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Letters From Japan: 'He doesn’t have any pictures of us'

By Hilary Keyes

Savvy Tokyo's resident "Love in Japan" columnist, Hilary Keyes, answers anonymous questions from readers on everything from dating in Japan to women’s health issues. Got a question you’d like to ask Hilary? Email it to with the subject "Ask Hilary."

Hey Hilary,

I’ve been dating this Japanese guy for a month, and last night we stayed at a hotel together. He went to take a shower and left his phone, unlocked, on the bed. I don’t know why I did it, but I picked it up and clicked the home button. I went through his phone. He’s not cheating on me or anything, I checked his messages, but he had nothing personal at all on his phone. There weren’t even any photos of me, or of us together. It really hurt my feelings. He didn’t have anything about us on his phone — like, I don’t even matter to him. I put it down and tried to ignore it, but it’s still bothering me and I think he knows something’s up now. What do I do? – Feeling Hurt

Dear Feeling Hurt,

If anyone should be feeling hurt, it’s your boyfriend. You snooped on his phone when he obviously trusted you enough to a) not lock it, and b) leave it out in the open with you. You broke his trust by doing that and then gave yourself a complex in the process. That’s not something that a person in an honest, healthy relationship does.

This trend of snooping on your partner’s phone or checking their emails without their consent is toxic. While I can understand wanting to know if someone is cheating (especially if there are red flags about it), just looking through someone else’s property because you can isn’t healthy behavior. If you don’t want someone to judge you by what’s on your phone, then maybe you should leave their phone alone.

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© Savvy Tokyo

©2020 GPlusMedia Inc.

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Yeah, women get nosey when they start getting serious about a guy. I think it is rather positive that there were no pictures of other women.

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

Well I checked his phone and found out he was married and had a child after 4 years dating.

checking someone’s phone isn’t healthy behavior then be prepared to cheated for years and years lol

-7 ( +0 / -7 )

Then play a game. Like in the South Korean Remake 'Intimate Strangers'

Then both will know who cheat who.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Could have been his work phone. I have no pictures on my work phone.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I don’t know why I did it, but I picked it up and clicked the home button. I went through his phone.

You know why you did it. You're a sneak.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Funny. They have been dating a month. He's Japanese. I bet they've been on, what, one date? And she feels hurt? Time for that man to find a new girl.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

It took me months of being with my boyfriend before I had any pictures, because we're just both not very good at taking them. Not everyone has the same expectations to what a relationship should be, this woman should definitely think about hers.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Well enough "professional" assholes tend to use more then one phone to get on the save side ;)

If the guy isn't stupid he has one phone for each woman he is Dating ....

by the way, I only have one phone and one woman ;)

2 ( +2 / -0 )

If you leave the phone unlocked with a girl you just started dating, you better hide all incriminating evidence (photos in a hidden folder, any suspicious chats in private mode). And after one month, I would not stuff my phone with pictures with my girlfriend; heck, I don't even think I have too many pictures with my wife...

3 ( +3 / -0 )

This one CLEARLY needs to be dumped & PRONTO, end of story

4 ( +4 / -0 )

You'd think she'd already know if he took pictures of them together on his phone... Then again, judging by her actions she doesn't seem to be driven by common sense.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Did SHE have pictures of them on her phone?!!!

5 ( +5 / -0 )

She seems like one seriously insecure chick, run a mile from those ones gents!

5 ( +5 / -0 )

It does actually remind me of some j chick I went on a first date with. I got a text from a mate and she was like 'who's that who's that' whilst trying to look at my phone. Another mate called me and she did the same, warning lights were flashing and I never saw her again.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

There are men and women like that every where. They don't make good partners

1 ( +1 / -0 )

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