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19 Ways to Tell If Your Partner Is Cheating

Discover cheating clues from relationship gurus.

A significant percentage of relationships end because of infidelity, and people who claim they were completely blindsided by the news that their partner was cheating are probably fooling themselves, experts say. There are plenty of telltale signs that your loved one's attentions have drifted elsewhere, from the obvious to those uneasy feelings that's something's just … not right. These are the top 20 ways to tell if your partner is cheating, according to relationship gurus like Tracey Cox. 

They Become More Critical


Your partner may suddenly have more complaints, "​​pouncing on everything you do wrong and pointing out your many flaws," said Cox in the Daily Mail this week. "This justifies the affair to themselves: Of course I'm having an affair! I'm married to her/him!"

They're Secretive With Their Phone


Being suddenly secretive with their phone is considered the "biggest hint they may be playing away," said Cox.

They Accuse You of Cheating


During the Donald Trump era, we've become accustomed to the psychological tactic of projection—accusing someone else of the transgression they're guilty of to cause a distraction.

They Avoid Eye Contact


Guilty people tend to look away from the target of their falsehood. "In fact, research suggests if your partner can look you in eyes and touch you lovingly at the same time, it's a good indication they aren't up to anything," said Cox.

Changing Interests


A loved one who's suddenly expanding their interests and hobbies might be doing so at the behest of someone else. 

Differing Spending Habits


Are they running a lot more errands than usual? Withdrawing more cash? It could be to spend on someone else. 

Mood Swings


Erratic emotions and outbursts can be a telltale sign someone has something to hide. "Affairs are turbulent," explained Cox. "You oscillate between being unbearably excited to desperately guilty. It's a rollercoaster of emotions that are impossible to hide completely."

Avoidance of Future Talk

Woman pushing man aside during argument on the couch

If your loved one stops talking about future plans or steers the conversation away from life down the road, that's another danger sign.

They've Become More Distant


If someone you love has become increasingly remote or distracted, it can be a sign their thoughts are increasingly centered on someone else. 

Their Appearance Changes


Before the advent of cellphones, this was probably the telltale sign that someone in a long-term relationship was stepping out: They suddenly adopt a new gym routine, drop weight, or snazz up their wardrobe. It could be to impress an interloper. 

Their Routine Changes


"If your boyfriend used to run at 5 a.m. and now he's running at 7 p.m. and for twice as long, you don't need to be a rocket scientist to figure out something's going on," said Cox. Shifting work schedules and "spending more time at the office" or on business travel is also suspect. 

They're Less Unreachable


If they'd immediately return your text or call, and now you don't hear back from them for hours, it's rarely good news. 

Their Body Language Shifts


If someone who used to be warm and cuddly cools toward you physically, there's usually a reason—and that can be another person.

They Become Terse


If a loved one who was previously chatty and divulged various details about their day starts to clam up and become verbally withholding, it could be because something's going on they don't want to tell you about. 

Their Friends Avoid You


When your loved one's friends give you the cold shoulder, finding reasons not to hang out with you, "it could be they know what's going on," said Cox.

Your Friends Drop Hints


"Men tend to cover up for each other; women feel obliged to give some sort of warning, no matter how subtle. While few people will blurt the news out, many give themselves away by making indirect comments." For example: "I just read this new article on infidelity."

You Become Depressed


If you find yourself in a prolonged low mood and just can't put your finger on why—try looking to your relationship. 

Late Nights


If your partner is coming home late at night with no explanation—or with sketchy ones—it's another big red flag. 

RELATED: Mom Lost 66 Pounds With These Simple Changes

Your Instincts Just Say, Something's Off


Many people whose relationships have been subject to infidelity just get a spidey sense that something's wrong.

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