Do you have a gut feeling that something is amiss in your marriage? If you do, pay close attention to your spouse’s actions and consider looking for proof of an affair.
At Dame Legal, our divorce lawyers handle cases involving cheating spouses in Hackensack, Union City, and Clifton, New Jersey, as well as at our location in New York City, New York.
Here, we’ll share the quintessential red flags that tell you your spouse may be having an affair with someone and how to identify them.
1. Hiding Their Cell Phone
Your partner’s smartphone can become the most decisive piece of evidence to support your suspicions of their cheating. You might notice they act increasingly overprotective of their phone, carrying it with them everywhere they go and placing it face down when they spend time with you. They also might delete text messages and contacts to hide them from you.
If they spend more time on their phone than talking with you, it could be a sign that they have their attention focused on someone else. If you feel safe doing so, try talking to your partner about how their constant phone use makes you feel unimportant.
Try asking questions like, “who are you texting?” or “why are you hiding your phone?” If they get defensive at your inquiries, this behavior raises a red flag.
We recommend trying to open communication before going through their phone yourself. Your spouse could turn actions like those against you later.
2. Avoiding Your Questions & Calls
If your spouse doesn’t answer your phone calls or always calls you back later, you may start to wonder why. Most people can step away from work to answer a phone call from their spouse. With a lover, on the other hand, you’re likely to stow away your phone until you leave.
Make a mental note of what time of day you call and how often your spouse is unavailable. If you start to notice a trend, such as them never picking up on a Tuesday afternoon, they might be seeing someone else.
Before you make assumptions about your partner, do your research. If they say they were with a friend and you have that person’s contact information, check with that person and see if they corroborate your spouse’s story.
Keep in mind that a cheating partner might gaslight you or accuse you of losing your mind when you question them. They might try to make it seem like you’re the one cheating when in reality, they’re just trying to distract you from their wrongdoing.
3. Overly Emotional to Questions
Approaching your partner for answers may result in emotions running high. If your spouse is hiding something, they might be paranoid and sensitive to questions.
Keep a record of their reactions when you ask them about their strange behavior. Do they get angry or defensive? Do they yell to try and intimidate you or become avoidant? Do they accuse you of prying and not trusting them?
On the contrary, some cheating partners compensate with a calmer attitude and communicate well when they’re cheating. Consider how their emotions and reactions may look different than usual when you bring up the possibility of an affair.
4. Changes in Sex Life
If your partner suddenly wants to stop having sex, this could warn you of an affair, especially if they usually have a high sex drive. While sex isn’t the only way to identify a cheating spouse, pay attention to their past preferences when it comes to sex and compare them to more recent ones.
Do they suddenly want to try different things in bed? They might have different experiences with their lover and try replicating them with you. If your partner tries to pressure you into new sexual practices that make you uncomfortable, they may have learned them from their lover.
Consider your partner’s general attitude toward making love. Are they as romantic in bed as they used to be? Do they only focus on the physical aspects instead of prioritizing your pleasure? Dramatic changes in the bedroom may be cause for concern.
Keep in mind that other factors like stress, medications, and mental or physical health changes can also cause these issues. Other circumstances may cause changes in sex drive and behavior. Consider these changes together with the other warning signs.
5. Different Smells
In movies, we often see a man come home smelling like another woman’s perfume. Sometimes these types of scenes happen in reality, too.
If your spouse smells different coming home than when they leave, it could be a sign that they’ve been with someone else. You may also notice unfamiliar shampoo and soap scents. If your partner comes home freshly showered, but they weren’t at the gym, they might have been with someone else.
6. Special Clothing & Lingerie
Your partner may want to surprise you with new lingerie or clothing. However, combined with other concerns on this list, that could also raise suspicions. They may claim the lingerie is for a special occasion or surprise for you, but if they’ve never worn it before, they may be wearing it for someone else.
Consider whether your partner has stopped putting in effort with their appearance around you. Do they get dressed up when they go out to work or meetings but wear t-shirts with holes for you? If so, it could signal your relationship is becoming less important to them and they’re trying to impress someone else.
7. Secret Emails & Accounts
An email account you’ve never heard of can signal that your spouse is having an affair. Some partners create different email accounts to hide communication with someone. You may receive an email accidentally from a mysterious email account. You might even get locked out of your own email account if your spouse changes the password.
Take note of your spouse’s behavior surrounding their email activity. If your partner turns away their laptop or phone around you, they probably have something to hide. Similarly, be wary if they get defensive when you ask about this secret email account.
8. Suspicious Social Media
These days, most adults have at least one social media profile. People average two to four hours a day browsing Facebook, Instagram, and other social media.
How does your spouse act on social media? Consider things like if they comment on your posts when you tag them in photos. Do they tag you in any posts or post photos of the two of you?
While they might try to keep the relationship private, disengagement on social media can mirror their disinterest in your relationship. Some people are inactive on social media already, but you might notice a change in their activity when they cheat.
Try searching their name and checking to see if any other accounts appear for them. As with the unknown email address, a secret Facebook or Instagram account could signal suspicious behavior.
9. Missing Finances
Married couples often have a joint bank account. However, this can pose a problem if one person starts withdrawing money without telling their partner. If you notice funds disappearing from your shared account, ask your spouse where they went.
Follow up on their stories by asking for receipts, checking the closet for new clothes, or looking at the car for any repairs. Your partner might try to be more discreet by withdrawing cash instead of using a debit card. Withdrawing money can show proof of a cheating spouse, especially if they can’t provide you with a receipt.
10. Constant Lies
After weeks or months of your partner having an affair, you’ll notice that things don’t make sense. Any extramarital relationship involves lying, and maintaining these lies requires consistency between each fabricated story.
Lying makes up a core aspect of every item on this list. In most cases, your partner won’t want to show you any proof of the truth, as it will counteract their previous claims or behaviors.
You might talk to your spouse’s friends or colleagues if your partner has used them as excuses for staying out late in the past. If your spouse’s actions and stories don’t add up and their responses to your questions are defensive and emotional, consider the possibility of an affair.
If your partner exhibits any of these warning signs, it may be time to decide how you want to proceed with your relationship and if you want to take legal action.
Let Dame Legal Represent You
Discovering an extramarital affair doesn’t always result in divorce. You can try marriage counseling, honest communication, and second chances, too. We understand that a cheating partner can result in pain, confusion, and mixed feelings about the situation.
Our experienced divorce lawyers at Dame Legal will counsel you with expertise and understanding. We have four locations in Hackensack, Union City, and Clifton, New Jersey, as well as an office in New York City, New York. While ending a marriage is challenging, we’ll guide you through the divorce process and give you all the information you need. Contact us at 201-231-7580 to speak with one of our legal representatives today.