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Inside the “Are We Sharing Boyfriends?” Facebook Groups

Imagine “John Tucker Must Die,” but on Facebook.

Credit: Antonio Guillem

“Is he cheating?”

That’s a question Nadia* (25) asked herself.

A busy grad student, Nadia never had a reason to look up her boyfriend online. Three years into a relationship, she never carried any suspicions. Then came TikTok. 

Scrolling past energy healers and tarot card readers alleging someone in her life was being untruthful, Nadia stumbled upon a viral TikTok: an introduction to the “Are we sharing boyfriends?” (AWSB) Facebook group. 

Naturally curious, Nadia joined one of the Las Vegas groups— you know, “to see if she knew anyone posted in the group.” Two months later, she found her boyfriend.

“Does anyone know him?” read a post, flaunting a screenshot of Nadia’s boyfriend. No one else in the group seemed to know him, but Nadia did. 

“I owed it to myself to confront him face-on,” Nadia shared to Cosmopolitan. So she did, and her boyfriend didn’t deny he’d cheated. The couple split up soon after, and Nadia hasn’t spoken to him since. 

“Are we sharing boyfriends?” are local Facebook groups where members post pictures of their partners, either to figure out if they’re cheating or to learn more about them. Users must request to join and admins have to accept. Other groups carry rules such as “No snitching and NO starting drama.” 

Las Vegas boasts the largest community, with 11,000 members spread across three groups. Seattle, Bakersfield, California, and Philadelphia also have their own, with 3,000 members each. Other smaller groups also exist in Little Rock, Arkansas, and Lexington, Kentucky, with approximately 2,000 members each. 

Pandora’s (Love) Box

There’s no denying dating during the 21st century is difficult, especially for women. For your one prince charming, you’ll find a dozen toads, and for your one rom-com, you’ll hear a dozen horror stories.

Wanting to join this type of Facebook group is only human. Add the fact these groups put real relationships on the line, and you can’t help but want to tune in anxiously almost all of the time. 

According to Andrea Dindinger, MA, MTF, a psychotherapist who specializes in intimacy and relationships, fear and intuition are often large motivators behind wanting to join these groups. For decades, people have searched through their partner’s emails and bank accounts based on intuition, social media is no exception.

For some, communities like AWSB have offered a supportive environment where women can share their experiences and protect each other. Other members have even become real-life friends after joining the group.

Yet, AWSB aims to help women catch their cheating partners, others have used these spaces to dig up information on their casual partners (aka people with whom they’re in a non-committed relationship). Didinger advises against this:

“If the idea of them seeing other people makes you uncomfortable to the extent that you’d be willing to post about them in a public forum, the best healthy next step is to communicate your feelings directly, so you can ensure you’re getting the kind of relationship you want.”

Likewise, if one fears they’re in an unhealthy relationship, Didinger recommends talking to a licensed therapist. Speaking with a therapist can help one navigate their feelings and learn how to confront their partners.

Whatever your opinion is on AWSB Facebook groups, one thing is true: everyone is worthy of a healthy relationship, one where they get to feel valued, happy, and safe.

*Name has been changed.

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