This is one of the things that I don't really know the proper name for, because I've never heard anyone say it, but I know how to explain it.

Let's say a toddler is searching through your backpack, then you tell him:

Stop -blank- my things!

Can you guys provide more than one expression?


6 Answers 6


This question seems to be asking about two actions. One is someone 'going through' a backpack. The other one is 'going through the things found in a backpack'.

Stop going through my things

fits the second case.

As does the expression you provided:

Stop searching through my stuff

User3169 has provided a highly idiomatic expression:

Stop digging through my things

CopperKettle has provided the useful verb rummage (which is also a noun):

Stop rummaging (through) my backpack

Also, stop messing with my things/stuff is similar, but it is broader in meaning.

You can also say

Get your hands out of my backpack

Leave my stuff alone

Find your own toys to play with

For variety and vocabulary expansion, you might want to be aware of

Stop rifling through my things

but rifle as a verb means to go through something quickly in order to steal something, and we wouldn't generally use that for a toddler.

Note: I have not used a period after any of the italicized examples, because I want to leave open the fact that you can add , toddler's name or something else the end of each one.

Stop messing with my stuff, lovey dovey.


Stop digging through my things!

For a person (older than a toddler anyway), also:

Stop snooping in my things!

  • Can you use stuff instead of things?
    – Schwale
    Commented Dec 7, 2015 at 16:59
  • I don't understand the age concern.
    – tchrist
    Commented Dec 7, 2015 at 17:06
  • 1
    @tchrist It is because snooping indicates intentional searching for something. I doubt a toddler would do this, rather it is just due to curiosity.
    – user3169
    Commented Dec 7, 2015 at 17:09
  • @Ale you can use stuff, but since it is a mass noun, it would refer to all the things as one unit. It removes the notion of going from one item to another.
    – user20792
    Commented Dec 7, 2015 at 17:22
  • +1 for both, powerful and to the point, better than the accepted answer.
    – xpt
    Commented Jun 16, 2016 at 10:36

rifling - the act or process of ransacking (or robbing). Definition #2 at dictionary.com.

  • -1 because the word is already in the community answer
    – user20792
    Commented Dec 8, 2015 at 5:47

Stop snooping around. I've heard it used mainly in the context of infidelity, e. g. going through someone's messages. But it sounds appropriate here as well.


You can say:

Stop rooting around my personal belongings!

root around is a phrasal verb that is defined by Cambridge as:

to ​search for something, ​especially by ​looking through other things

And gives the following example as to its usage:

She was ​rooting around in her ​drawer for a ​pencil.

But I have heard it used in the context that you mention (and a quick Google search for "stop rooting around my" would point to many examples in that same vein).


If the person is of questionable character, the verb "lurp" would be acceptable. "Hey dirtbag, there will be no lurping through my backpack while I'm in the other room".

  • 5
    I've never heard that used before (AmE) - do you have a reference that isn't Urban Dictionary? Slang is fun, but you should probably explain that it's pretty casual.
    – ColleenV
    Commented Dec 8, 2015 at 2:21

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