Relationships go through ups and downs. Sometimes they go through long stretches where everything is seemingly perfect, while other times they're characterized by dark periods when it feels like absolutely everything is falling apart. During those dark periods, it's possible that one partner or another will start to wonder if there's something else wreaking havoc on the relationship. Is he having problems at work? Is she struggling with the new responsibilities? Is he having a hard time staying at home? Is she having an affair? If you start to wonder if there are signs your partner is having an affair, there are a few things to look for that will help you come to an answer.
It might be easy to jump to conclusions if you think it's possible that your partner is having an affair. It's important to remember, however, that exhibiting typical signs of an affair doesn't mean they are having one. Similarly, it's possible that your partner doesn't exhibit any of these signs, but could still be engaging in an affair. Either way, knowing the classic signs of cheating could ultimately make things better for you down the road. So you yourself a favor and learn the classic signs of an affair before you're in too deep.
1. You Just Have A Feeling
Intuition is a tricky thing. You don’t want to give it too much power and spend your life feeling overly suspicious if there’s no reason to be, but there are also definitely times when you want to trust what it’s telling you. In an interview with Woman’s Day, Tony DeLorenzo, owner of All State Investigations and author of Warning Signs: How to Know If Your Partner Is Cheating — and What To Do About It, said that your instincts can tell you when something isn’t right or if an affair is happening. It can be scary to trust your intuition, especially when it’s telling you something you don’t want to hear, but don’t just dismiss it out of hand. When you know, you know.
2. They're Putting Extra Effort Into Their Appearance
Sometimes it's nice when your partner tries a little harder to pull themselves together or get a little gussied up for date night. But when they're putting in extra effort for a day at the office, you might start to suspect that something's up. According to MomJunction, changing up their look, trying out new products, or hitting the gym can be one of the earliest signs that your partner is having an affair, especially if it happens all of a sudden. It could be nothing, though, other than just simply deciding to make a change, so don't jump to conclusions.
3. You Two Aren't Spending Much Time Together
You don't need to do everything together all of the time. That being said, if you spend far more time alone than you do together, it could be a sign that all is not well. In an interview for the previously-mentioned piece from Woman's Day, private investigator Danine Manette said that initially, the person with whom they're having the affair may be OK with only seeing them sporadically. As time goes on, however, they will likely demand more time, which could be why your partner's never around. Additionally, your partner may feel guilty about their affair when they're around you, which is why they're trying to stay away. There are lots of reasons, however, other than an affair, that could explain bouts of busyness, so don't immediately assume they're cheating.
4. Your Sex Life Has Drastically Changed
You might assume that your sex life would take a serious hit if your partner is cheating — and it might — but it could actually improve. In an interview with Women's Health, psychotherapist Ginnie Love said that if the affair hasn't gotten physical yet, your partner may channel that desire into your relationship. The sign here is more the unexplained change from whatever had been happening before. If there's a concrete reason that your sex life has changed, then it might not pinpoint to an affair.
5. They Have New Credit Cards In Their Name Only
If you two don't have joint accounts, this probably isn't all that suspicious. But if you do and they open new ones in their name, it could be a red flag. In an interview with Cafe Mom, divorce attorney Marilyn Stowe said that this could be a sign that they're spending money on the affair, particularly if they bank or make payments online or the statements go to another address.
6. They Get Defensive
In an interview with Woman's Day, psychologist Dr. Jennifer Oikle said that if your partner gets defensive when you start asking questions, it could be a giveaway that they're having an affair because, if they weren't, the accusations would seem so preposterous that they'd laugh at them. Still, if they seem upset by some of your questioning, it might not be because they're having an affair, so try to keep your cool.
7. They Avoid Get-Togethers With Friends And Family
In a piece for Your Tango, licensed professional counselor Dr. Michael Howard wrote that if your partner either skips social gatherings or only makes a temporary appearance, it could be a sign that they're having an affair. Again, there could be other explanations for why they're so busy, but affairs tend to affect the social lives of those engaging in them.
8. They're Not Treating You The Same Way
There are all sorts of things that can affect someone's attitude, but a sudden, unexplained change in attitude could attitude be a sign that something is wrong. According to the aforementioned article from Woman's Day, it's often not really about you, it's about the other person with whom they're having the affair. Oikle told Woman's Day that verbalizing what they find lacking in you helps them justify the affair in their own mind.
9. Their Tech Use Changes
If they were never really interested in their smartphone, but now they have it practically permanently attached to their hand, it could be a sign that something's not right, as Love told Women's Health in the previously-mentioned article. Again, this might not mean that they're definitely having an affair, but if you're already suspicious, it could be something for which to watch.