Photo Credit: General Photographic Agency/hulton archive
When it comes to cheating, men are king. We cheat at cards, we cheat on our taxes, and far too often, we cheat on our partners. According to the Ashley Madison Agency, 50 to 60 percent of men will engage in an extramarital tryst at some point in their lives.
Our reasons are myriad, but the telltale signs of propensity for infidelity are typically the same. Gain insight into your own potential cheating heart by reading the top 10 signs you're about to have an affair.
10. You create a web of excuses and stories
Once reticent and quiet, you've suddenly become a better storyteller than Mother Goose. You never leave the house without an alibi, and you're constantly lying about the women with whom you've been spending time. You haven't done anything yet, but you're clearly preparing yourself for the day when you do.
9. You feel trapped
You feel completely ensnared and you're not even sure how it happened. One moment you were happily picking berries and catching salmon in the river, the next you're concealed behind glass in a five-foot enclosure and being viewed by hundreds of grubby schoolkids every day. Like any trapped animal, you likely resent your lack of freedom and are eager to return to the wild. Chances are you're also terrified that if you stay with your current partner she will be the last person you will ever have sex with (for free, anyhow).
8. You are suddenly forgiving of your cheating friends
Rather than condemning your buddies for cheating on their partners, you find reasons to empathize. Sure, your best pal might be having an affair, but his girlfriend had it coming to her for putting on 10 pounds. So what if she was pregnant? You share your friend's motivations and find yourself able to rationalize even their most caveman-like behavior.
7. You develop a relationship with other women
It used to be the only time you truly opened up was when you were screaming at your TV set during Monday Night Football. Now all of a sudden you can't shut up. You find yourself seeking out sympathetic women and telling them all about your crumbling relationship. Be forewarned: Most women eat this kind of conversation up faster than a bowl of fat-free chips. Emotional affairs like these are only one crying session and a couple of tequilas away from becoming a full-fledged physical fling.
6. You keep your girlfriend a secret
When speaking with other women, you find yourself concealing the fact you have a girlfriend, even lying about her existence when asked. You enjoy receiving attention from these women and are reluctant to bring the conversation to a halt by admitting you share your bed with a 200-pound behemoth who's beginning to look more and more like her mother every single day... or not.
5. You have sexual thoughts of being with other women
Let's face it: If you're a living and breathing, red-meat-eating, SportsCenter-watching man, you're bound to entertain thoughts of having sex with other women. If you didn't, no porn company in the world could ever operate in the black. When your mind starts to wander, however, it's only a matter of time before your body starts to follow. You might even find you're unable to perform with your partner unless you imagine she's someone else (should that someone else be Star Jones, you might want to rush into therapy immediately).
4. You let your girlfriend understand it's okay to cheat
By relaxing your moral code, you hope your partner will be more understanding if she eventually catches you playing nude Twister with the maid. You suggest threesomes might be worth a shot, you tell her that monogamy is overrated, and you even try to convincing her that you're one-third Mormon.
3. You search for arousal elsewhere
You find yourself increasingly drawn to pornography and strip joints, and not only for the chance to drink $10 beers and listen to "Wild Thing." The real issue, of course, is that you're no longer aroused by your partner. Perhaps you miss the spontaneity of when you first met, or maybe you can't get the image of her Days of the Week underwear out of your head. Whatever the reason, on those rare occasions you still have sex, you find yourself going through the motions, rushing through foreplay and finishing after only a few minutes (rather than the full five minutes you usually last).
2. You notice ads for escorts and sign up to adult sites
You begin searching for women who are up for a good time and are still eager to impress. These women might be less attractive than your current partner, but at least they still have that new-girlfriend smell. After all, you're not looking to settle down again, you're just looking to have some no-strings-attached fun.
1. You pick up women & get phone numbers
You increasingly find yourself at clubs and bars resorting to your old tricks. You're turning on the charm, using your old pickup lines and even bathing regularly again. Chances are you're even more successful than before because you have the safety net of a secure relationship to return to, and the confidence that comes with it.
Honorable Mention: You put yourself in prime situations for meeting women
You start enrolling in salsa and cooking classes... by yourself. Perhaps you find reasons to work late and crunch numbers with that attractive (and slightly dimwitted) intern. Maybe you've even become the one male member of a feminist book club. The point is you're beginning to play the field more aggressively than Pete Rose.
Cheating the System
Do these signs sound familiar? These sudden '- and cumulative '- changes in your personality, words and actions could mean you're planning to run into the arms of another woman. Before you do, however, remember that any relationship worth saving can be saved through open and honest communication and that affairs, however tempting, have the potential to blow up in your face.
After all, once trust has been lost, it can never fully be regained. In the end, remember the words of Ralph Waldo Emerson: "It is impossible for a man to be cheated by anyone but himself." Proceed cautiously in these delicate affairs of the heart.
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