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Not long ago I presented a paper to some colleagues, detailing my observations over the last 18 years in relation to the type of behaviour men tend to adopt when they are cheating on their partners.

It has come to my attention that my paper was photocopied and emailed and re-emailed to others. If you were not a recipient of my paper, I have reproduced below the section which has proved to be of great interest:


“….it is often said jokingly by a woman scorned “is there some secret play book for cheating men, because when I have discussed my husband’s behaviour prior to my discovering that he was cheating, my friends all say that their boyfriend or husband exhibited the same traits?”

There is no play book, when it comes to cheating partners it is “psychology 101!”

As Sigmund Freud said: “The borderline personality avoids abandonment by in authentically resurrecting the relationships he habitually damages; the obsessive-compulsive personality deceives to protect himself from external control; the narcissist deceives to deny any hint of imperfection; and the psychopath takes delight in exploiting others.”

After nearly 18 years of practicing in the area of marriage and relationship breakdowns, I have developed a list of indicia or signs which in my experience are often present in a relationship struggling under one partner’s infidelity. The list includes:

  1. Changes in routine – regularly coming home from work much later than usual or leaving earlier and taking work trips interstate or overseas.
  2. Change in interests – including joining a new gym after years of infrequent activity.
  3. Renewed interest in team building at work – which requires increased drinks and socialising after work or on weekends to “team build.”
  4. Starts friendships with the younger and single men at work.
  5. Displays of youthful exuberance and impulsiveness – “I want to take up triathlons or mountain climbing or I am taking guitar or drum lessons.”
  6. New clothes start appearing, for example he begins to wear shirts with a double cuff and fashionable cufflinks, which he says were gifted by a client (take special note if he is no longer interested in polo shirts and khaki shorts with loafers).
  7. Starts dying his hair – (don’t confuse vanity with attempting to look younger);
  8. Starts being injected with Botox – (don’t confuse serious vanity with attempting to look much younger).
  9. He jumps when you ask to use his mobile phone.
  10. You hear frequent message alerts on his mobile phone even late at night or on weekends or holidays.
  11. He changes his passwords on his mobile phone and email or has a second mobile phone which he says he uses for work.
  12. He asks you not to call him at work and when you do call he is short with you.
  13. He asks you not to come to the office and refuses to introduce you or take you out with work colleagues or to the office Christmas Party.
  14. He has a credit card and the bill goes to his office.
  15. When at home he retreats to his study to play on his computer.
  16. He is moody and critical towards you and the children.
  17. His behaviour towards you changes, he is no longer intimate or alternatively he wants to experiment more.


Whilst there may be other reasons for your partner’s behaviour, and infidelity does not always mean that a relationship is over. In my experience these signs provide a useful guide to undertaking your own research and inquiries to find out if your partner is cheating on you.

If after your own research, you conclude that you partner is indeed cheating on you, you will find yourself on an emotional roller coaster, where for a time your emotions will range from rage and anger to self-blame. At this point you will need to ask yourself the question … “Am I prepared to leave him?”

This decision takes an enormous toll, not just on you, but on your entire family. It is a decision that is not to be taken lightly, however if you do intend to separate, be armed with the knowledge to take the next step because “knowledge is power”.

Over the next few weeks, we will be creating a series of family law education videos to both inform and provide women with the knowledge to tackle separation.

The video updates will be posted on our Facebook page and on our blog, so if you have any comments or a related topics that you would like us to comment on, please let us know, so that we can spread the knowledge.

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