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Topic Digital Wellness

Signs You're Dating a Stalker

Stalking is a scary behavior that nearly 1 in 3 women and 1 in 6 men will experience in their lifetime. Of those reported stalking victims, 69% of female victims and 80% of male victims experienced threats of physical harm. Worse, stalking frequently occurs from someone you know or are already dating. Be aware of these common signs that you’re dating a stalker, and take the right steps to protect yourself online with Clario.

Table of contents

Below, we gathered 15 signs you're dating a stalker that you need to be aware of.

1. No respect ask-out etiquette

Someone who aggressively tries to ask you out without backing down and letting you get a say in the matter could be a stalker. One example is if they ask you out and suggest a date. Then, if you say you’re busy that day, he’ll suggest a different date, and then another, and another without you offering a day that works best for you.  

2. Catching you unaware at home or in the office

A stalker typically tries to learn as much about you as possible, including where you live and work. They may show up at your workplace or home unannounced to see you. This can be particularly unnerving if you haven’t told them where you work or live.  

3. Rushing to meet your family

While there’s nothing wrong with introducing a significant other to your family early in a relationship, a stalker may try to rush to meet your family or aggressively pressure you into letting them meet. As we’ve mentioned, a stalker wants to learn as much about you as they can, and quickly, so they’ll use your family and the information they learn from them to their advantage.  

4. Requesting your friends/family's phone numbers

This is another way a stalker can arm themselves with more information about you. They’ll request your friends and family’s contact information without prompting. It may also seem like they are requesting this information out of nowhere.  

5. Getting angry if you want space

It is completely normal to need a little space from your significant other. We all need time to recharge. But stalkers may get angry when you try to give yourself that much-needed me-time. This isn’t healthy and should be taken as a warning sign that this person could be too dependent on you.  

6. Disliking your friends

Stalkers and abusive significant others may frequently express their dislike of your friends. Part of the reason for this is to seclude you from others so they can have more of your time. They want you to feel isolated so you’ll become more dependent on them.  

7. Engaging in your hobbies

While there’s nothing wrong with having common interests, a common sign of a stalker is having all of the same hobbies and interests as you, with none of their own. They may even ditch their own hobbies in favor of yours in order to spend more time with you.  

8. Expecting you to agree with everything they say

A prominent sign of dating a stalker girl or guy is that they can’t take ‘no’ for an answer and expect you to agree with everything they say. It’s common in abusive relationships for the abuser to break down their partner by trying to eliminate their point of view and only accepting what they think is right.  

9. Getting angry if you don't return calls or texts immediately

You are your stalker's obsession. If you don’t return calls or texts, they may get angry or paranoid that you’re cheating on them or going to break up with them. They may constantly bombard you with messages about where you are until you get back to them.  

10. Finding private information on you before you’ve provided it

Stalkers find ways of accessing your private information before you’ve shared it with them. This may include friends' or family members’ names, where you work, where you went on vacation, your pet’s name, where you grew up, or even more sensitive information like your passwords for personal accounts.  

 

Sometimes, it may be as serious as knowing what you were doing when they weren’t around. It might feel like they are spying on you or that the following things are taking place:  

If you suspect that anyone is listening in on your conversations or spying on your through phone or computer cameras, check your emails for breach immediately. Follow these simple steps to use Clario’s data breach monitor to find out if your emails have been compromised.

  1. Download Clario and set up an account
  2. Once you’re in, click Identity on the dashboard
  3. Hit Add email and type it in
  4. Wait for Clario to run the check
  5. If the breach is detected, follow the on-screen instructions.

11. Watching you in social settings

Another stalking behavior is that they’ll watch you closely in social settings, likely to the point that others have noticed it. For example, a friend might say, “They haven’t taken their eyes off you since you got here.” Or every time you look up, you see their eyes following you, and they don’t seem to be interacting with anyone else.  

12. Using gifts to make up for obsessive behavior

When someone is stalking while in a relationship, they may use gifts to apologize for their obsessive behavior. They’ll try to apologize and shower you with gifts to make it seem like they know what they were doing was wrong. But in all reality, they’ll likely continue with those behaviors.  

13. Getting jealous easily

One of the most common signs your boyfriend is a stalker is jealousy. A little jealousy is normal in most new relationships, but a stalker makes their jealousy known, usually aggressively. They’ll question your whereabouts constantly, accuse you of cheating on them and try to force you not to see or hang out with other people. And they won’t just be jealous of potential romantic interests; they’ll be jealous of any attention you give to friends, family, or even pets.  

14. Attacking your reputation

Stalkers and abusers want to tear you down and destroy your sense of self-worth so you become more dependent on them for validation. They’ll attack your reputation constantly. When people face that kind of barraging day after day, they often begin to believe the lies.  

15. Threatening to harm themselves or you

Perhaps the most severe sign that you’re dating a stalker is that they threaten to harm themself or you when they don’t get their way. If you try to break up with them or do something they disagree with, they’ll threaten self-harm or even to hurt you. Immediately separate yourself from any situation in which you may be subject to harm.  

What to do if you’re being stalked

No one should have to deal with the stress, fear, and potential harm of being stalked. It’s important to pay attention to the signs of a stalker girlfriend or boyfriend and take action if you suspect that anyone is stalking you.  

Trust your gut

Always trust your gut when it comes to the people you are dating. If you feel uneasy around someone, you don’t have to spend time with them. Cut off communication and move on. Your safety and comfort should always come first.  

Alert others

Whether you suspect a current partner or an ex is stalking you, you should always alert others to your suspicions. Keep your friends and family informed about your location at all times so they can check up on you and call for help if needed.  

Keep records

If you are a victim of stalking or any other criminal offense, try to keep records of everything that could be evidence. This may include threatening texts, emails, police reports, or video and voice recordings.  

 

Having this evidence can help you get a restraining order against your stalker.  

Don't rationalize the stalking behavior

It is often easier to brush off a potential stalking behavior than to confront the situation. Make sure you recognize unhealthy behaviors in a relationship and don’t rationalize obsessive behavior. The more you rationalize a behavior, the more accepting of it you become.  

Connect with an advocate

There are many resources available to victims of stalking and abuse. Take advantage of these resources and connect with an advocate who can walk you through the best actions to take.  

 

Here are some national resources that the CDC recommends:

  • Victim Connect: 1-855-4victim (1-855-484-2846)
  • National Domestic Violence Hotline: 1−800−799−7233 or TTY 1−800−787−3224
  • The National Sexual Assault Hotline: 1-800-656-HOPE (4673)

Contact law enforcement

Stalking can range from mildly uncomfortable to life-threatening. Whatever your situation, if you suspect that you have a stalker, collect records and contact local law enforcement with all the evidence you have. They can walk you through the best steps to take for your protection, file a police report that you can take to a judge for a restraining order, and take action to talk to and even arrest your stalker if necessary.  

Conclusion

When you’re in a relationship, you should feel safe with your partner, not questioning whether or not they are stalking you.  

 

Your safety and comfort should always be your first priority.  

 

Pay attention to the signs and take the best steps to alert the proper authorities and protect yourself.  

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