My marriage went up in smoke the day I found a text from another woman on my husband’s phone. So many people ask me whether I saw it coming. I wish I had but I didn’t. I had been totally blind to the signs of his unfaithfulness. Now as I look back I see so many signs that were staring me in the face, yet at the time, I simply wasn’t seeing them.
If someone had sat me down only the week before that fateful day and told me that my husband had developed feelings for another woman, I would have told them they had the wrong man! It would have been like someone telling me the sky is green. I simply wouldn’t have believed it.
When someone doesn’t want you to see something, they will distract you from seeing it, it’s that simple. They may reassure you, ‘of course everything is okay, I’m just stressed at work.’ They may gaslight you, ‘you’re paranoid! Are YOU cheating on me, is that what all this is about?’ Or they may out-and-out lie to you, ‘sorry I’m going to be working late again tonight, miss you 😦 ’All of these tactics deter you from learning the truth that you are entitled to.
There are a hundred reasons behind every type of behaviour, so if your partner is acting in any of the following ways, it doesn’t always point towards infidelity. However, these are pretty good indicators that something might be up.
He or she becomes distant
You can’t quite put your finger on it, but there is a feeling that they have become disengaged with you. They may be doing all of the same things as usual but there is this sense that something is happening just below the surface.
They may seem more quiet than usual, not putting effort into communicating with you and just holding back. Their guilt may be making them want to put distance between you both and keeping you at arm’s length may be making it easier for them to carry on with their infidelity .
The less they communicate, the less likely they are to drop themselves in it. They may keep conversation very basic and not talk about the specifics of their day.
They may be cutting off from you emotionally and connecting that emotion to their new love interest. If there is an emotional disconnect, this is usually one of the most obvious signs that they may be developing feelings for another person.
You feel as though you are under a microscope
Suddenly, everything you do is wrong! He or she may start to pick you up on the littlest things you do, things that had never bothered them before. They may start conflict with you for no reason whatsoever. There may be so much of an inner struggle within them, in terms of their feelings that they want it to come out in the open and become an outward conflict between the two of you.
You feel as though you are being judged and observed and it may be that you are being judged and measured, against someone else.
They may even criticise you for the way you look or that you haven’t been making enough effort lately with your appearance (blaming you for their eyes wandering).
In order for them to carry out their unfaithful behaviour, they will need to find faults in you to justify their actions to themselves and this means putting you under a microscope and focusing on the things that they dislike about you. They may verbalise annoyances to you to begin making a case against you of their ‘discontent,’ all of this helps them to justify their behaviour.
A sudden focus on their appearance
You may see that they are going through a transformation with their appearance and they are focusing heavily on the way they look.
They may join a gym out of nowhere and visit it frequently, becoming a real gym enthusiast. Their body shape may change and they might be trying to build muscle or get definition to impress. They may change their haircut.
They might have a new interest in buying different clothes to what they would normally like to wear and start dressing differently, creating a whole new look which might be more youthful and appealing. They may start asking for your opinion on their outfit choices when they never did before.
Obviously everyone can get self-esteem issues and this can fuel a change in how a partner may focus on their appearance. However, a sudden focus on appearance may also be a sign that they are trying to impress and attract someone, especially if it comes out of nowhere and it is out of character for them.
A change in their daily routine
Everyone has to work late now and again but if your partner used to be home at half six each night and now suddenly it’s half seven or later every night, there may be nothing to worry about or it could be that these odd half hours/hours are being used to meet with their love interest.
If your partner usually calls you through out the day, at lunch breaks or when they leave the office and these calls suddenly completely stop, it may mean they are with someone and are unable to speak with you or that you are no longer the focus of their thoughts throughout the day.
It may be that your partner who is usually a home bird now seems to be going out more socially with work, attending events that they normally would avoid. It could be that this is time to spend their love interest and they may be using these events as a guise for this.
We are creatures of habit and when things start to change in someones daily pattern it might indicate that there is something going on.
They are on the defense
If you do call your partner out on their behaviour and ask if something is going on, they may become angry with you and defensive. You may have caught them off guard and made them panic, which leads to them lashing out.
If you ask them about their whereabouts or ask who they have been with, they may blow up at you and make you feel like you are paranoid or crazy. This will shift the focus on to you and place you in a negative light, leading you to feel guilty that you have not trusted them. They may also highlight your insecurities as the cause for your mistrust.
Your partner may even blame you and accuse you of having an affair. When someone is guilty of an affair, they realise they have crossed a boundary in your marriage/relationship and it may make them believe you have the capability to cross it just as easily. They can then use this as a defense.
Your gut is just telling you something is off
Your partner may just have this air of shady-ness about them. It might be that they will be overly apologetic once they have blown up at you for doing something that has annoyed them. It might be they hold you differently in an embrace, like they are emotionally cut off. It might be that they struggle to hold eye contact with you or your family. They could just appear plain guilty!
Whatever it is, there is something telling you that something is not right. Your instincts are calling to you, that there may be something lurking underneath the surface. It can be so painful to peak at what is beneath, when you have loved and trusted your partner but if your gut is telling you something is off, you owe it to yourself not to bury your head in the sand.
Before you embark on a one man/one woman detective mission and start following your partners every move, remember that changes in behaviour can have so many reasons behind them and not every one of them will come down to infidelity. It may be there are other factors in their life that are driving the change, so be open-minded and don’t jump to any conclusions.
If you truly suspect your partner is having an affair, watch, listen, be awake.
Things that happen in that dark often find their way into the light.
6 thoughts on “Reality Check: The Affair Signs I Didn’t See”
I think your last point is something not to be ignored. For a while, “things” seemed out of place, but I couldn’t put my finger on it. Women are also known for having a higher rate of intuition than men. So chances are, if you’re “spidey senses” are tingling, there might be something wrong. Back in those days, I didn’t pay much attention to our finances or I probably would’ve spotted it sooner. It’s difficult for adults to not leave a paper trail due to our tendency to use debit and credit cards.
In my experience, people can only maintain a façade for so long before character leaks occur. In my opinion, it’s best to not confront your spouse, but watch and listen. People also do crazy things and make irrational decisions when confronted, so it’s also best to take the a route that’s considers your personal safety.
Thank you for sharing.
LikeLiked by 1 person
Thank you Brian, for your comments. This is great advice, it is so important to be careful in the way you approach someone about what you suspect, as people can indeed be unpredictible in their reaction. I’m really sorry that you have experienced betrayal, it’s such a horrible thing to go through. My instincts didn’t seem to kick in until very late on and I seemed to have missed so many of the signs and yet now I see them all so clearly. I like how you describe them as “spidey senses” 🙂
You are so right about the ‘character leaks’ that appear in time and this is something I definitely experienced with my husband but I put it down to stress at work. It’s so hard to believe that the person you love is capable of hurting you in such a profound way.
Thank you so much for sharing your experience, I really appreciate this.
LikeLiked by 1 person
Your observations are spot on. Too bad it took me two affairs to catch it. As painful as it is, life is better without people who don’t make your life better! Thanks for sharing your experience.
LikeLiked by 1 person
I’m really sorry you too have gone through this difficult experience. It’s really hard to spot the signs when they often do all they can to distract and reassure you. You are totally right. We are worth so much more than to be treated in that way and as difficult as it is we are better off without them. Thank you for your comments 🙂
My divorce counselor said “people use deception, because it works.” Made me feel better about missing the signs. You should too. Hang in there. Life is good!
LikeLiked by 1 person
Thank you for your kind encouragement 🙂