Infidelity is a sensitive and complex topic that can cause a lot of pain and heartbreak. While some people may be able to easily detect signs of infidelity in their partner, others may not be able to do so. In this article, we’ll explore the common signs of infidelity and discuss what you can do if you suspect your partner may be cheating.
Changes in Behavior
One of the most common signs of infidelity is changes in behavior. This can be anything from changes in routine to suspicious phone habits. Let’s dive into all the different kinds of changes in behavior you might see.
Changes in Routine
Changes in routine can include your partner suddenly staying out later than usual or spending more time away from home. They may be vague about where they are going or who they are spending time with. If they used to come home at a certain time every day and now they’re consistently coming home late without a good reason, this could be a sign that something is going on.
Emotional distance is another common sign of infidelity. Your partner may seem less interested in spending time with you or talking to you about their day. They may be less affectionate or less attentive to your needs. They may also seem distracted or preoccupied when you are together.
Suspicious Phone Habits
Suspicious phone habits can also be a sign that your partner is cheating. If they are suddenly more protective of their phone or are taking it with them everywhere they go, it could be a sign that they are hiding something. They may be deleting their text messages or clearing their call history more frequently. If they are always on their phone and seem to be texting someone constantly, this could be a sign that they are communicating with their lover.
Not Wanting to Go to Certain Places
If your partner all of a sudden has no desire to go to a certain public place that you usually go to, this could be a sign of infidelity. For example, let’s say you guys always go to a particular coffee shop together, but all of a sudden, they have no desire or are adamantly against going to that coffee shop. This may be a sign that they go to this particular place with their new lover and/or may believe they will run into their new lover at this place.
Asking or Accusing You of Cheating
Sometimes, people that are cheating may be more inclined to accuse their own partner of cheating as a defense mechanism or projection, or maybe because they’re simply more paranoid (and realize how easy it can be).
If your partner is suddenly spending more time away from home or missing out on certain events (i.e., family parties, meet up with friends, work events), it could be a sign that they are cheating.
In addition to changes in behavior, physical signs of infidelity can include unexplained marks or scratches and changes in sexual behavior.
Unexplained Marks or Scratches
One common physical sign of infidelity is unexplained marks or scratches on their body. These marks may be in places that are difficult to explain, such as the neck or back. They may also have bruises or bite marks that they can’t explain. If your partner suddenly starts wearing more clothing than usual, such as long-sleeved shirts or high-necked tops, it could be a sign that they are trying to hide these marks.
Changes in Sexual Behavior
Another physical sign of infidelity is changes in sexual behavior. If your partner is suddenly more interested in sex or is trying new things in bed, it could be a sign that they are cheating. They may be learning new sexual techniques from their lover or may be trying to make up for the guilt they feel about cheating on you. On the flip side, they may also be less interested in sex or maybe avoiding it altogether. This could be a sign that they are getting their sexual needs met elsewhere.
Changes in Physical Appearance
If your partner has a sudden interest in weight loss, building muscle, new hairstyles, new clothes, or other attributes about their physical appearance, it may mean they have a new lover they are trying to impress.
There may also be some financial signs that can allude to infidelity, including secretive spending and unexplained charges.
One common financial sign of infidelity is secretive spending. If your partner is suddenly spending more money than usual or is being secretive about their spending, it could be a sign that they are cheating. They may be using the money to take their lover on dates or buy them gifts. They may also be making purchases that they don’t want you to know about, such as expensive lingerie or hotel rooms.
Another financial sign of infidelity is unexplained charges on their credit card or bank statement. If your partner has charges for hotels, restaurants, or other activities that they wouldn’t normally participate in, it could be a sign that they are cheating. They may be using their credit card to pay for these activities so that you don’t find out.
Social signs of infidelity can include being secretive about social media and spending more time with friends.
Being Secretive About Social Media
One common social sign of infidelity is being secretive about social media. If your partner is suddenly being secretive about their social media accounts or is deleting messages or photos, it could be a sign that they are cheating. They may be using social media to communicate with their lover and don’t want you to find out.
Posting More or Less on Social Media
Posting more or less on social media may also indicate something is up. For example, if they start posting fewer photos than usual of you and them it may be because they don’t want their new lover to see it. Or maybe they start posting more photos of you and them out of guilt or as a way to deflect the accusations of cheating.
Spending More Time With Friends
Another social sign of infidelity is spending more time with friends. If your partner is suddenly spending more time with their friends or is going out more often without you, it could be a sign that they are cheating. They may be using their friends as an excuse to spend time with their lover.
What To Do If You Suspect Your Partner is Cheating
If you suspect that your partner may be cheating, it’s important to talk to them about your concerns and not let them boil up inside. It can be difficult to approach this topic, but it’s important to communicate openly and honestly with your partner. Here are some steps you can take if you suspect your partner is cheating:
Before confronting your partner, it may be helpful to gather evidence that supports your suspicions. This could include writing down examples of changes in behavior, unexplained charges on credit card statements, or any other evidence that you feel is relevant. However, it’s important to respect your partner’s privacy and not invade their personal space without their consent. So be careful with what evidence you take.
Plan your approach
When you’re ready to talk to your partner, it’s important to plan your approach. Choose a time and place where you can talk in private and without interruptions. Try to approach the conversation calmly, respectfully, and with curiosity, even if you feel angry or hurt. Plus, if you aren’t certain that they are cheating, you definitely don’t want to come off as accusatory if this is not true.
When you talk to your partner, it’s important to be honest about your suspicions. Explain why you’re concerned and what evidence you have gathered. Be open to hearing their side of the story, but also be clear about your boundaries and what you’re willing to tolerate in your relationship. Remember to do your best not to interrupt, even if you really want to, since it’s important to fully hear out their experience before jumping to a conclusion.
Dealing with infidelity can be very difficult, so it’s important to seek support if you need it. This could include talking to a therapist, joining a support group, or confiding in a trusted friend or family member.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about cheating
Q: What should I do if I suspect my partner is cheating?
A: If you suspect your partner is cheating, it’s important to talk to them about your concerns and try to work through your issues together. If you can’t resolve your issues on your own, consider seeing a therapist or terminating the relationship.
Q: Is it possible to forgive infidelity?
A: Forgiving infidelity is a personal decision that depends on the individuals involved and the circumstances of the infidelity. Some couples are able to move past infidelity and rebuild their relationship, while others are not.
Q: How can I prevent infidelity in my relationship?
A: Preventing infidelity involves being honest and open with your partner, communicating effectively, and being attentive to each other’s needs. However, sometimes, it’s not preventable, and it’s simply a personal issue of the cheater.
Q: Is infidelity always a dealbreaker?
A: Infidelity is a serious breach of trust, but it’s not always a dealbreaker. Whether or not you decide to stay with your partner after infidelity depends on your personal values and the circumstances of the infidelity.
Q: If my partner exhibits one of the signs of cheating above, does it for sure mean they are cheating?
A: Of course not. Sometimes, people’s behaviors change, and there is simply no real malicious intent behind it. Remember to look for patterns instead of one-off instances.
David F Khalili is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, board-certified sexologist, author of Mental Health Workbook for Men, founder of Rouse Relational Wellness, a boutique sex and relationship therapy center serving San Francisco and all of California, and recently started Rouse Academy, an online learning platform to address sex and anxiety. You can learn more about David’s practice at rousetherapy.com.