Affair Help: Suspecting an Affair

Affair Help: Behavioral Clues Of An Adulterer

by Christopher Kaszak

Whether someone is guilty of a crime or committing adultery, they leave behind behavioral clues that are indicative of the presence of guilt. I’m not going to address in too much detail the popular clues that are addressed ad nauseam, since they are widely available and easily accessed. Most private investigator websites, including ours, display these popular clues as a service to the reader. I’m going to address the behavioral indicators that are displayed when those sneaking suspicions lead to the question, “Is there someone else?” and how they respond.

First, let’s touch some of the clues that may initially raise your level of suspicion. I categorize them into two groups, excuses and behaviors. Excuses would include any reason to meet with the other party; working late, happy hour, overtime on the weekend, meeting with a long-lost friend, especially one that you haven’t met etc. Behaviors are any actions that are out of the ordinary for that person, and those actions are usually tied directly to the other person. They include being secretive with cell phone calls, texts, or deleting computer browsing in attempts to hide their nature. They can also translate to physical behavior, with changes to sexual technique, significant and sudden increase or decrease in sexual appetite, as well as having greater concern to outward appearances such as new clothing, wearing new cologne, or working out. None of these behaviors by themselves mean that your partner is cheating, but they are enough to arouse suspicion when more than one is present.

After experiencing these behaviors that are out of the ordinary for your partner, you may find yourself in the position of directly asking whether or not there is another person. If you do ask, how can you be certain that the response is truthful? That is where Forensic Interviewing can help. At its simplest, it is the study of identifying deception through behavioral analysis and how to overcome deceptive denials. As a general rule, any answer to a yes or no question that is anything other than “yes” or “no” is a good start in identifying deception.

The simplest reasons that people lie is the fear of being caught, punishment, embarrassment, or loss of current situation. When a deceitful person is asked about cheating, they will most likely offer the objection/explanation denial. This is when their response to the yes or no question is something along the lines of “Baby, now why would I do that when you know I love you,” or “I wouldn’t risk losing everything,” or “I would never do that, don’t you trust me?” It is an offensive tactic that often starts with a true statement and then offers an explanation as to why it can’t be true, and then entire response is designed to throw the person asking the question off balance by presenting a question or situation in exchange of providing the answer. Each response is an open door for more explanation, and most people unskilled in the art of interviewing or interrogation will miss that opportunity because they want to believe them, in spite of their suspicions.

A truthful person will answer the question with a direct denial, “No, I didn’t.” Note I didn’t say, “I did not have sexual relations with that woman.” Again, the terms sexual relations and that woman leave the door open for explanation, and an experienced investigator would focus on those explanations and ask further question. Now, just as the liar has fears, so does the truthful person. The truthful person’s biggest fear is the fear of not being believed, and their denials will become more intense as questions continue. The deceitful person may change their story and shift the focus of uncomfortable questions to some other aspect, away from their actions.

Now, this is just a very cursory overview of what to look for after the excuses and behaviors raise your suspicions to the point of asking the direct question. This overview is in no way the definitive guide in identifying liars and truthful people, but when used as a tool in addition to excuses and behaviors, you have a good starting point in deciding how to proceed, with or without a private investigator.


“I'm not a teacher, only a fellow traveler of whom you asked the way. I pointed ahead - ahead of myself as well as you.” ~ George Bernard Shaw