Cultivating lasting friendships can make a marriage stronger. It can provide a couple with a strong support system during tough times. But there are instances when deep friendships can cause damage. In many cases of infidelity, the “third party” is usually a close friend.
If you observe these signs, talk to your spouse immediately, before things get out of hand.
1. He texts her constantly, even late at night
It’s perfectly normal to chat or speak to friends on the phone, but if your husband is spending all his time texting his close friend even while you’re already in bed, then this may be a red flag. Texting and updating her about every little thing may not necessarily mean he’s carrying on an affair, but it shows how dependent he is becoming on his friend.
2. He locks his phone and deletes conversations
This is one obvious warning sign to watch out for. Yes, he’s entitled to his privacy, but why would he need to go out of his way to constantly wipe his phone clean if he didn’t feel like there’s anything worth hiding? Even if he’s not cheating, the mere fact that he’s trying to keep things from you is a form of deception and if it becomes a habit, you can drift apart without you realizing it.
3. Intimacy is no longer frequent
Can’t remember the last time you had sex? Have other sweet forms of intimacy become less frequent, too? These may be warning signs that he is straying. Of course, sex isn’t the most important thing in a marriage, but its absence can be very telling. It may be hinting at infidelity, but it could also be a sign emotional disconnectedness, which you can work through together through loving communication.
4. He constantly brings her up in conversation
He may just be fond of her, but if he feels the need to steer the conversation so he can talk about his close friend, you should be observe him closely. He may just be developing a crush, but it could easily evolve into something more. Find out why he has formed this impulse to constantly bring up stories about her, even if it’s unrelated to your current topic.
5. He confides in his friend more than you
Does he open up to her about issues he should be telling you about? If she’s more updated about his life and what issues he’s facing, this means you should be more careful. But more than just trying to confirm your suspicions, try to reach out to him. Perhaps he only needs to be listened to without fear of judgment or rebuffs.
Remember that being overly paranoid and trying to control your partner’s friendships can be damaging, too. This article is in no way encouraging you to see your husband’s friendships in a malicious light, especially if there is no cause for suspicion. But it’s important to be observant and sensitive to keep your partner from straying.
Of course, it’s ultimately their choice. But striving to communicate better and to try to be the best versions of yourselves for each other can help strengthen your bond to better face whatever temptation may come your way in the future.
sources: YourTango, Marriage Builders, Psych Central
READ: 5 Warning signs that flirting has developed into emotional cheating