“It is necessary to the happiness of man that he be mentally faithful to himself. Infidelity does not consist in believing, or in disbelieving, it consists in professing to believe what he does not believe.” – Thomas Paine, The Age of Reason
Many possible life events occur for which we generally do not prepare. For instance, we do not generally expect or look for the death of a loved one, being diagnosed with cancer, falling victim to a mental illness, and so on. The simple yet complex reason for this unpreparedness is that we grow accustomed to a certain way of life. When life is complicated by a formidable obstruction, we tend to search desperately for answers. We may even feel like losing hope. Hopefully, we find the wherewithal to search for answers and a solution.
Infidelity is one of those “possible life events” that we don’t prepare for. Finding that a partner is cheating is particularly hurtful because we tend to give our all into a relationship. When you give your love, heart, and soul to another human being, you expect the same in return. You don’t expect your partner will cheat on you. A commonly-cited axiom in the medical community is, “Prevention is the best cure.” Apply this to a relationship with a potential cheater. Why suffer the consequences when they can be prevented in the first place?
Relationships can be extraordinarily complex. Combined with the individual quirks we all possess, precaution is a warranted measure when approaching someone who might have a tendency toward infidelity. In this piece, we present 10 signs that someone has the potential to cheat on a partner. As with any behavior, it can be difficult to decipher their intentions. At the same time, the more “symptoms” that are present, the likelier it is that a real problem exists.
That said, here are 10 signs of a potential cheater:
1. They’re emotionally distant
For the victim, this is pretty easy to observe but extraordinarily difficult to accept. Emotional detachment from someone you love is like a punch to the heart. Unfortunately, disconnection often preludes a deteriorating relationship. A potential cheat finds it easier to distance himself or herself emotionally from someone than to confront the real problem. It’s a cowardly act, in many ways.
2. Lack of sex or intimacy
When two people are in love, intimacy and/or sex naturally takes place. If a partner shows no interest in intimacy, it may be a sign of infidelity. This is especially true if no prior issues existed in this area. If nothing else, this behavior indicates some type of emotional or physical disconnection. A physical connection is vital in a healthy relationship. If you are facing this issue, you might want to have a serious discussion with your partner.
3. The need for “privacy”
This is not to disregard the reality that every person – in a relationship or otherwise – requires some “me time,” and there is absolutely nothing wrong with this. However, when your “other half” constantly says things like, “I need to be alone,” “Just let me be,” or “I need some time to think,” there is almost certainly some type of problem.
4. A sudden defensive attitude
Two people in a serious relationship should understand the differences between each other’s personalities. Hopefully, you understand the flaws of your partner, and you accept them. It is peculiar, then, for a partner to suddenly become defensive regarding obvious behavior shifts. Rational dialogue is a necessity for any relationship; if this becomes a problem, you might consider there’s some type of issue.
5. Irregular financial habits
Two people involved in a serious relationship understand the importance of monetary resources. Usually, any outgoing money is acknowledged and accounted for. If your partner drifts from this mutual understanding and engages in “splurges” for which they cannot account, it may indeed be a sign of detachment at best – and a cheat, at worst.
6. Becoming “fashion-conscious”
We all want to look our best for various reasons; commonly, to look respectable and professional. However, an abrupt change in appearance without explanation is uncommon, especially for those who have previously shown little interest in appearance. Those in a midlife crisis often cite a change in fashion as a “motivation” to look younger and more presentable. Of course, the desire to appear more attractive to the opposite sex is a real possibility.
7. They ignore your “inner circle”
One telltale sign of a cheater is a sudden disconnection from your circle of friends. This may forewarn a relationship problem. It is much easier and convenient for a cheat to separate from those close to you than to be upfront about their true feelings. This is even more conspicuous if your partner has always been close to your social circle.
8. They guard their phone/computer/etc.
Nobody likes having their phone tampered with. In a serious relationship or marriage, however, it isn’t strange to meddle around with your partner’s phone. Really, it’s not that big of a deal…unless they either have something to hide, or are simply in a bad mood. If your significant other suddenly objects to what was not an issue previously, you may consider additional caution.
9. They’re always excessively late
Anyone in a committed relationship will tell you that a schedule is paramount to making things work. This is especially true if someone is married, has kids, or other obligations for which they are responsible. A sudden abdication of responsible behavior is strange, particularly if that person cannot account for such conduct.
10. “Something came up at work”
Things happen at work. Sometimes, we’re asked to go “above and beyond” in order to do our jobs. Similar to many other things on this list, context is key. If your partner cannot explain the rationale behind working late, something is likely amiss. Having to work is a common and convenient excuse because it is so commonplace. That said, your partner should be able to fill you in on details regarding these work requests.