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Jared Freid (@jtrain56) is a comedian and one of the “Bros” at HeTexted.com. HeTexted is a site where girls can get advice on the texts they receive from guys. Every Thursday on PostGradProblems, Jared will answer one of the questions from his HeTexted mailbag. These are real questions from real girls visiting the site each day. If you have any of your own dating questions, go to www.HeTexted.com and ask Jared or any of the other Bros who fit your particular situation.
Q. I’ve been on four dates with this guy over a six-week period. Everything seems to be going well and I think he likes me a lot. The thing is, I’ve noticed he likes sexy photos of girls on Instagram and Facebook. I haven’t been digging for these details, I’ve just noticed. I know it doesn’t mean he’s flirting with them or that he’s not interested in me; I’m just wondering if it’s a valid concern. I know I’m an attractive woman and have a lot going for me, but all of that doesn’t necessarily prevent another girl from entering the picture. It’s still early and he and I are not in a relationship. He likes my photos too, by the way. Almost every picture I post on Insta, he likes. This all may sound silly, I know. Do you think I should let this go? Or is it a valid concern? It’s not like he did something wrong. He’s a single guy. Guys will be guys, I guess.
This isn’t a silly concern at all. If every time I posted a picture of myself in my hot gym clothes and a specific girl liked those pictures, I’d think she was into me. I’d message her something like, “What’s up baby?” And then she’d answer something like, “Just checking out that fine ass of yours.” Then I’d say, “What time should I be over?” And she’d write back, “Whenever you’re ready to party.” And then I’d wake up from my dream and spend ten minutes standing at a right angle trying to pee with a boner. The honest truth is that when a guy constantly likes your pictures, he’s doing it for the slight chance of this dream scenario happening. He thinks it’s remotely possible because this is exactly how every guy would proceed with a girl constantly liking his pictures. Think about Jenn Selter or any other Instagram fitness (softcore) model. They get thousands of likes. Why? You get the yoga pants with or without likes. Some dudes even comment things like, “You look gorgeous” as if one of these girls will look at his profile amongst the thousands and think, “Maybe he’s the one. He can even correctly spell gorgeous.” Looking and liking are two different things. Liking is an acknowledgement that I’m here, I’m into it, and I’m erect.
That being said, I wouldn’t start grilling your boyfriend. If your guy is following and liking pictures from fitness models, or Kardashians, or any other account that has an unbelievable amount of whackers — I mean, followers — understand that this is normal and harmless. I follow some of those accounts and I do it for the same reason people go to the zoo, I can’t stare at this stuff at home. These girls are oddities and, just like apes in the wild, you can’t just sit and stare. So we put wild animals in the zoo and we put Instagram models on the internet. Now everyone gets to look, point, and drool without the police getting involved. The fact that he’s liking these pictures is weird but, again, it’s harmless. Think of the guy who chanted “USA” at the TV during the World Cup. The team can’t hear him but he still feels like he’s a part of the action.
If he’s liking pictures of girls who he knows or has the possibility of actually speaking with, then it’s a different story. Liking a picture is putting the vibe out there with deniability. It’s like taking a route that makes you say “Excuse me,” to a cute girl. Did you mean to take a deep breath while you squeezed by her on the subway? Maybe. Did you just want to smell her hair? C’mon. I just took the stairs, I was a little winded. You see what I mean. I only believe this because everyone knows the people who actively like a lot of their online stuff. We have them on a list that we’re happy to have exist, but we try not ask questions about. This guy is trying to get on some lists. This could be for when the relationship ends or just because he enjoys the attention he gets back. I really don’t know. In this case, since it’s early in the relationship and he’s exhibited a trend of being a “liker” then I’d say you should make light of it. Make him the butt of any “Facebook/Instagram stalker” jokes so he knows you’re noticing. It’ll probably die down or become a conversation, but at least you didn’t create an accusatory environment. If neither of those things happen, then it might be time to end things and meet a guy who just likes silently sitting at the zoo admiring gorrilla boobs like the rest of us.
Jared Freid is a comedian and HeTexted “Bro” based in NYC. You can ask him dating questions at HeTexted.com or find him on Twitter (@JTrain56) for weekly columns, podcasts, and videos.