There are many signs that you can look for to find out if your spouse is cheating on you. Communication, observation and research are ways to discover if your mate is unfaithful. One sign alone might not be enough to determine if your husband is cheating, just as catching your wife being secretive about one thing doesn't mean she's having an affair. Putting all the clues together and asking your spouse is the best way to determine whether cheating is going on.
A lack of communication escalates cheating. Experts recommend tactfully approaching your spouse directly to ask about suspected cheating, if you feel something is up. They also encourage you to approach the subject before using other means to find out if your spouse is cheating.
Good timing is critical to broaching the sensitive subject. For example, do it when you are both in good frames of mind, not when you are stressed, tired, rushed or around children.
Shift the focus to yourself, rather than your partner. Let your spouse know that you are suspicious or worried, or tell him about what has made you uneasy. Ask him to help set you at ease on the matter. Your spouse might still become angry or defensive, especially if he is cheating. Let him know that your concerns merit the truth for your peace of mind, and consider speaking with a therapist if you can't get a yes or no.
The Phone Is the First Place
Your spouse's cellphone or smartphone is a primary source for cheating clues. Technology has made extramarital affairs easier to carry out, but it has also made them easy to detect if your spouse slips up, or you're tech savvy enough to search the phone correctly.
Review your spouse's phone for call history. Also check messaging and video chat apps for suspicious contacts. Look for unfamiliar names, phone numbers and unusual call hours, frequency of calls or durations. Numerous calls to and from numbers you don't recognize and early, late or work-hour calls could be a sign of someone trying to communicate with your spouse when you're not likely to be around.
If you can establish suspicious calling patterns, gather the questionable phone numbers and conduct research online using reverse phone lookup sites. A reverse phone search allows you to type a phone number into a web page, such as Whitepages or one of many free or fee-based sites. These allow you to retrieve the phone user's name and possibly her address or approximate location. There are also apps for your smartphone that allow you to conduct a reverse phone lookup.
Facebook also gives you the option of finding a Facebook user by her phone number. Just type the number into the search box. If she has connected it to her Facebook profile, she will come up, but if she's opted to keep her number private, her name will not appear.
Beware that your spouse might be wise to ways of concealing his cheating on his phone. He likely won't type out a person's full name when he is trying to conceal her identity or existence. Look for contacts and calls identified only by initials or first names. He might also mask a lover's phone number by saving it under a familiar contact's entry.
Text messages, voicemails and emails are other sources of infidelity information that you can search on a spouse's phone. Check for deleted and trashed correspondence, as these can remain in the folders for weeks after they've supposedly been disposed of. Also check for secondary messaging apps such as SnapChat, which allows users to send temporary texts messages, videos and photos.
Look for apps on your spouse's phone such as KeepSafe and Private Photo Vault, which let you store photos and videos under password protection and encryption. App hiders, such as Hide It Pro, help your spouse keep apps they don't want you to know about, out of sight when you search the phone. You can also discover apps that your spouse "nested," or hid within folders, on the phone by using the iOS search feature or "Show Hidden Apps" feature on Android.
Other Clues That Point to Cheating
Suddenly secretive, unusual hours and changes in other behavior are also indicative of cheating. Look out for these other common clues in your spouse's routine:
- Leaving home earlier and more frequently, or arriving later than usual
- Longer or more frequent business travel (without you)
- Excessive work, overtime
- Less communicative with you
- Less interested in family gatherings
- Unexplained spending, secret accounts, bills and letters
- Extra, atypical primping, grooming or showering
- Less affectionate or physically intimate
- More combative, evasive or defensive
- Blatantly lies about facts you know to be true
Karina C. Hernandez is a real estate agent in San Diego since 2004. She has a background in mortgage finance and cosmetics and has written home & garden, housing and beauty articles for multiple internet channels over the past 10 years. She has a B.A. in English from UCLA.