As the saying goes, "With great power, comes great responsibility". This is exactly the case in the age of technology and social media. Now that we have massive access to an endless amount of information via the world wide web, that same amount of people and topics also have access to us as well. Although the average person never thinks twice about the possibility that they're being cyber stalked, maybe they should.
To be clear, there are many methods of cyberstalking. For the purpose of this article, the term “cyberstalking” is used to describe those who silently watch profiles to gain intel and use it to their advantage. This could be a woman you don’t know, one you’re mildly acquainted with, or even one you are in a relationship with. And given that we are living in an age with an increasing level of uncertainty seemingly around every corner, figuring out ways to take control of our lives is vital. That said, although you may not be able to completely prevent someone from stalking you, you can certainly do enough to prevent them from being a threat or nuisance to you and those close to you. Are you in a relationship with a woman who seems a bit off? Or perhaps the lady you always see at the coffee shop always seems to know a bit more about you than she should? Well, it won't be pretty, but the following is a closer look at 15 ways to tell she's cyberstalking you.
16 She's Insecure
Although the two aren't mutually exclusive, being overly insecure is always a common trait of a stalker. This is due to the fact that some feel so insecure with regards to the general worthiness of receiving love, that they are always expecting to either get cheated on or outright dumped. Therefore, in the case that this is someone you're in a relationship with, they may be cyberstalking you just to make sure you are not off with other women. Not to make it sound minuscule in the least. However, there are levels to everything, even stalking and as far as stalkers are concerned, an insecure girl who has some trust issues is the least of your concerns. In fact, with time and counselling, she can be cured (not that you'll stick around long enough to see that come to fruition, but it's good to know you won't necessarily have to dart down a dark alley to avoid her in the future either).
15 She's Possessive
In addition to that, stalkers are often overly possessive. To be clear, many men and women are possessive with regards to romantic relationships in general as society promotes monogamy as the be all and end all of the love. In the case of an insecure cyber stalker, they are likely far more possessive than the average person and not afraid to show it. For instance, they may feel the need to know all of your friends (especially the female ones) and feel it is their "right" or even duty to police the character of these people and decide whether they are worthy of remaining in your circle. In general, the cyber stalker will know more about the women you deal with than you do... and this is because they literally spend countless hours sitting on a computer, rifling through their profiles. She will then use this new info as leverage to begin pushing people out of your life so she can eventually have you all to herself.
14 She Fell "In Love" Too Quickly
Moreover, a cyber stalker will also try to convince you that everything they do is out of love. And since they behave like this from the very beginning, they will go great lengths to convince you (and even themselves) that they are in love with you fairly early on. They will likely tell you it was "love at first sight", but neglect to mention that "first sight" was actually a few months ago when they first started lurking on your social media pages, in order to find out which gym you were in order to carefully plan this "pop up", in which she miraculously glides into your life without a hair out of place. The bottom line is, she will use the l-word to justify her stalkerish behaviors and if you accept this excuse, things will get much worse before they ever get better.
13 Thinly Veiled Threats
Moreover, she'll also use thinly veiled threats to keep you in line. To be clear, these are not the same as the half-joking threats on your life made by an angry girlfriend or family member. However, a cyber stalker will make specific threats that they intend to follow through on. In other words, while an angry girlfriend (with some anger management issues) may threaten to harm you in some unspecified manner, a cyber stalker will say something like, "If you ever talk to that girl at your job again, I'll run both of you over". Mind you, it is rare that any woman actually follows through on anything this serious. However, this does mean that the cyber stalker may have already murdered you in their mind... many times before.
12 She Has Cyberstalked Before
People very rarely change, and when they do, it is often for the worst. Seriously, not to get all pessimistic, but in this case, it is warranted. Let me put it this way, although stalking of any kind is frowned upon by society at large, in the case of women, they are often treated with leniency above all else. This is due to the stereotype that men are stronger than women and therefore, women can behave as violently or a crazily towards men (and even other women) as they wish. Situations involving male stalkers are treated which less tolerance than those involving women. Interestingly enough, at least one study asserts that men in certain professions are actually cyberstalked far more than women. Either way, if she has jokingly told you stories about all her crazy cyberstalking-related escapades in the past, you should certainly expect more of the same.
11 She Has Cyberstalking Friends
Birds of a feather truly tend to flock together. Therefore, if she has friends who cyberstalk people, they are likely cyber stalking you too. Think about it, what do you think people do with their friends?! If you have a bunch of friends who like to play sports, you get together to play basketball. Likewise, if you have a bunch of friends who enjoy reading, you start a book club. So, if a girl you know hangs out with a girl who brags about her ability to hack into accounts (they're out there) odds are, either your girlfriend is equally as skilled or this is who she calls when she needs help hacking into your account. People don't become friends by accident, and if your girlfriend or a girl who hangs around you also hangs out with someone who is known for this behavior, steer clear… well, as best as you can.
10 She's Friends With All Your “Friends”
Do you have a girlfriend (or just some random annoying girl) who is friends with every single person you’re friends with on your social media pages, even the ones you know they definitely don’t know and have nothing in common with? These are cyberstalker activities. As a means of literally keeping tabs on you, (see what I did there?) a cyber stalker will befriend every single person on your social media pages. They do this as not only a method of searching for intel for their cyberstalking but also, and perhaps more importantly, they attempt to work their way so far into your life that it is impossible to ever fully remove them. This way, when things inevitably go left, they can justify still being around all the time because now, “these are my friends too!”.
9 She "Likes" Or Comments On Every Single Thing You Post
In addition to that, there is nothing wrong with getting a little (or even a lot of) "like" love. However, if she literally never seems to miss a single post, this is a sign of cyberstalking. Think about it, how many odd hours do you randomly find yourself posting online? Also, how often do you post something that you know this person doesn't like in real life, that they still, for some reason, "like" online? This is cyberstalking. There is no way the average person is up to catch every single thing you post. Nor is it plausible that they agree with everything you post. So, if every single time you make a post, within a minute or two, you already have a "like" from this person, they might be cyberstalking you. In addition to digging for intel, the purpose of this is to show you (and everyone else) that they never miss a beat. It's yet another way to assert that they are always watching. This tactic is most commonly used by a girlfriend, but may also be employed by some serious female friends.
8 She Pops Up Places Seemingly Out Of Nowhere
Does she pop up so much you have joked that she must be using GPS tracking? Well, I hate to break it to you, but she just might be. In this age, you can simply go online to find out how and where most people spend their days. In the case of a cyber stalker, they are very skilled at gathering this intel and making it look accidental. In other words, they likely won’t show up to the event that you just made a stat about on your page. However, after digging through a vast array of tags, “likes”, etc. they may discover things such as the grocery store you frequent or the gym you prefer. From that point, they can easily pop up based on clues or developing a general understanding of your schedule. For example, if she finds out you prefer to workout mornings and go at least 3-4 times a week, she just may hang out around that gym every morning until she sees you. Once she does, she’ll say, “Oh, what a coincidence! We have so much in common!”. Yeah, creepy!
7 Always Pushes Boundaries
Cyber stalkers are all about pushing your boundaries. This is largely due to the fact that they do not respect them and want to establish this from the beginning. Moreover, given that they are such grand manipulators, they typically start small and build up to worse violations. For instance, they may begin with things like calling you during the game despite the fact that you have told them that this is off limits. As the relationship goes on, they will do things such as pop up at your home or job, come to events you are attending with your friends, or even invite themselves along after you have told them they weren't invited. The purpose of this behavior is to get you very used to the fact that they intend to pop up any day at any time because that's exactly what they plan to continue doing.
6 Overstaying Their Welcome
In keeping with the last notion, cyber stalkers and stalkers, in general, are known for overstaying their welcome. These are people who literally spend the majority of their waking hours thinking about you and digging up information about you. Therefore, every single time they get a chance to be around you, it's like living a dream that they don't want to end. This is one of the traits that are endearing about stalkers as they show genuine interest in you and truly enjoy spending their time with you. However, taking it back to the issue of line-crossing, this can go left quickly. For example, you may invite them over for a movie and they may stay so long you wonder if they're trying to move in (and they just might be!). Another side effect of having the cyber stalker mentality, there is nothing more exciting to these types than the ability to meddle and rummage through the pages of your life… in real life.
5 She Knows Everything About You... Literally
Do you have a friend or girlfriend that seems to remember everything about you? Even things you don’t remember telling them? Maybe they’re just a good listener… or maybe they’re cyberstalking you. Of course, there is no real way to know for sure. However, in the case in which the person also has many other traits mentioned on this list, all signs point to stalker. Obviously, you never want to punish someone for being attentive and having a good memory. However, in the case in which she seems to know things that you never tell anyone, she has likely been going great lengths to find out more about you. It is possible that you told her this without remembering, but it’s equally as plausible that she found that story being mentioned in the comment section of a #TBT pic you were tagged in by your bestie from elementary school.
4 Has Become Violent
OK, pay careful attention to this one, fellas! As aforementioned, women who stalk are often not taken seriously with regards to posing a serious physical threat. Nevertheless, women are quite capable of hurting or even killing men, as society has shown us time and time again. Depending on how she was raised, some mild physical behaviors (i.e. grabbing, throwing things, etc.) can potentially be worked out in therapy. However, if she is the type to literally throw things directly at you, slap, punch or kick you, or anything like this, especially in relation to being jealous over another woman, she may be a cyber stalker. Most cyber stalkers have anger management issues as well as issues with being overly possessive, this often serves as a recipe for physical and verbal abuse. In a nutshell, popping up unannounced and pouring a drink over your head for being too flirty with the waitress is a clear sign of stalker tendencies.
3 Inappropriate Gifts
In addition to that, although a stalker can also be your girlfriend, they tend to give gifts that are inappropriate for the nature of the relationship. For instance, if you are just friends, they may buy you things such as underwear or erotic gifts for your birthday or even Valentine's Day. In the case that she is already your girlfriend, she may do something like getting a tattoo with your name on it in the early stage of your relationship, or purchase something for you (like a necklace) with her name on it and all but throw tantrums if you dare leave home without it. Stalkers are all about pushing boundaries and making you uncomfortable for their own benefit. This is just more of the same. You will rarely receive a gift from a stalker that is on par with something you'd actually request.
2 Comes To Your Rescue
In addition to that, cyber stalkers are known to come to your rescue. However, more disturbing is the reason behind this: usually, they were stalking you at the time and saw you needed help, or in extreme situations, they may have caused the issue themselves. In the case of a girlfriend stalker, she may have just been watching you from afar and noticed that you were pulled over on the side of the road. However, in the case that she is some extreme creeper you've never met, she may have actually caused the issue. Many cyber-stalkers have self-esteem issues. If your cyber stalker has severe anxiety or believes that you are out of her league, she will have to go to some other extreme to bait you into a conversation. By putting herself in the position to “rescue” you, she paints herself in a more positive light and increases her chances of landing you as a mate (or so she believes).
1 She Has Told You She “Watches” You
Lastly, there is no bigger sign that she might be a cyber stalker than her telling you she is one. To be clear, this is not to say that she outright says, “I’m cyberstalking you”. However, she may routinely tell you things like “she’s always watching”, or the urban slang equivalent, “you ain’t low”. Being the line crossers that they are, part of them just enjoys taunting you about something that you simply can’t control. You may be the one deciding the nature of your relationship, how often you hang out, etc. but she can watch you all day, every day, no matter if you like it or not. She enjoys the look on your face when she pops up at events unannounced as it means that you are affected by her presence (which is far superior to you all but ignoring her very existence) and she plans to play on those raw emotions in order to one day have you totally and completely under her influence and control.