Deborah is a writer, healer, and teacher. Her goal is to help people live their best lives every day by sharing her joy and love of life.
What? I was texting work.
Men get a bad rap. When people think of a cheating spouse, they usually imagine a husband, caught red-handed with his mistress. But a man doesn't cheat alone. When a man cheats on a relationship, there is usually a woman involved.
With more than half of all marriages ending in divorce, it should come as no surprise that someone is cheating, somewhere. According to recent statistics, between 30-60 percent of married individuals in the United States will cheat on their spouse at some point in the marriage. It is any wonder, then, that so many marriages end on a sour note?
When a marriage or relationship encounters difficult times, the risk of one partner cheating increases. A person is more likely to seek solace in the arms of another if they are feeling misunderstood, unheard, unloved, or unappreciated. As the relationship deteriorates, the desire to move on and create new bonds grows stronger.
While historically, men have taken the rap for cheating, women are becoming more and more likely to have infidelity issues. As more women enter the work force and spend time with other adults, they can also develop intimate relationships outside their marriages. It is not only husbands who are caught in office romances. Women are just as likely to develop extra-marital relationships as men.
Most people do not enter into a relationship with the intention of cheating. Often, infidelity is the result of a situation that arises, rather than a planned course of action. There is a lot to be said for staying out of situations that could cause you trouble. The closer to the edge you walk, the more likely it is that you could tumble over into uncharted territory.
Some studies suggest that the more attractive a person is, not only physically, but also emotionally, socially and financially attractive, the more likely they are to cheat. As people become more secure, their attention shifts from survival to enjoyment. They want to expand their horizons and enjoy all that life has to offer. Unfortunately, this might mean your partner is cheating on you.
Below, you'll find tens signs of a cheating partner.
What is cheating, exactly?
It's a grey area as vast as the ocean. There are as many ways to cheat on a partner as there are people who cheat.
When does texting a friend become cheating? Or does it ever? Does cheating include having lunch together or flirting in public? Is cheating limited to sex? Is cheating limited to certain acts, but not others?
What one person may deem appropriate behavior may be completely off base for someone else. There are numerous opportunities to text, to message and to chat with people outside of a relationship. When does that texting become cheating, or does it ever?
Former President Bill Clinton famously said, "I did not have sex with that woman, Monica Lewinsky." Although it was discovered that Bill and Monica did participate in oral sex, perhaps he did not feel like that was actually cheating on his wife. For some people, kissing, fondling and oral sex are all okay, even when married to someone else. They consider it cheating only when they have actual intercourse with the another person.
The person who uses such broad definitions is usually the cheater. The one cheated on usually has a much narrower definition of cheating behavior. It's important for you to know and communicate what you consider to be cheating.
What if your girlfriend is texting her trainer at the gym about non-workout related issues? What if she meets him for drinks? How about if your husband takes his secretary to lunch? What if they share wine? What if your partner has a sexually suggestive phone call or email? What if they send nudes?
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At what point is behavior harmless and when does it become cheating? This is something that you and your partner must decide for your own relationship. Unfortunately, the conversation usually happens after the cheating has already occured.
Is it really cheating?
What are the signs?
Here are ten signs that a person might be cheating in their relationship. Of course, there could be a plausible explanation for any or even all of the following ten signs.
Trust your gut. You know the truth, if you listen to your instincts. Once you determine if your partner is cheating on you, then you have a couple of different options. Decide if it matters to you. If it doesn't matter, drop it and move on.
If it does matter to you, then you can ask your partner. Don't expect an honest answer. Cheaters are deceivers. They will tell you what they think you want to hear. If you have evidence or proof, you can present that. And then you must decide.
Is the cheating a deal breaker? Only you and your partner can decide if your relationship is worth saving in spite of their cheating behavior.
Top ten signs of a cheater
10: She texts at weird times and in strange places. If your partner suddenly begins texting at all hours of the day and night, then it could be a sign of cheating. Staying up late at night? Getting up extra early and getting right on the phone? What about texting in the bathroom, and coming out laughing?
These could be signs that your partner is cheating. Does he get up and leave the room to text? Does he hide his phone and act secretive when he texts? Maybe you've noticed a new phone or a second phone, and your partner says it's for work.
Texting has become an easy way for people to cheat on their partners. It is easy to enter into lengthy and intimate conversations with someone other than your spouse, while texting.
Texting, messaging and chatting allow people to say things to each other they would never say in person. It allows space for false intimacy to develop quickly and easily.
Not only sexting, with suggestive texts, but sending nearly nude, completely nude and even pornographic pictures and videos is easier than ever. The ease of sharing pictures makes intimacy even more likely.
Once an intimate texting relationship develops, it is a slippery slope to becoming physically intimate.
9: He changes the password on everything and becomes secretive. You used to share the same password for every app and website. Now, passwords have changed, and he has a screen lock on his phone. He doesn't text while in the same room, and if his phone buzzes, he jumps up and leaves to answer it. Now that you think about it, he has put the phone on silent, and keeps it in his pocket at all times.
Her Facebook page, which used to be permanently opened on the computer, is now shut down ever time she uses it. When you walk up, she quickly closes the page she was just typing on.
There are so many ways to sneak around with technology. Does she have two cell phones? What about different email accounts? Technology has paved the way for a cheating partner to conceal his conversations.
8: She suddenly listens to the strangest music. Musical tastes can change as we grow and change, but when your wife suddenly starts listening to jazz and develops a passion without you, it could be a sign of something amiss.
When your boyfriend starts humming unusual music and doesn't share his new tastes with you, it could be a sign.
Of course, trying new music could be growth. Perhaps you saw a video or heard a song on a movie you watched, so you Googled the band and found something you liked. It could also be that your partner has a friend, and she likes jazz. He starts listening to it without you, because it reminds him of her.
This isn't only limited to music, but if she develops new tastes in movies, actors or books, she may be influenced by someone new. And if she is humming a song, which stops as soon as you walk in the room, then perhaps it is something more than her new found love of classical music.
When your partner begins spending time with someone new, they pick up on different types of music, books and movies. They might try to get you to listen to or watch something completely out of left field. While new tastes in entertainment might be nothing other than exploring, pay attention.
7: He seems to be acting differently. Your partner had a predictable pattern; up early for a run, hit the shower, go to work, call you for lunch, head home.
Now, things are different. He goes to the gym and is gone for a couple of hours in the morning. He has to work through lunch every day. He comes home later and later, and is too exhausted to hang out with you.
Maybe she changed up her exercise routine to boost her metabolism, as she claims. But if your girl has gone from working out in the morning to late night visits to the gym, it could be a sign of a cheating heart.
Instead of wanting to spend time with you on the weekend, she has "plans with friends" that don't include you. She wants to go to the movies with her girlfriends, or she has a lot more girl's night out's than usual. These could be signs of a cheating partner.
When your partner changes their daily routine significantly, or becomes obtuse about their plans, it could be because they are waiting to hear from their lover about how they will spend some time together.
6. She changes her appearance significantly. Your girlfriend is suddenly sporting a new, short hairdo. She has also begun wearing cute little lacy things, that she never wore before. She used to be a cotton girl, and now is wearing lace thongs.
You notice your husband is losing weight, watching what he eats, and shaving every day. It used to be, you could hardly get him in the shower once a day, but now, he jumps in as soon as he gets home. Not only that, but his nether region is sporting some new manscaping.
Sudden changes in physical appearance could indicate a cheating partner. When your wife wants to surprise her lover, she might try out some new lingerie. Or if your husband gets in the shower as soon as he walks in the door, he could be trying to rinse off the smell of his mistress.
Be wary of changes in appearance, apparel and scent, as they may indicate a problem. When your partner is on the prowl, they will up the ante by improving their outward physical appearance.
5. Sudden mood changes seem the norm. You are beginning to think you are crazy. He goes from sweet and lovey to crazy angry and frustrated for no apparent reason.
When you ask her if she wants to talk, she blows you off, saying you don't understand anything.
If your partner is looking for an excuse to leave for an hour or two, they might pick a fight so they can "spend time alone", while in reality, they are spending time with their lover.
If you notice that he is suddenly all over you, kissing and wanting to make out, that too could indicate he feels guilty and is trying to make it right.
When your partner begins acting differently, whether they are picking fights for no reason, or acting extra loving and unusually affectionate, then there could be a problem looming.
What if you caught her cheating?
4. Your partner begins trying all kinds of new things. He used to be a strictly "missionary position" kind of guy, but lately your boyfriend has taken a walk on the wild side. He's doing things to you that you've only dreamed about.
Yes, he could have read a "how to please your wife" book. Or, his new mistress may have taught him a few tricks. When he starts to vary his interests in bed, it could be a sign that things are heating up elsewhere.
If she starts doing things you've always wished she would do, you might wonder why. Not only in bed, but in life, if your girl begins to crave adventure and excitement and starts taking unusual risks, she could be seeing someone else.
We all change as we grow, but if you notice significant departures from normal behavior, especially if there is no discussion about new adventures, then there could be a problem.
3. Suddenly she's working long hours and hiding her finances. Your wife usually has a predictable work schedule, but lately she's required to attend breakfast meetings and late night work sessions.
In addition, you've always shared a bank account, but you notice that some money is missing. Or you see a bank statement or a new bank app on the computer that is unfamiliar. When you ask him about it, he blows you off, saying it's for work, or for a project.
When you try to call her at the office, she doesn't pick up her phone. And when you text her, she doesn't respond, even though you've seen her jump up from the dinner table to answer a text at other times.
These could indicate that your partner is being unfaithful.
2. He forgets things and sometimes his stories make no sense. Your partner used to tell you all about the people at work. He used to share stories and funny anecdotes. Now he's close-lipped. When he does talk about work, it's always a story about his amazing co-worker who has such a tough life and a jerk of a husband.
Or, she keeps telling you about the guy she works with who knows this and does that, and she suggests you should all hang out sometime.
Sometimes, when he's talking about a movie he's seen or something that happened, he will suddenly get very vague and trail off. Or he knows details about someone or something that seem strangely out of place or intimate
When your partner begins spending time elsewhere, it can be hard for them to remember what is the truth, what is a lie, and what happened between the two of you. He might be recalling a conversation with his lover, as he is talking to you, forgetting that it wasn't you he was talking to. At that point, expect the conversation to trail off to nowhere.
1. Your gut tells you she is cheating. All of the signs in the world may not lead you to believe that your beloved is cheating on you.
What does your gut tell you? Often, we are led to the truth by small cues in behavior. Sometimes, there is a gut feeling that something just isn't right. When this happens, trust your gut.
Your instincts can pick up on subconscious cues to your partners behavior. When someone is cheating, they can't hide it forever. You can ignore it forever, if you choose. But if your instinct tells you something is going on, then it probably is.
So, you've seen the signs. Your gut tells you something is going on. Now what do you do?
You can confront your partner and ask them flat out, if they are cheating on you. Don't expect an honest answer. Even if you ask more than once, chances are, you will not hear the truth. A cheating spouse will lie, not only to protect himself, but also to protect his lover. And, believe it or not, they will also want to protect your feelings.
Although it is hard to believe, an unfaithful partner probably doesn't want to hurt your feelings. Chances are, as the affair began and continued, your partner didn't think about you. Your partner thought about how he was feeling, and how his mistress made him feel.
You could turn into a sleuth, to prove your case. You could try to catch her in the act. Try to figure out how to trace her texts. Follow her after work. Show up at the gym when she says she's there. If you catch her in a lie, she will probably lie more, to cover her lies. Once you have proven your point, the question remains. Now what?
You can do one of two things, when you discover your partner has been unfaithful. You can stay, or you can go. The choice is entirely up to you. Of course, if there are children involved, it becomes more complicated. Chances are, if your partner has cheated on you once, they will probably do it again. Cheating gets easier, it doesn't get harder.
Once they have figured out where they went wrong, they will be extra careful not to get caught the next time. So, unless they have had a huge change of heart, it will be difficult to trust what they say in the future.
So, the thing to do, is determine if the relationship is worth saving, in spite of infidelity. If the answer is yes, then you begin the long road to healing and repairing your relationship. If the answer is no, then it's time to turn your back and walk out the door.
There is no easy recovery from infidelity. Whether you choose to stay or go, the road is difficult. No matter what your partner says, it is not your fault. You did not cause this, not even if you were the worst partner in the entire world. You are not at fault. You did not make them cheat. They chose to cheat. Do not beat yourself up, because there is nothing you could do differently to change your partner.
Go slowly and be gentle with your hurting heart.
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
Question: What if your partner changes their password?
Answer: What do you care? What if you change your password? Why do you need your partner's password? If you trust your partner, then you won't need to check up on their phone or computer. Give your partner the space and respect that you would expect.
Question: What does it mean when my partner changes a contact name in her phone?
Answer: If a person changes the name of a contact, it usually indicates they are trying to hide something.
Question: I asked my partner if he was cheating on multiple occasions. Each time he’s always said no and he’s even laughed at the last time I asked, saying it was a ridiculous idea. Since then I’ve read this article, and it brought my suspicions back up again. Does this mean he’s cheating? Or does it mean I’m worrying too much?
Answer: Do you have any indications that he is cheating on you? What are the things that lead you to believe this? Is it just a hunch? Does he go out after work and stay out late? Is he gone on the weekends? Does he ignore your calls and texts? Gather together what you have as evidence and show him. If you don't really know and you are just suspicious or jealous, maybe you need to examine the root of your own jealousy.
Question: Is it a sign of cheating if my significant other has a password?
Answer: No, it is not bad to have a password. It protects your phone or other accounts from being used by unauthorized people.
Question: Every time my partner and I are on the phone I can hear a buzzing from the other side quite frequently! Also after a certain hour at night it looks like the connection phone it’s not really the same! Cheating?
Answer: These do not indicate cheating. Rather, it sounds like a bad phone connection. Do you have other reasons to believe your partner is cheating on you? If these are the only signs, then I'd assume they are not cheating. If you have other reasons to think so, maybe you should have an honest conversation. Ask if they are cheating.
Question: What do you think about a wife that hangs on to her male neighbor when she is drunk but not her husband?
Answer: That behavior is typical of drunk people. She's probably not cheating on you. She probably likes him though.
If it bothers you, then don't hang out with the male neighbor when she's drinking. Or, try being honest and tell her that it makes you uncomfortable when she acts that way.
Question: My boyfriend doesn't say I love you as much as he used to, and I just feel like something is wrong, how do I approach him about it?
Answer: Well, if you love him and you are concerned, then say that. Tell him honestly how you feel. Then, when he responds, listen to what he says. Notice what he does. Does he still hug you and kiss you and treat you like he loves you? If he says there is nothing wrong, maybe he's telling the truth, and there is nothing wrong.
Question: What does it mean when your spouse moves out but doesn't call, text, and not wanting to have sex as much and when we do she rushes it? Does my spouse's behavior mean she has someone else?
Answer: I think your first statement says everything you need to know. Your spouse has moved out. Clearly she does not want to be with you. Why are you not getting divorced? If she has moved out and moved on, then she is probably using you for whatever you provide, whether its finances, friendship or childcare. Does this relationship give you what you want and need from a marriage? Closely examine what you are getting from this relationship. From the outside, it seems like you are being used.
© 2014 Deborah Demander