When you got married, you and your spouse likely shared common hopes and dreams for your relationship and your future life together. Perhaps numerous years have passed since then and you have worked together to make some of those dreams come true, such as having children, maybe starting a business or buying your own home. Marriage can be hard work but also a great blessing.

In a perfect world, you and your spouse would continue together in life without any relationship obstacles to stand in your way. In reality, any number of unexpected situations may arise that shake your relationship to its core, such as suspecting that your spouse is cheating on you. Many Tennessee spouses file for divorce in such circumstances, which is why it’s always good to know your options ahead of time, as well as how to protect your and your children’s best interests.

Issues that warrant further investigation

Most married couples go through rough spurts in their relationships. Raising children, financial stress, relocating, illness and many other issues can put serious strain on a marriage. The following list shows signs that often lead spouses to believe their partners are committing infidelity:

  • Did your parents used to teach you to trust your instincts? Having a gut feeling that a spouse is cheating is often the first sign of trouble in a marriage.
  • Ironically, many spouses lose weight and otherwise improve their physical appearance when they are having affairs. This doesn’t necessarily mean your spouse is cheating if he or she drops a few pounds, but if you think it’s a possibility, you may want to further investigate the situation.
  • Remember when you were a teenager and tried to keep your phone calls private? Spouses who are guilty of infidelity often become quite secretive when using cellphones or computers.
  • If physical intimacy has changed in your marriage, you may have reason to suspect infidelity. Either type of change, meaning fewer encounters than you’re used to or a significant increase, can be a sign that your spouse is having an affair.
  • When a spouse feels guilty about cheating, he or she may become defensive or hostile toward his or her partner. If your spouse keeps blaming you for problems in your relationship or has grown distant or irritable, it may signal infidelity.
  • Another sign of trouble might be that your spouse, who is typically a creature of habit, has suddenly changed the normal course of activity in his or her day. Is your spouse telling you he or she has to work late all the time or is unavailable to keep plans the two of you made?
  • Other people are often aware of a spouse’s infidelity before his or her marriage partner. If your friends or relatives seem uncomfortable around you regarding your spouse, his or her extra marital affair might be the reason.

Only you and your spouse truly understand the issues that are causing contention in your marriage. However, if someone mentions something to you that seems to confirm your suspicions, you may want to address the topic infidelity head-on with your partner.

What then?

Not every couple divorces in light of infidelity. However, many do. In fact, Tennessee family law attorneys are used to handling cases where the causal factor toward divorce was an extramarital affair. It can be helpful to meet with a trusted friend, family member, minister, counselor or legal advocate in a confidential setting if you wish to discuss such issues.