What are the requirements of a happy romantic relationship? A set of shared values is important if you’re looking for anything more substantial than a fun fling. On the other end of the scale, common interests are good to have too, for those lighter dates when you and your partner want to do something other than discuss your life philosophies.

Many people would say the most critical element, though, is trust. After all, no matter how attracted you might be to a person, without the ability to trust one another, your collective jealousy and insecurity will eventually poison any potential you have to be happy together. Of course, building that trust can be a long, difficult, and sometimes scary process, but it’s something you eventually have to do, right?

Not if you’re one of the roughly 30 percent of Japanese women who’ve secretly checked the messages on their boyfriends’ cell phones.

Match Alarm is a Japanese matchmaking service specializing in what’s known as konkatsu, helping marriage-minded people who’re searching for a serious relationship. Recently, the company asked 3,277 single men and women if they’d ever checked a dating partner’s phone, to which 32.8 percent of women said yes.

In comparison, only 20.6 percent of males asked admitted to the same transgression. We’re not sure if this is because men are nobler, or because they’re just too dumb and/or arrogant to believe that any woman could be dissatisfied with them.

“I mean, I’ve got so much going for myself!”

The main justification women gave was a suspicion their boyfriend was being unfaithful.

“I felt like he might be seeing someone else.”
“I’m worried he might cheat on me.”

It’s also worth noting that while many people in other countries try to remain on civil or even friendly terms with their exes, for the most part this generally doesn’t fly in Japan, as illustrated by the woman who said she checked her guy’s cell “to make sure he wasn’t in contact with his old girlfriend.”

Sometimes, the boyfriend brought this suspicion upon themselves. “I checked it because I saw him secretively playing around with his phone. A woman’s intuition is always right!” asserted one respondent.

We can understand being concerned if your boyfriend goes outside to talk every time he gets a call or gets upset if you so much as look over while he’s writing a message, but on the other hand, we can think of plenty of times when a guy might be doing something with his phone and not necessarily feel the need to show or explain it to his girl.

For example, no guy’s girlfriend is happy and excited to watch each and every time he pulls off a sweet Street Fighter combo, because if she was, he’d have already made her his wife.

Of course, not everyone woman was motivated by doubts about her boyfriend’s devotion. One replied that she looked at the messages on her boyfriend’s phone because “I love him so much, I want to know every little detail of his private life.”

It’s worth noting that the exact Japanese phrase she used, suki sugite, can also be translated as “I love him too much,” and we agree she kind of crossed a line at some point.

Yet another didn’t necessarily think her boyfriend was up to anything, but looked at his phone for what she felt was another compelling reason. “I did it because he looked at mine,” she explained.

Romance: a dish best served cold?

While we agree that revenge makes a great sub-plot in murder mysteries and action films we’re not sure it’s such a great fit in the script for a good love story. Ditto this woman’s comment.

“I know it’s wrong to look, but I just can’t help myself.”

We don’t claim to be all-knowing love experts, and having never met this woman’s boyfriend we can’t say whether or not he’s actually deserving of the benefit of the doubt his girlfriend refuses to give him. Still, we don’t think we’re being too bold in suggesting that, regardless of what initially set you down that path, any time you find yourself describing your actions with “I know it’s wrong, but…” at least one of two things is going on.

First, it’s possible you don’t fully understand what “wrong,” means. Second, and this is the one we’re pretty sure of, the person you’re dating probably isn’t the one for you.

Source: Match Alarm
[ Read in Japanese ]