The very best piece of advice I have ever received from a man (actually from anyone) was given to me by the head of the largest private security firm in Los Angeles, shortly after I arrived there from London many years ago.
He said: always trust your intuition. Always.
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Admittedly he was talking more about being attacked or followed, but it also applies to the study of people. And I have never forgotten that advice.
I have always been an inveterate studier of people. I find people completely fascinating. I work with some of the most intriguing people in the world. I also work with some of the greatest philanderers on the planet and get to watch them in action. I watch the dad’s at the park (with their kids) in action too – it’s all the same.
This past weekend my phone was literally blowing up with 2 friends going through the “I think he’s cheating” routine. Which in turn made me bring this post forward – It was originally scheduled for March.
So if you are wondering if he is cheating on you or not, here is the advice I give and have given for years to girlfriends all over the world. (and being that most of you reading this blog are girls, you have no doubt participated in this same conversation hundreds of times too)
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1. Trust your intuition.
If you suspect he is cheating on you then he probably is.
2. If you are snooping through his emails, his social media, his phone and aren’t finding anything, but your intuition is telling you there’s something not right, then he probably is.
Plenty of men have secret social media profiles and email addresses, even secret phones.
** It should be noted though that if you are indeed snooping through his devices you either need to work on your self esteem or move on. There is nothing healthy about feeling that you need to spy on your partner.
3. The relationship re-evaluation.
How much of it is about really enjoying each others company and wanting to find quality time together? Does he choose to spend his spare time with you, or are you forcing him to? I have an aquaintance who keeps her boyfriend on the shortest, tightest leash you can imagine. She controls where he is at all times and he isn’t allowed any friends that aren’t her friends. But he still finds ways to cheat.
4. He changes his weight or his appearance.
I don’t think the constant cheater necessarily changes his appearance, but the guy who has recently found a side interest frequently will trim down, take more interest in his appearance, make an effort to look good for no apparent reason.
5. His memories are wrong
He refers to movies that you saw together, but that you didn’t see with him. Or maybe wine bars you’ve never been to. As he spends more time with her his memories blur into one another and he can’t quite remember who he did something with.
6. He suddenly gets defensive.
If you question something and he gets defensive instead of mildly annoyed there’s a good chance something is up.
Although I have watched serial cheaters in action over the years, and their absolute cool when under fire is borderline scary.
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7. He needs a lot of privacy, especially with his devices.
If your guy suddenly needs privacy when he’s texting or typing away on his devices, chances are something’s up.
I have a few clients though who sit there texting their side pieces while their wife is in the room, completely oblivious. They know that I know, but the wife is either in major denial or completely unaware. #awkward.
8. Pay close attention to detail.
One of the most successful cheaters I have ever known told me that the trick to successful lying is in the details. He said that what trips most men up is that they haven’t fleshed out a good, detail specific story ahead of time, and if they have done then they forget it a couple of days later.
Rather than go through his phone, randomly pick your guy’s brain. If he was actually where he says he was he will naturally remember things about it, who he was with, random little things.
If he gets evasive or irritated there is a strong chance he’s lying.
9. His provenance.
I know you can’t generalize, but there are certain nationalities for whom cheating is a national pastime. Especially the frenchies and the italians! I recently sat next to the most glorious Parisienne on a flight home from France. She told me that Parisian women aren’t thin because of any diet – she said it’s the endless stress of wondering who of your friends are sleeping with your husband! She also told me she’s never met an Italian who isn’t a cheater, but I like to think I know at least a couple.
10. Body language.
People give their game away with their body language. Even just learning the basics will serve you well in business, in life, and in telling whether or not he’s cheating. Unless he is a pure sociopath his eye movements alone will tell you when he’s lying.
The perilous terrain known as Cougarland
I know a few women in their 50s dating boys in their 30s. In every case she is the one with the money, and in some cases there is a green card in it for him. I feel like beating my head against a brick wall when they start questioning if I think he’s maybe cheating on her. Um.. yes. He is!!
I’m sure there are cougar relationships that work well, but back to my first point, if your intuition is telling you something’s not right, it’s not right.
I know one young fellow in a relationship with an older woman who told me he cheats on her all the time because she emasculates him. She always talks down to and about him, which also makes it uncomfortable to everyone else in the room. He was showing us his holiday photos the other day (she pays for great vacations) and one of the guys said it looked like our young friend was at an AARP convention.
I’m not anti cougar by any means, I just have never seen a cougar based relationship work for particularly long, unless she’s really not much older than he, and he is the primary bread winner.
Don’t blame the side action.
The female reflex seems to always be to blame the side-girl that he’s involved with, instead of blaming him. If he’s not loyal to you then he is the problem, not her.
And if you are the side girl always remember if you do manage to oust the wife/girlfriend and become his number one, the side girl position is now open…