Why Stalking Your Ex Online is a Bad Idea

I had one of those moments when I’m about to leave the office, nearly drained but felt amazingly productive, and the tired angsty self comes out, ready to hand out ‘damns’ to silly things just to humor me.

Visiting my Ex’s Instagram was the most daring thing for me that night, having dreaded, night and day, that particular route I knew would uproot the progress of ‘cleansing’ her out of my system. After all, it’s been two years.

Ex’s Instagram wasn’t set to private, as though mocking my very existence to dare take a peek into her amazing world without me.

It stings because we all want our Ex’s world to be demolished, mobbed by far superior alien species, or burned with comet fires, because we’re not part of it anymore.

Anything we’re not part of doesn’t have the right to exist. We are the world, no matter how chauvinistic that may sound, but we don’t want other worlds to exist, more so, thrive, outside of our axis.

Predictably, she was having fun. It was OK, and I was genuinely happy things have cooled down.

The happy feeling didn’t last, though, as swiping down, I was taken to the pictures I know were taken when we’re still together. The captions didn’t help either.

Here are three reasons should never stalk your Ex ever again:

You’ve never really totally moved on
When people say they will move on, they’re talking about getting rid of you in their system.

This is easier said than done. And many are stuck in the ‘said’ part. It’s not that it’s their fault being emotionally weak, but doing so is simply impossible.

We’re talking about dealing with your brain, which, regardless of its size, is a complex storage of everything that’s happened in your life.

Knowledge, emotions, traits, memories, senses, etc., your brain has them all.

Routine is where we effectively learn new things. It’s one of those practices the brain consider as important, owing to its continuous occurrence in our consciousness.

Why do you think you can drive without thinking you’re driving? That’s routine doing it for you.

Back when you were a happy couple, riding pink elephants in the park and munching marshmallows beside the creek, you’ve ‘recklessly’ created routines together.

Strong, emotionally-packed routines, which your brain identifies as VIP, storing them somewhere deep in your consciousness, or if you want to go old-school, heart.

This is why breakups are painful.

The brain suddenly goes to a state of panic, reversing the VIP status it once given to the routines you two have shared. The pinch and the sinking feeling in your heart were just ‘after shocks.’ More so, the tears and the screaming.

The brain is powerful and capable of anything you want it to do, but it needs time.

And so, moving on will be tough in the first few weeks, as the brain works tirelessly, withdrawing the memory of the ‘couple routine’ it once identified as a vital part of your existence.

Which leads us back to stalking your Ex being a bad idea: You’ve never totally moved on.

Your brain just tossed their memory to somewhere insignificant. In a place where memories now cling like a kite stuck in power lines, weathered, feeble, with no use whatsoever, but to remind you of something undesirable in the past.

And you don’t want to see the kite ever again, or it will remind you, in flashes, of its high-flying days.

It’s a sign of insecurity
If you’ve been competitive once in your life, whether in sports or eat-all-you-can contests, you’ve been in that situation where checking the competition constantly becomes a part of the competition.

Depending on whether you have the advantage or not, it proves to be a distraction, an unnecessary, time-wasting one at that.

Stalking your Ex is the same. The worst part is, those who check their Ex first lose.

If you know you’re doing your best and is confident in your moving-on progress, why check theirs?

To see if they’re not as well-traveled as you are? Or not surrounded by happy, smiling friends, or busy as hell, like you are?

Say, they are indeed not looking as ‘vibrant’ as you are in your posts, why do you still feel something’s missing?

How come revenge didn’t deliver on its promise of sweet, succulent satisfaction?

The answer lies in our nature to empathize. As social beings, it has been hardwired into us.

Anything that manifests sadness, loneliness and all other types of ‘nesses’ will reach us in a way undeterred by past memories or emotions – at least in the first 30 seconds.

As someone who has an emotional falling out with their Ex, feeling empathy, even in its minutest, is the last thing you want to feel seeing the other person, who is in a dire state.

Anything emotional shouldn’t reach your now-moving-on heart, because it would only take it seconds to remember the past, with empathy being one of love’s many curious forms.

Most of their posts will be about you
Even though, it’s not always the case.

As their memory of you gradually fades into obscurity, they will be themselves for the first time after a period of partnership.

Their posts, no matter how mundane, will be captioned like Pixar posters.

‘Happy as a hippo,’ ‘Life goes on,’ ‘Moving on,’ and other bunch of redundant messes will be inescapable, like that silly ‘Love me like you do’ song.

This is a side of them you’ve never really paid attention to before, as your focus was to get to them from the beginning, with or without wifi.

And you will not take it very lightly.

Whether the parting was peaceful or it involved flying sauce pans everywhere, there will always be unsaid words raging to be, well, said.

For you, their posts will be those unsaid words. And you can’t counter them, even if you wanted to, because first and foremost, you’re just stalking.

And like flying daggers, their silly Instagram posts will stab you. Deep, slow and penetrating.
And you didn’t have to see them.