Whether you catch him in the act or come across a post your boyfriend’s liked, we have all had at least one experience where a boyfriend likes other girls’ pictures on Instagram. This can feel like a slap in the face. In some cases, it can even feel like micro-cheating, but is it?
It all depends on your relationship, your man, and even who the other girl is. So, before you freak out, take a breath, and read on to understand this weird modern-day dating problem.
Most relationships begin without ever talking about rules or regulations, especially when it comes to social media. We know what cheating is, but can you cheat through social media? Even with something as small as a “like”?
Well, that is up to you. You need to decide if the tap of a heart means more than what it is. But, first, talk to your boyfriend. [Read: What is micro-cheating and signs someone’s doing it already]
Does he like everyone’s pictures? Maybe he just throws out likes like Oprah throws out cars. It could mean nothing more than him being polite. Maybe he thinks he’ll get more likes if he likes everyone’s pictures. But then again, is he liking a girl’s pictures when she isn’t even following him back? It’s things like these that make everything tricky.
Before jumping to conclusions, let him make his case. Sure, he could be lying, but you need to give him a chance when it comes to social media. It is a strange world that no one gets just right. It is still new to us all and things are always changing.
[Read: Is it normal if your boyfriend follows sexy Instagram models and likes their pictures?]
Let’s face it, it’s as easy as a click to open a new finsta *fake account* on Instagram and shuffle between his main account and secondary Insta account. So if a guy really does want to follow random girls or heart their pictures or even drop an eggplant emoji and a water drops emoji, he could do it using his backup or finsta account, and you wouldn’t even know it, would you? This is where trust in the relationship comes into play.
Now there really is no reason for him to be randomly doing that with a fake account. But then again, hey, you don’t own him, so if he wants to tap like on a sexy girl’s photo, that’s up to him. But why though?!
On the other hand, if a guy likes random girls’ pictures from his main account, that’s weird too, right? Your common friends could come across the same picture and see that he’s liked it. They’d wonder what’s wrong with him, and that just makes you and your relationship look bad too.
So does he even care what you think? Let’s take a look at all of this below, and we’ll tell you exactly what you need to do next too. [Read: Instagram flirting and how it’s secretly ruining so many relationships]
Other than just liking everyone’s photos, let’s look at the reasons why he might be liking other girls’ pictures on Instagram. These aren’t excuses, but they can explain something that is making you upset without having to get into an argument.
Doesn’t that sound nice? Before you accuse him of cheating or not caring about your feelings, consider these…
He may just be a nice guy and throws around likes. Some people just like everything they pass by. It doesn’t mean much of anything.
If he doesn’t put much thought into social media, he may just like everything. While you consider if a post really deserves your much-coveted like, he may not be the same. That’s something to think about.
He isn’t shying away or being sketchy, but he thinks she is hot and likes her picture. Whether she is someone he knows, an Instagram model, or some random person, he thinks she’s hot and he likes it. There it is. There is nothing more or less to the situation. [Read: Is flirting cheating when you’re in a relationship?]
Like many guys who like other girls’ pictures of Instagram, he may not even be thinking.
He does not consider that you might be upset or that you even see his activities online. He is mindlessly scrolling and not putting much, if any, thought into it.
He literally doesn’t see the big deal so he just does it. Why would you care? It is a like on social media. He doesn’t see it as cheating so he doesn’t get why you would. Yes, he is assuming, and that should follow up with a conversation, but he wasn’t trying to hurt you.
If he was in a relationship before where he constantly liked other girls’ pictures on Instagram and it wasn’t a problem, he didn’t foresee it being one now.
It isn’t that he assumes you and his ex are the same, he just didn’t consider it would be an issue when it is something he is used to doing. [Read: How do you define cheating these days?]
If you like hot guys’ pictures on Instagram, he couldn’t care less, so he doesn’t get why you would when the situation is reversed.
Sure, you aren’t the same person but he doesn’t see it that way. If he doesn’t care, neither should you. Are you doing something wrong when you like a guy’s photo?
He is basing a potential problem on his intentions, not the outcome. You know how guys always say, “I didn’t mean to hurt you,” or, “I didn’t intend to hurt you?” He doesn’t see a problem because he had no intention of following up on the like.
He wasn’t going to comment, DM, or talk to this girl. Your boyfriend liking a girl’s picture on Instagram wasn’t about hurting you, so he doesn’t see the problem.
If they’re following each other on Instagram, chances are, they may just be friends. But if you see your boyfriend regularly liking pictures of some random girl on Instagram who isn’t following him back *and she isn’t really an Instagram celebrity*, this is when you have a very valid reason to confront your boyfriend and ask him to explain himself.
Now, why would he regularly like some random girl’s pictures or drop comments when they don’t even know each other in real life? He may have an excuse here, but usually, the only reason here is him trying to get to know her better. [Read: 15 signs he’s talking to another girl and using you until he hooks her]
Before we get too carried away, let’s start from the beginning. Who is this girl? We are definitely not blaming her. Your boyfriend liked her picture, so there is no need to bully her, attack her, or even vent about her. She didn’t do anything wrong. Do not take out your aggression or jealousy on her. Even if there is something going on, odds are, he is lying to her as well.
But, there is power in the knowledge of who she is. Is the girl whose picture he liked his sister? Maybe it is his lifelong friend who grew up down the street from? Is it his cousin? Is it his best friend’s girlfriend?
If it is his ex-girlfriend, there may be more meaning than one of those other options. So, from there, more discussion certainly needs to be had. [Read: 13 secret signs your boyfriend isn’t over his ex yet]
Now, if it is a celebrity, you can relax. It really isn’t a big deal if it is someone he has zero chance of meeting or talking to. Selena Gomez and Rihanna are not threats to you or your relationship, and asking him not to like their photos is a little controlling, and quite frankly, pointless. [Read: Controlling or caring? The thin line that people love to cross]
Plus, we’re sure you like Chris Pratt’s Instagram photos or Chris Evans’ or any of the others Chris’s. Even if you don’t know of her, she might be an obscure singer or wrestling pro. Think before you react.
And, before going nuts on your boyfriend for liking other girls’ pictures on Instagram, look at your own behavior.
You cannot ask him to unfollow other girls or stop liking their pictures if you do the same thing. Do you like your ex’s photos? Do you still follow him? Is it okay for you to follow hot random guys who post shirtless pics?
If you are unwilling to do the same thing you ask of him, you may need to leave Instagram out of your relationship. [Read: How guys feel when their girlfriend follows hot guys on Instagram]
And to be fully realistic, just because he doesn’t like someone’s pictures publicly from his main account doesn’t mean he isn’t doing it privately with another account, remember that. And just because he doesn’t follow a girl or like her photos publicly doesn’t mean he can’t see her photos or zoom into it.
Think about how important your boyfriend’s Instagram behavior really is. Usually, likes are just likes, but comments with heart eyes, nicknames, and private messages are where you must draw the line.
What is your limit? You need to decide what feels right to you and talk to him about it. [Read: Instagram flirting and how it’s secretly ruining your relationship]
Before starting a conversation with your boyfriend about his unsavory Instagram behavior, decide what you want out of this. Think about what you want from him. What is the ideal outcome of this talk?
Do you want him to understand how you feel about what he’s doing and for him to make his own choice? Or do you want to ask him to stop? Do you want to know who a specific girl is? Do you think he is actually cheating? Is there a reason to believe it?
Go into this conversation calmly and coolly. You are not accusing him of cheating. You are simply sharing how his Instagram likes make you feel. Let him know that him liking random girls’ pictures makes you feel icky or uncomfortable.
You can let him know if it makes you nervous or jealous. Now, this can become a larger conversation about trust as a whole, but if he has nothing to hide, he should have no problem hearing you out and offering a compromise. [Read: How to fix the lack of communication in your relationship]
Guys can get very defensive about their Instagram behavior. But once again, if they aren’t doing anything shady and are really just hitting like on a hot girl’s photo, there is no harm, and they know they aren’t doing anything wrong.
When they go above that to commenting or DMs or actually taking that like to somewhere off the internet, that is when they get nervous and angry about your worries or concerns.
We do not want to tell you he is cheating, but he could be micro-cheating or considering cheating too. And that is up to you to figure out. Are you willing to forgive and move forward, or is that not enough honesty for you? [Read: Social media rules all happy couples follow without realizing it]
Unless you have a very valid reason, you should always go into this type of situation, giving him the benefit of the doubt. Unless he has lied to you or cheated on you before, a like is just a like in about 90% of scenarios. Let him explain it, and it could all come down to a simple misunderstanding.
From there, hopefully, your mind will be at ease, or he will only like photos of celebs and his cousins. If you have a valid reason for being anxious about this behavior due to past trust issues in other relationships or this one, he should understand and meet you halfway in a place that you are both comfortable in. [Read: The most common and more painful types of cheating]
Couples have only had to deal with social media in their relationships for about a decade or so. Before that, there was one less pressure, one less hurdle, and one less thing poking at your relationship.
But with the rise of social media, especially Instagram, there is more access and more pressure. In the olden days, your man would have to leave the house to cheat or lock the bathroom door with some Playboy.
Now they have real women to connect with at their fingertips, and that isn’t very comforting. But with that, it should not be tempting to anyone loyal to you and your relationship. [Read: Cross these 13 types of guys off your list because they’ll just break your heart]
Have you ever thought about messaging another guy on Instagram? If yes, your relationship may need some reevaluation. If not, then you may need to reevaluate your boyfriend.
Instagram is something new and complicated that gets in between you and your boyfriend, but it shouldn’t destroy your trust and it won’t unless one of you lets it.
[Read: 15 things a guy should NEVER do on Instagram if he has a girlfriend]
If you notice your boyfriend likes other girls’ pictures on Instagram, you need to talk about it. Stalking his activity and resenting him for it will not help.
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