Amanda nearly didn’t see it coming. It was back in early 2006 when she first came to see me with her problem.
She had registered her marriage to Bernard a few months before that, in late 2005, and was in the midst of planning her wedding reception. Amanda complained to me that she felt that something was not right with her husband.
Bernard, it seems, had taken to working longer hours and was doing more “entertaining” with his clients. However, there were no other smoke signals, so to speak.
In any case, Amanda asked us to conduct surveillance on Bernard to check if he was fooling around.
This was on February 11, and experience has shown us that many cheating husbands celebrate Valentine’s Day with their mistresses on February 13 to avoid arousing the suspicions of their wives.
Well, the surveillance revealed that Bernard was having an affair with one of his subordinates in his employer’s company. Amanda was devastated. She had been married a scant four months!
Statistics on sexual behaviour are patchy, and I recently came across one figure that says 50 percent of all people who suspect their partner of having an affair are proved correct. Well, my firm handles four to six infidelity cases a month and in our experience the figure is 100 percent!
Some corroboration of this might be seen in the trend of a rising national divorce rate, both at the civil and Shariah courts. One reported statistic, attributed to the Malaysian Institute of Integrity, shows that in 2005, there were 163,828 marriages against 21,016 divorces. This is of course a rough figure. But While human relations are complex, and some of the methods below may seem, well, calculating, they are necessarily so to be effective at confirming or allaying suspicions. You could also just ask him, of course, but the results of that would be difficult to predict.
Here then is a guide to detecting infidelity – be it at an early or advanced stage. Let’s start with the cheating men, shall we? (Though some of these signs apply equally to women.)
Look out for these signs:
1. At the beginning of the affair, the husband may actually be more affectionate than usual due to guilty feelings. He will be generous with gifts for unexplained reasons.
2. Later, he often finds fault with his wife as a defensive mechanism against being found out. We also see cases where the husband will pick a fight with the wife in order to create an excuse to leave the house to meet the lover.
3. Cheating husbands often lose interest in domestic activities, such as spending time with the kids, tending to household chores, gardening, etc. While they shirk such chores, these husbands will spend much time on all-day hobbies such as golf, fishing, 4×4 off-roading activities, which give them an excuse to be out of the house for many hours.
4. Cheating husbands often exhibit a change in their sexual behaviour towards their wives (ie more sex, less sex) and may make unexplained sexual requests. Many of our female clients who have older husbands notice an increase in the virility of their partners; this is probably due to their husbands’ newly acquired habit of taking Viagra.
5. The cheater’s relationship with the family will almost always change. He will tend to become more distant, cold or fault-finding.
6. Financial changes may become noticeable. Look for unexplained credit card charges or unusual withdrawals from the family’s bank account.
7. Grooming habits change. A cheating husband may buy a lot of new clothes, or may just suddenly start to become more attentive to his personal appearance. The wife may notice frequent bathing, more careful grooming, a new cologne, a new exercise regimen, etc.
8. Physical clues to the affair may start appearing, such as perfume odours on shirts or jackets, secretion stains on underwear. Or the wife may discover pieces of paper with notes or phone numbers, receipts, condoms, etc. True story: the wife stumbled on the truth when she noticed an unrecognised strand of hair from another female when our client swept the bedroom floor.
9. The husband’s driving patterns may change. The wife may find the car needs refuelling more often than before or she may monitor the car’s odometer and find the husband is putting in a lot of unexplained miles on the car. Or the opposite might be the case, ie the husband claims to have driven outstation but the mileage on the car is minimal. It is recommended that a concerned wife keeps track of the mileage on her husband’s car and even monitor the time he leaves for work and comes home. Keep a log, and note the times. We had a client who, in a similar fashion, used to check the condition of the husband’s golf clubs to see if the husband had actually been playing golf or not.
10. On occasion, the wife may notice her husband whispering into the phone. He may look alarmed when he sees her observing him and may hang up suddenly.
11. The wife may find unexplained, repetitive charges on her husband’s mobile phone bill. Often these will be calls her husband made right after leaving home in the morning and right before coming home in the evening. The mobile telephone bill is one of the best ways to catch a cheating husband.
Next week, we’ll look at how to spot a cheating wife. What’s sauce for gander, is sauce for the goose…
Introducing Midas, our new weekly columnist on crime, security, private investigation, urban survival skills and related matters. Midas is a private security and intelligence firm based in Kuala Lumpur. Its operatives include ex-military intelligence and ex-police personnel, ex-lawyers and civilian analysts. Leave your comments below, or direct your personal queries to [email protected]
* names have been changed for reasons of privacy