you don’t get immediate access to anything, point blank.” LMAOOO, so damn true.

        • GirlSixx


          Luvv This!!!!

          And even then there are certain passwords/codes they would be privy to.

    • Camilleblu

      But the other thing is what P said about context….you go snooping and come up on some old shyt, or some shyt that you just don’t know about – yet – b/c it ain’t time for you to know…then you all salty but its your d@mn fault for snooping anyway….oh you mad?? #idontgiveashyt

      • I had this happen to me YEARS ago. My monitor on my computer broke, and I checked my email on my wife’s computer before I went off to find a new monitor. Stupidly, I forgot to log off my email on her computer. When I come back from looking for a monitor, she’s in our bedroom on the phone crying to one of my friends.

        Turns out she snooped through some emails from before we got married and read that I had a falling out with this one woman. As a result, she assumed that me and this woman had a serious relationship, and that she thought I had gone to cheat on her when the monitor broke. The truth was that she completely missed the context of the email, because it wasn’t even about my wife or even my issue with the woman in question. Still, since she felt the need to find something, ANYTHING, wrong, we ended up having this huge argument about something she didn’t know the whole story to. The ironic part is that after 2 hours, my wife mysteriously calmed down and said you’re right, and I don’t want to argue anymore. I was so pissed that we barely spoke for days. So you’re going to yell at me all this time, then stop, just cuz? LOL

        • camilleblu

          man..todd…listen…i went to ciaa a couple of years ago and hung out tough with one of my boys (jack) and his crew…all night and into the next day…all weekend…had a ball!! fast forward 2 weeks…i get a fear-of-god-inducing case of food poisoning…my boyfriend comes over to check on me and for some reason looks at my phone – which just happens to be open to my text messages…all he sees is jacks name and a couple of “i love you’s” thrown back and forth…and he loses his d@mn mind…who is jack? what the fugg are y’all doing texting that time of night? oh, y’all love each other?? blah, blah, blah…ok…on the surface, i get why he was upset…but the thing was…jack is a friendship that is 20 years deep..he is truly my friend – not an ex, not anyone that i messed around with…and i tell everyone that means something to me that i love them – man or woman – which he knew b/c he’d heard me say it plenty of times to another close male friend of mine….and he didn’t know him b/c he lives 600 miles away and he didn’t even know all of my female friends that live right here in the same city…wanted me to call jack right then and talk to him so that he could hear the “tone of the conversation”…ummm…#ninjasaywhat??!! i wouldn’t do it…he felt like i was hiding something, so i told him that he could do us both a favor and keep it moving…i wasn’t about to get caught up in having to “prove” my innocence every time he didn’t agree with or understand something that i did…and it really all could have been avoided if he had not acted so crazy with his initial reaction…what i didn’t even bother telling him was that part of the reason that i hung out with and talked to jack so much that weekend was that he was about to get married and was having some very serious reservations about it…he really needed someone kind of “out of the box” to talk to…

          • All I gotta say to your story is people be trippin’. I hope dude apologized after tht, especially knowing the context. That he would fli off of such an everyday phrase, noting the way you use it, means he is the one with the issue.

            • camilleblu

              eh…i broke up with him…ain’t nobody got time for that..and i knew he would never really get over it b/c i go back and forth to nc regularly, and i knew it would always be some shyt about jack…so…jack’s still around and the s/o isn’t…*yeezyshrug*

        • Asiyah

          “Stupidly, I forgot to log off my email on her computer.”

          Unfortunately, that’s where most men fail. I caught my ex in a few compromising situations that were no big deal, but showed he was lying about something, all because he forgot to log-out of his email or his FB account. And I know other men who were “caught” this way. He tried to say I was snooping, and I just reminded him that it isn’t snooping when HE LEFT THE WINDOW OF HIS CHAT OPEN ON MY COMPUTER! COME ON, SON! And it’s not like the conversation was a big deal or like I was jealous, but be smarter. You don’t want me to know? Log-out.

    • I dont think its just our generation….my parent’s generation was all about checking suit pockets and purses for numbers, receipts, matchbooks, etc….We’re just the technological snoops. *shrugs*

      I am finally in a relationship where theres no real trust issues. Her and I are best friends first and foremost; so when I need something out of my email, or if she needs me to check her account balance, we call each other. How in the heck can we build a solid relationship if we have to CONSTANTLY be worried about the other snooping? This is the first time I’ve taken the lock off my phone, left my laptop open, allll that. And she does the same. Its not even fronting or a facade, we just REALLY have no interest in snooping thru ish thats none of our business. Look at me, in a trusting grown up relationship!! *throws confetti*

      • camilleblu

        you go girl!

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