Is your boyfriend cheating? Or did he cheat in the past?
Unless he confessed, you probably won’t know for sure. (Unless you catch him in the act!)
After all, cheaters are usually good at lying.
But still… there are subtle signs of infidelity.
You’ve known him for a while now, right? So you know what his normal behavior is like.
And when he’s acting differently… more present and eager to please… well, sometimes that’s one of the first signs he feels guilty for hurting you. Even if you don’t know what he did yet.
Men who cheat almost always feel guilty about it. And the guilt affects their behavior.
So you can look for these signs he feels guilty about something. They’re not always a dead giveaway, but if he’s showing more than one of these symptoms of guilt from cheating then you should be suspicious.
(Related: Take this quiz to find out if he’s cheating.)
1. He acts hurt over small things.
You say something totally innocent and he twists it around into something way worse. And then gets offended.
Or maybe you teased him playfully like you always do, but for some reason this time he’s deeply hurt.
Of course he’s not actually hurt. In his mind, he’s trying to level the playing field.
He wants you to say or do something hurtful, because maybe then he won’t feel so bad for cheating. He might even be looking for a way to justify more infidelity.
2. He holds your past mistakes over your head.
Out of nowhere he starts bringing up that time you forgot his birthday, or the nasty thing you said during an argument 8 months ago.
Things you already apologized for. Things you thought he forgave and forgot.
What’s his deal? He’s looking for something – anything – to make it seem like both of you have equally wronged each other. It’s one of the sure signs of a guilty conscience in a relationship.
And since you’ve never even come close to cheating, he’s got to work with what he’s got.
3. He is suddenly very caring for your needs.
There was a time – way back at the beginning of your relationship – when he was attentive to your needs.
Time went by and things became more routine. He probably started taking you for granted a little bit.
Now all of a sudden he’s more in tune with you than he’s ever been. He’s listening to you and seems to genuinely care about what you’re saying.
Maybe he’s just giving you some much-needed appreciation. But if you suspect he hasn’t been true to you, this could be a sign he’s feeling guilty.
4. He accuses you of not trusting him.
You asked him what he was up to yesterday in a perfectly innocent way, and he blew up at you. “Why don’t you trust me?” he whines.
If he’s accusing you of mistrust when you haven’t said anything of the sort, it shows you where his mind is. In a healthy relationship your partner won’t have any problem telling you about what he’s been up to.
Unless you’re actually giving signals that you don’t trust him, he shouldn’t accuse you of it. If he does, it might be because he knows deep down he’s untrustworthy.
5. He doesn’t make eye contact.
Does he look you in the eye when he tells you he loves you? During dinner, is he staring at the table instead of you?
There are a couple reasons why a cheating boyfriend won’t make eye contact.
- He’s lying, and he thinks you’ll pick up on it if you look at his eyes. We all know how people’s eyes get shifty when they’re not telling the truth.
- Looking at you makes him feel even more guilty. He’s reminded of the great partner who he has betrayed.
6. He tries to get you to cheat.
Or at least, he tries to get you to do something suspect.
Maybe he encourages you to go out to the bars with your single friend… the one who always gets hit on when she goes out.
Or maybe he’s suddenly encouraging you to take that solo trip to Paris. (The same trip he freaked out over last time you brought it up.)
No, he hasn’t suddenly started trusting you more. He wants you to cheat. And the only ones who do that are cheaters – or people with weird fetishes.
7. He’s bringing up your past.
The two of you used to have an understanding: leave the past alone.
Talking about past relationships and sexual partners can often lead to hurt feelings. So why is he suddenly bringing up that fling you had with the Australian guy before you guys met? Didn’t that used to bother him?
He might be bringing it up because it bothers him. Even though that all happened before you two were together, it still stirs up some jealousy and anger.
And sometimes jealousy and anger are exactly what a cheater needs in order to feel less guilty.
8. He accuses you of cheating.
This one might be the biggest clue of all.
If he’s accusing you of cheating when there is literally no reason for him to suspect it, that is a serious red flag.
Either it means he has major trust issues, or he’s the one who’s doing the cheating.
If your boyfriend is faithful, he’s not going to suspect you’re unfaithful unless you’ve given him a reason to do so.
Accusing you of cheating out of nowhere should clue you in that he might not be faithful after all.