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Is My Wife Cheating? 21 Subtle Signs to Watch Out For

In today’s post we’re going to discuss some key signs your wife may be cheating on you and what you should do.

Infidelity isn’t just a violation of a relationship agreement. It’s also a huge personal betrayal. It involves layers of dishonesty and disrespect that could be traumatic to the person who’s being cheated on.

It’s one of those experiences that stays with you. In fact, if you’ve been cheated on before, you’re likely going to be on the lookout for signs of it happening again.

21 Signs Your Wife Might Be Cheating

You might find yourself here because you already suspect that your wife might be cheating. You don’t know if you should trust your gut, or if you’re simply overreacting. Let’s talk about some red flags your wife might be cheating on you.

Her Cellphone Stays Facedown

Putting a cell phone facedown could be a sign that she’s trying to give you her undivided attention without being distracted by incoming notifications. In and of itself, this is not a sign of infidelity. However, if this is a new behavior with a new pattern of texts, calls, and messages, it could be a cause for concern.

In that case, turning the cell phone facedown could be an indicator of a need for more secrecy. Hiding the screen is different than turning it over to give you her undivided attention. Does she keep it facedown at all times? This could be an indication of cheating.

She Has a New Password on the Phone

A new password on the phone could be a sign of infidelity. While it’s possible she’s encountered a security breach that’s encouraged her to make the change, it’s also possible that the change is a result of a heightened need for privacy. If you once knew the password but don’t anymore, infidelity may be one possible reason for the change.

She Purchases New Outfits or Lingerie

If your wife suddenly has attractive new outfits and new lingerie, it’s possible that infidelity is involved. That shouldn’t be the first conclusion you draw, however. She could be trying to spice up your relationship or even give herself a boost of confidence.

However, if you combine this sign with multiple others, it could be a sign your wife is cheating.

There are Changes in Physical Intimacy

How would you rate your physical intimacy? Is the intimacy as frequent as ever, or is it a rare occurrence? Do you feel as connected to her as you once did? Changes in physical intimacy can be an indicator of trouble in your relationship — up to and including infidelity.

She’s More Insistent on Privacy

Is your wife suddenly more insistent on privacy? It’s possible that she’s cheating, and she needs to keep more of her life away from your scrutiny. Does she take conversations on the phone out of the room when she didn’t before? While it’s possible she’s trying to protect a friend’s privacy when she does this, it’s also possible your wife is cheating on you.

She Accuses You of Cheating

Does she accuse you of cheating? This is an interesting development, particularly if you’ve given her no reason to believe you’ve been unfaithful. Accusing you of cheating could be a way of projecting her own behavior onto you. Constant accusations could also be her way of justifying what she’s doing by believing that you, too, could be cheating.

She Doesn’t Leave Her Cell Phone Unattended

If you notice that her cell phone is never left unattended, this could be a sign your wife is unfaithful. Carrying it with her everywhere could be a way of preventing you from seeing any incoming messages or calls.

If she’s always carried it around like a baby, you might not think anything of this, but if it’s outside of her normal behavior, it could bring infidelity to mind.

She’s Working Late More Often

Noticing schedule changes is a common sign of cheating. If she’s suddenly working late more often, it might make you wonder. This is especially true if she has the kind of job that doesn’t typically lend itself to long hours. While there could be a reasonable explanation, it’s also a potential cover for cheating.

She Has Secrets Accounts or Emails

Suddenly having secret accounts or emails could be an indicator of infidelity. Most people don’t just set up new accounts and keep them secret unless there’s a safety issue present. If she doesn’t feel safe in the relationship, she might set up a new bank account or email for security reasons. In that case, it might be a sign of abuse within the relationship and not a sign she’s cheating.

However, if this relationship isn’t abusive, then it’s possible secret accounts are indicators of cheating — especially if she won’t offer an explanation for them.

She Stops Saying “I Love You” As Often

You know better than anyone else how much your wife says “I love you”. Does she suddenly stop saying it or only says it infrequently? Does she shorten it to “you, too” or “love you” or some other change to her normal communication?

This could be a sign that she’s feeling more distant from you — but it’s also an indication that she’s cheating.

She Spends More Time with Friends

If your wife suddenly starts spending time with friends, this doesn’t necessarily mean she’s cheating on you. However, it could be a sign. She could be using time with friends as a cover for seeing someone else.

She Showers as Soon as She Gets Home

One key sign that your wife is cheating on you is she starts to shower the moment she comes home. Is this a new behavior? It’s possible that she’s slept with someone else and feels the need to shower before interacting with you.

Of course, if she’s started going to the gym, it’s possible that what she’s doing is completely normal. Consider this behavior in context before jumping to the conclusion that she’s cheating.

You Catch Her Frequently Lying

Let’s face it: frequently lying to you is often a sign of infidelity. In healthy relationships, your partner doesn’t lie to you. Honesty is a foundation of the relationship agreement. Frequent lying is certainly a sign of a problem — even if that problem isn’t cheating.

Lying when combined with other signs here can certainly be an indicator that your wife is being unfaithful. It’s important to let her know that you don’t think she’s being honest with you.

She’s Engaging in Secretive Behavior

Are you noticing secretive behavior that you can’t explain? Maybe your wife is planning a surprise party for you, but if that seems unlikely, it could be a possible sign she’s cheating. It will certainly make you wonder.

Pay attention. If it seems like she’s planning a fun surprise, she’ll have a different energy than if she’s trying to hide infidelity from you. Is she simmering with excitement, or drowning in her own guilt?

She’s More Critical of You

One of the signs your wife may be cheating is that she becomes hyper-critical of everything you say and do. Picking apart everything is sometimes a sign that she’s cheating and trying to make you the problem. It could make her feel better about what she’s doing.

She could also be comparing and contrasting your behavior with a lover’s and finding that you come up short. If she stays annoyed no matter what you do, it might be another indicator that she’s being unfaithful when combined with other signs.

She Avoids You

If your wife starts to avoid you, it’s another sign of cheating. Someone who is engaged in a secret relationship may not feel comfortable spending time around you. Is this a new behavior? It’s possible that something else is going on, but infidelity is certainly one option.

She Doesn’t Get Jealous Anymore

You know your wife better than anyone else — or, at least, you did before you started suspecting she’s unfaithful. If she used to get jealous but doesn’t anymore, it could be a signal that she just doesn’t care if you move on because she has already.

A lack of jealousy could translate to indifference. If she’s not cheating, it’s at least an indicator that your relationship is in deep trouble.

She Clears Her Browser History

Clearing browser history could be a standard thing to do when troubleshooting a computer problem. Regularly clearing the browser history, however, could be suspect behavior. It’s possible she’s been cheating and doesn’t want her search history available for your perusal. Infidelity is just one reason she might do this.

Her Future Plans Get Hazy

Your wife may stop making future plans with you when she’s cheating. If she’s not eager to plan the next family vacation or holiday, she may not know if she’ll still be with you when they roll around. It’s possible that her indecisiveness is a sign that she’s planning a future with someone else — or just not with you.

She’s Avoiding Your Questions

Does your wife actively avoid answering your questions? This could be an indicator that she’s cheating, especially when she won’t explain where she’s been or what she’s been doing. It’s one thing to want some basic trust and privacy in a relationship, but it’s another thing entirely to disrespect the relationship with lies and infidelity.

Avoiding your questions could also involve turning the tables on you or distracting you with another line of inquiry. She could be trying to avoid lying directly to you, or it’s possible that she’s not sure how to explain the inconsistencies you’ve noticed.

Try not to get distracted no matter how much she tries to turn your attention in other directions.

She Pays More Attention to Her Appearance

A sudden positive change to your wife’s appearance could have nothing to do with infidelity. She could simply be experiencing an extra boost of confidence or is trying to put a spark back into your relationship. But if you pair an appearance change with multiple signs of infidelity, it’s possible that it’s a sign your wife is cheating.

This is especially true if her wardrobe at home is lackluster, but her work and going-out wardrobe has gotten far sexier than you’re accustomed to seeing. A more appealing look when she’s going out with friends or colleagues could bring questions to the surface about why she doesn’t make the same effort for you.

What You Should Do

Trust is an important part of any relationship. If you suspect that your wife has violated that trust, here’s what you should do.


Have you confirmed that she’s cheating — or do you just feel jealous? There’s a significant difference between the two. Before you go any further, you need to confirm if she’s cheating or if something else is going on.

If you have the ability to confirm whether or not she’s been cheating without violating her rights or privacy, it could help you know how you’ll want to proceed. Hiring a private investigator may be outside your budget, but there are other options to confirm infidelity. You can check credit card statements, phone bills, and other data for inconsistencies.


Once you confirm she’s cheating, it’s time to confront her with this information. Part of your decision making going forward may depend on how she handles the fact that you know. There may be relief you’ve finally found out, guilt for the behavior, or an acknowledgement that your relationship has come to an end.

You’ll have strong feelings, but try to communicate without name-calling, raised voices, or other forms of disrespect. Infidelity is a terrible betrayal, but you get to choose how you’ll manage your emotions in this moment.


Be honest with her. Do you want to try to overcome the damage to the relationship caused by her infidelity, or do you see it as something you could never forgive? Communicate with her about the next steps. Let her know how this makes you feel — and what you want to happen next.

Part of communication is listening. What does she want? Is she willing to stop the affair and recommit to the relationship, or was she just waiting for you to initiate the ending?

Source Professional Help

Whether or not you want to continue the relationship, it’s important to seek outside professional help. As a former therapist, I would recommend couples’ counseling even if your intention is to dissolve the marriage, particularly if children are involved. But I would equally recommend separate individual counseling with another therapist.

You’ll need the time and space to process your grief and betrayal no matter what happens to the relationship. Even though you could manage some of these feelings on your own, doing so can lead to unhealthy methods of coping.

Seeking help from a licensed and trained therapist can assist you as you navigate this difficult time.

It’s also advisable to have a neutral third party who can help facilitate communication between you and your wife. If you do want the relationship to continue, trust will need to be built from the ground up. It will take time and effort, but a professional can help you get there.


While infidelity is a sign that there is trouble within the relationship, remember that her actions are not your fault. What you do next is your responsibility. Remember as you move forward that you deserve to be loved and treated with honesty, kindness, and consideration.

Being cheated on can undermine your sense of security and self-worth. Remember to take time for self-care in the days to come and lean on your support system to help you get through this challenging experience.

You’ll also want to remember that infidelity is not an excuse to harm your wife or her lover. I hate to include this reminder, but any true crime fan will recognize the necessity of just such a warning. Two wrongs won’t ever make a right, and no matter how betrayed you feel, violence is not the answer.

You are entitled to your anger, but you are not entitled to harm another person. If you feel that you could be a threat to your wife or the person she’s cheating on you with, seek help to manage your anger.


If you cannot confirm your wife is actually cheating on you or go as far as to discover that your suspicions were unfounded, you might have put yourself through the grief and betrayal of infidelity without just cause.

Consider if you have trust issues that stem from early childhood or previous relationships. No one wants to be accused of cheating — especially if they aren’t. Unfounded accusations can also damage trust and intimacy in your relationship.

Consider seeking trauma therapy to address past issues that could impact your current relationship. If you’ve been suspicious of perfectly reasonable behavior, you may have some inner work to do to heal your sense of trust in others.

Instead of expecting partners to keep reassuring you of their fidelity and commitment, you need to address the suspicious elephant in the room — yourself.

Maybe she’s not cheating

There are many good reasons why a woman might start dressing more attractively, going out with friends, and decreasing physical intimacy with a spouse — reasons that don’t involve cheating. She could be experiencing a life change or trying to make more of an effort to nurture friendships.

There could be problems in the relationship that have made her less interested in physical intimacy — or health changes that might not have occurred to you.

Physical intimacy is often linked to emotional intimacy. If you and your wife haven’t spent quality time together lately, she might not be in the mood to get closer to you in the bedroom.

It’s also possible that an inequitable household labor distribution where she does more than her fair share of home tasks could be creating distance and resentment in the relationship.

Before you suspect cheating, ask yourself if you’ve been putting effort into connecting with your wife in a way that’s not purely physical.

While you may hope that you never experience the painful betrayal of an unfaithful partner, it’s possible that you already suspect a problem. Take the time to feel your feelings, investigate why you suspect infidelity, and decide what you want to do if you find out that your worst fears are true.

It may seem like the worst possible thing that could happen to you, but it could be the motivation that either brings you closer together or helps you get out of the wrong relationship so that you can be open and available to the right one.

Right now, all you need to worry about is your next step — and your next breath. Don’t forget to breathe, get support, and take care of yourself as you trust your gut and look for answers.

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Photo by Brittani Burns on Unsplash

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