A woman was appalled after discovering sexually explicit pictures of a young woman she recognized on her husband's smartphone.
Redditor "THROWRA4738288" is a 46-year-old woman and her husband is a 50-year-old man, both of whom work as professors at the same university.
The original poster (OP) wrote in the relationship advice sub-Reddit saying that she discovered pictures of a student she and her husband both teach while trying to send her sister vacation photos – all of which were taken on his cellphone.
Unlike her husband, she recently made the switch to a flip phone in an attempt to spend less time on her smartphone and in case of emergencies.
Because of this, the photos of their vacation were all taken on his device.
"My husband has a normal phone. We went on vacation recently and used his phone to take pictures of our trip."
"Yesterday he was out of the house and had left his phone charging. I decided I wanted to send my sister some nice pictures of our vacation."
For the purposes of anonymity, the OP referred to the student as "Kate" and described her as a "nice, smart, and very pretty...just a normal student, I guess."
Breaching the privacy of his cellular activity did not faze her as:
"we've always been open with each other and I had no intention of digging up dirt on him or sneaking through his private stuff."
When she found that his phone suddenly required an access code, she chalked it up to assurance while traveling abroad "to make it harder to steal or something."
"He didn't have a code on his phone before and I was surprised to see he'd added one, but he'd never cared if I'd used his phone before and he uses the same code for almost everything, so I had an easy time guessing and letting myself in."
That was when she saw a folder with the preview indicating that it contained pornographic images. Unable to restrain herself, the OP continued to proceed scrolling through the pictures.
She said her "heart fell into my stomach" when she saw nude photos of Kate.
The OP had opened Pandora's box and there was no going back.
"He had probably fifty nudes of her on his phone. I couldn't believe what I was seeing and I still can't. I am horrified he would do this to me and to her."
"At this point I didn't know how he had gotten the pictures or what. Most of them were screenshots and had filters on them, so I dug around some more and found he had made a snapchat account with a fake name."
"The only friend he had was a girl with a name I didn't recognize. I looked through their messaging history and didn't find anything, so I'm assuming he deleted all the messages from her."
"But her profile had many, many nude photos you could click through, and at this point it became clear that the mystery girl was Kate using a pseudonym."
She learned more about Kate and her husband's troubling obsession with her.
"At this point I set his phone back and went on my computer to dig some more. Googling Kate's fake name brought me to a profile on a webcam porn site she had created."
"There was a lot of porn as well as an advertisement for a snapchat you could pay to be friends with her on for more porn. I am assuming this is how my husband added her."
"I am also assuming he is one of her paying customers on the website, unbeknownst to me. I have no idea if Kate knows her professor is buying her porn, but that seems unlikely to me."
"I was too shocked to say anything to him when he came home last night and he could tell that I was upset, but I lied and told him I got into a spat with my sister so I wouldn't have to confront him."
Although she suspected Kate was making the pornographic content "of her own free will," she was more disturbed by the fact that her husband was saving nude photos of a student he teaches.
"I know I can't ignore this and I also don't want to accidentally out Kate to the entire school and ruin her reputation. Just... what do I do?"
The OP was at a loss for what to do next and asked for guidance on the relationship advice subReddit.
Most Redditors sided with the OP and suggested she needed to confront her husband.
"It's one thing to watch porn and another to be basically obsessed with and building a collection of a specific person that is also his student."
"It is very inappropriate and you don't really know what other contact or advances he has made toward her. I would definitely confront him about it."
"Not sure if I could get over it but every relationship is different and it's up to you and what your personal moral boundaries are. Good luck." – nobigdeal45
"I'd also try to talk to Kate about it. Does she know that one of her teachers has a borderline obsession with her?"
"Given that he's talking to her through her sex work snapchat rather than her personal, I doubt that there's an actual affair going on (though it's still possible, of course)."
"I'd look at the snapchat name of his account to see if it's anything that can be associated with him. Not a sex worker myself, but I've talked to sex workers who use snapchat and they said that most of their messages are just text, if if it is a picture, it's of their d*ck and not of their face."
"Damn OP, I hope you and Kate get away from him." – kesari99
Some were curious as to how he managed to locate her site, but this user said speculating was irrelevant and "a waste of time."
"It doesn't seem like it matters how he ended up paying a student for pornography, he is paying a student for pornography."
"That's way across a line regardless of the path taken to get there. Getting 'to the bottom of it' seems like a waste of time, it's shady as f'k whatever the details."
"What seems more important is consequences." – ColdRedLight
"What makes sense, is that he developed a crush on Kate."
"Since he knows her last name because of the class roster, he probably began to indulge his crush on her by searching her up on google or Facebook, and then came across her cam site."
"It's probably a crush that has gone too far. You know your husband best, is he a logical well controlled man? Is he irrational and impulsive? That can help you answer a few of your questions." – moongirllovespizza
"I'm wondering why so many people are focused on how he found her account— did he overhear it, did he have a crush and so he looked her up, maybe she told him about it directly— when to me, it mostly about him having nudes of his student on his phone. His STUDENT."
"The power imbalance is one thing, the fact she probably doesn't even know takes it to a whole other level of disturbing. Then on top of that, he actually downloaded them into a folder. On his phone."
"I think therapy is a good suggestion because if I were you, I would need it so that when I do approach him, I can be more calm." – longlegstrawberry
In an update, the OP said that she planned to notify the university administration.
"Regardless of whether she consented to making the content, I don't feel like it's ethical to grade someone you pay and at the very least I don't want to be responsible for grading Kate in the future."
However, her decision to report her husband spawned much debate.
A couple of users invoked Title IX of the Education Amendments Act of 1972, a federal law stating that:
"No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance."
People argued in favor of or against the OP filing a report.
"Having taken Title IX training multiple times (I'm a grad student and TAs are mandatory reporters) I would report this to the Title IX office."
"We can't be sure there was a violation based on the information we have but it's definitely a potentially inappropriate situation that may need further investigation."
"I would sure as f'k not want it to turn out later that there was something worse going on and I didn't do anything."
"So I would go to a Title IX coordinator and explain the situation without using any names or identifying information so we can decide together how to proceed." – AcabAlabAjab
"Because she is obligated to report it? That's how Title IX works. When it comes to a teacher and student, 'she's 18' doesn't cut it anymore." – ML_Yav
The following users suggested she carefully consider thinking things through before making an emotional decision.
"On what grounds though?"
"I'm not trying to defend the guy but this could affect the girl too believe or not. Not all schools work in the favor of the student for title 9 and they could have her leave school due to the investigation. I've seen it done. As well it could affect OP's job!"
"The OP NEEDS to talk to the husband before reporting anything. The girl isn't doing anything illegal unless she is underaged and although creepy the guy can be a customer." – Poetryisalive
"Why would she report this? Correct me if I'm wrong but if she's using a cam site and she's over 18, although problematic he isn't doing anything wrong. She needs to confront him first about the obsession before the school comes into this." – Poetryisalive
"The only grounds to report is if the university has a policy regarding relationships between a student and teacher but even that is a stretch since there is no proof if anything between the two except him owning public pictures of a girl on the internet that look exactly like a college student of his." – DaPrincePlays
"Don't let emotion guide you here, you could end up jobless and in legal trouble if you don't follow the right procedures in your position."
"He doesn't love you if he's willing to do this to both you and the student at his age and position."
"If he cared about you, he would've at least considered the risk to you from doing this." – sciencefiction97
Reporting this could potentially ruin Kate as well.
"While to OP it may not seem most important right now, to Kate who is likely innocent in all of this it is huge, and potentially life altering." – Eddy_K24
The OP cleared things up regarding Kate.
"I think there was some confusion. I wrote that I didn't want Kate to get outted in the process of me leaving my husband or telling the school, not that I was considering outting Kate as revenge."
"No, I am not 'outing' Kate or putting her on blast. I'm not sure how so many people got that out of what I wrote."
"I am reporting my husband for inappropriate behaviour with a student and asking for her to be moved from my class due to a possible conflict of interests."
"Doing porn as a student isn't against the rules and she's not getting punished."
Rather than giving advice, some were appalled and shared the OP's disgust of the husband's pornographic obsession.
"It is completely f'king inappropriate for him to be looking at porn of one of his students."
"You should tell him you're disgusted and appalled. He should be seeking to keep his relationship with her professional and respectful; you do not f'king do that by deliberately curating a pornographic gallery of someone." – HatsAndTopcoats
"Having porn is not cheating."
"Having a fake account so you can perv and hit on your student is." – somerandomshmo
Here are a couple of suggested scenarios for confronting the husband.
"You decide if you want to break up with him or not over it."
"It's frankly disgusting that he is doing this and he should know better. Look guys like porn, but doing this kind of sketch sh*t, setting a password, nah."
"Start deciding if it's couples counseling/therapy or a divorce. Either way time to confront him." – OutlandishCloth
So here's what I'd do. Sit across the table from him. Say 'I have a feeling you might lie but I'm giving you the chance to tell me everything now.' See what he says." – bakerbabe126
Everyone can agree that this is not something the OP should ignore and that it is time for a serious discussion.