9 Signs You Can't Trust Your Partner

Updated on January 10, 2018
Filip Stojkovski profile image

I'm a computer programmer and game developer who is also deeply curious about the arts, philosophy, health, and psychology.

Trust is an important foundation for a good relationship. Often people lack trust because of negative experiences, when someone close in their life breaks their trust. Aside from past experiences, however, a lack of trust in some people is justified.

Having an untrustworthy partner can be very painful and can diminish your self-confidence. That’s why it’s best to recognize in time that someone can’t be trusted, saving yourself a lot of pain and frustration. Here are some signs to look out for:

1. They Have Already Cheated on You or in Previous Relationships

The famous saying 'once a cheater, always a cheater' is true more often than not. People who are not able to control themselves and end up cheating usually remain that way in every relationship. And if you think it’s easy to change a cheater, you are probably wasting your time and energy.

2. They Frequently Seem Distant and Spacey

When your partner is distant and lost in thought it means their thoughts are occupied with something they don’t want to share with you. Of course, that doesn't necessarily mean they are cheating on you, they may just be hiding some kind of important problem from you, that they don’t want to share for some reason. However, being always distant and unwilling to talk about problems is not good for any relationship and you shouldn't be ok with such behavior from your partner.

3. They Change or Cancel Plans at the Last Minute

If your partner often changes plans, it means they have to adapt their schedule to some events that occur unexpectedly. A person who changes plans could just be an indecisive person about what they want to do with their time (not necessarily cheating), but it's also often a sign they have alternative plans with someone else on the side.

4. They Spend a Lot of Time on Their Phone

Not everyone who is a 'phone addict' and spends a lot of time chatting\texting is a cheater, but that behavior indicates they give a lot of time to people apart from their partner. Some people are just naturally more social and spend more time online and on social media, but if your partner would rather spend time on social media than with you, it can be big sign they can’t be trusted.

5. They Avoid Certain Places or People With Great Effort

Has your partner been stubborn about not going to certain places and meeting with certain people? This can be caused by many things. Your partner may honestly not like some places or people. But often, they do this because they are hiding something from you and they don’t want to be seen with you, by some people or in some places.

6. They Don’t Want You to Meet Their Friends

There could be a few reasons why your partner doesn't want you to meet their friends. The reason may be that they are too afraid\jealous to introduce you to someone of the opposite gender. Sometimes the reason is that they are afraid your friends will reveal something they are trying to hide from you.

7. You Found Out They Have More Than One Phone

Having more than one phone doesn't necessarily mean someone is cheating. It may be that the person’s job requires them to have more than one phone, however if that is the case they should have no reason to hide that from you. Having another phone that you don’t know about is a huge red flag.

8. They Overreact When You Ask Them Questions

Is your partner overly defensive when you ask them questions? Often people get overly defensive when they feel guilty of something. Of course, repetitive questions can be annoying and cause someone to react with anger and irritation, but if your partner overreacts to a simple non-accusatory question with defensiveness it can be a sign they feel guilty about something.

9. You Have Been Told by Your Own Close Friends That They Are Cheating on You

Of course you shouldn't immediately trust someone when they tell you your partner is cheating on you, but when your close friends (that you trust) tell you that, you need to be careful. If your close friends, who have had good intentions for you your whole life, try to warn you about your partner, they usually mean well. That doesn't mean you should jump to conclusions immediately, but take their word in consideration.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

Questions & Answers

  • I once caught my wife staring at another guy, why?

    Don't jump to quick conclusions, but take a note of that. Men in most cultures are more direct and communicate interests more clearly then women. Although they may hide it most of the time, it's just a natural and biological thing to feel attraction at some moments. However it is more important how they direct that energy, their goals and ideas for the current relationship. For a mature enough girl, those will be just brief moments, and it's better not to make big deal of it. Developing deep quality communication and connection based on understanding is the ultimate solution.


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    • profile image


      23 months ago

      I totally agree with your comments on this subject Thumb up for Dashingscorpio. You should write a book or something.


    • dashingscorpio profile image


      2 years ago from Chicago

      I would also add if every time you walk into a room they quickly shut down their laptop or phone can be another sign.

      As for having cheated in past relationships I believe you have to consider how long ago that was along with the circumstances and their age at that time.

      "The famous saying 'once a cheater, always a cheater' is more often than not, true." Is usually a defense mechanism.

      People say this in order to protect themselves from trusting.

      If a smoker can quit smoking, a drinker can quit drinking, and a drug user can quit using drugs then it seems ridiculous to believe someone who cheated on someone at age 18 is "doomed to be a cheater" for the rest of their life! Logically that makes no sense.

      The truth of the matter is cheating and monogamy are (choices) one makes and not a part of one's DNA.

      There are three basic reasons why people (don't) cheat.

      1. They're "in love".

      2. They don't want to risk blowing their relationship.

      3. They know how hurt they would be if their mate cheated.

      Last but not least these day people are fairly loose with what constitutes cheating. They go from the obvious such as having sex with someone outside of an exclusive relationship to flirting with someone on social media or sexting with someone around the world they'll never meet in person.

      Everyone has their own definition for cheating.

      However a lot of people are quick to claim someone is cheating on them when they aren't even in a relationship!

      In other words they never had a discussion about being a "couple" or being "exclusive". Instead they simply made an assumption the person they've been on a few dates with isn't dating other people.

      Cheating generally involves lying/deception and secrets. However if one isn't (in a relationship) they might consider their activities when they're not with you to be their private or personal business.


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