Men are not naturally monogamous—many psychologists and marriage counselors have said as much, and a wife who knows this is a wise woman indeed. This, of course, is not to condone infidelity. Some societies may accept men having more than one wife, but in this part of the world, it's believed that man and woman should love and be faithful to each other until death do them part.
“The first sign of a faltering love or friendship is the vague feeling that something is not quite right,” says counselor Bob Garon, author of the book, Reflections on Marriage. “That something which is so difficult to define is a subtle change in attitude, which causes a feeling of discomfort, first on the part of one, then the other.” You can go ahead and call it intuition, and many will say that women are more attuned to these feelings than men. The truth is, a concerned wife will certainly feel it when something is going on in her husband’s life.
“Of course, in reality, there really isn’t a concrete checklist that wives can use to see if their husbands are straying,” says Bunny Ty, MS, teacher and school director of The SchoolRoom, Inc., and a marriage, family, and child therapist. “It depends on each individual, the kind of marriage they have, their individual culture and the way their culture is ‘mixed’ in the marriage, their personal and relational values, and their family dynamics.” Ty, however, says that there are certain relationship warning signs that a wife (or a husband) should watch for, such as strained communication, losing interest in family rituals and traditions, and feelings of resentment, mistrust, anger, or indifference.
Whatever the reason may be for a spouse’s infidelity, Ty advises, “Don’t think it’s your fault—that you did or didn’t do something which caused your husband to stray.” Read on for 10 common factors that contribute to men's infidelity--but note that these are not excuses that will rationalize cheating, only things you may need to work through with your guy before he gets the urge to have an affair.
(First published as “I Think My Husband Is Cheating On Me" in the "Marriage Matters" section of Good Housekeeping Philippines' March 2002 issue. Adapted for use in Female Network. Screencap of Closer courtesy of Sony Pictures Entertainment. Additional reporting by Marianne Salazar.)