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How to Catch a Cheating Husband - Online or in Person

Updated on June 19, 2017
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After seeing many friends (or himself) seduced by love, only to crash and burn afterwards, Jorge writes advice based on his observations.

How Do I Catch My Husband Cheating?

Do you have a sinking feeling in your gut that something's not quite right in your relationship? Does your husband seem to be acting weird, and you can't help but wonder if he's cheating?

While irrational feelings of insecurity can come and go, if you have strong suspicions that your husband is cheating, then you might need to pursue some evidence--even if it's just for piece of mind. Catching your husband in the midst of a secret tryst can be painful, but it's a very direct way to know the exact truth. If you rely on his word alone, he could always just lie.

How do you catch him in the act, though?

It will take some careful planning, and it might make you paranoid, but it is possible learn what's going on if you follow the suggestions below.

Is he oddly secretive about his phone?
Is he oddly secretive about his phone?

How to Know If Your Husband is Cheating

First, you need to know for sure if your husband is cheating. Nobody wants to play detective against their own spouse, but you'll need to start collecting evidence (which we'll discuss in detail below). This could be:

  • Text messages or emails between your husband and the other woman.
  • Call logs between your husband and the person you suspect he is having an affair with.
  • The word of several witnesses that your husband was being inappropriate.
  • Your own eyes and ears if you happen to catch him cheating in person.

If you find strong second-hand evidence, avoid confronting him right away. Give yourself some time to breathe and think rationally. When you "catch" him, you will want to be able to think as clearly as you can, so that you can make the best long-term decision for yourself about the relationship.

Catch Your Husband Cheating Online - The Easiest Way to Collect Evidence

The first place you might want to look is online. Why? These days, privacy is just an illusion and people leave traces of their activity all over the place on the Internet. Take a hard, objective look at your husband's social media accounts (especially Facebook) and ask yourself:

  • Do you know his friends and followers? Have you ever met them? Are there strange women (or men, if you are a gay couple) who seem to constantly "like" and comment on his posts?
  • Does your husband seem oddly guarded about his social media profiles? Does he quickly change the tab or window when you walk in the room? Does he put his phone away when you look over his shoulder?
  • Whenever you catch a glimpse of your husband using the Internet, does he appear to be chatting with people you don't know? Does he act weird and defensive when you ask about it?
  • Have you noticed any weird messages in his email inbox (if you have access to it)? For example, is there a sign-up confirmation from a dating website?
  • Did you recently discover that your husband has social media profiles (like a second Facebook account) that he never told you about? This is a gigantic red flag. If he has done this, he is almost certainly cheating.

If you have a strong suspicion that your husband is having random encounters with other women, you can also catch him cheating by setting up your own online "trap" of sorts. This is not as easy to do if he's having an affair with a specific person, but it still might work if he's open to expanding his harem.

Try doing this, especially if you have discovered that he has an alternate profile that he was hiding from you:

  1. Go to a social media site that your husband tends to visit and make a fake account.
  2. Choose a profile picture of an attractive woman--but not too attractive. Make it realistic. If she looks like a model and your husband has more than a few brain cells, then he'll likely assume that you're a spammer and will not accept your friend request. It's much better to pick a nice-looking woman who just happens to be his type.
  3. Send him a friend request.
  4. Wait. You might also say "Hello" and offer a friendly greeting, or ask him if he knows a mutual friend (as an excuse for your friend request), but don't do anything else. Do not try to seduce him. As much as you may be tempted, don't offer him sex or flirt with him as this alternate profile. This is entrapment, and it's not very fair to him. Don't try to cajole him or push him into cheating. If he is cheating with random women online, he will make the first move.

If your husband is immediately flirtatious, then you know something is up. Play along a bit and see if he tries to take it further--again, do not initiate anything yourself. You could also ask him if he is married or in a relationship after you have talked for a little bit. If he says no, then obviously this is very damning.

You might not want to play the above game, and I wouldn't blame you. It's liable to make you feel a bit dirty, even if it will get to the truth faster. Also, your husband might not make any kind of move on your alter ego.

Still, your alternate profile could be useful in other ways. If he accepts your request on a hidden profile of his, you will have access to what he's been hiding from you. Look at his profile information and ask yourself:

  • Is his relationship status set to "single"? Does he not mention his status at all?
  • Are there no photos of you and him together on this profile?
  • Is it almost like you don't even exist? Does he never mention you at all?
  • What does his friends list look like? Visit the profiles of some of the women and see if you recognize them. Consider messaging some of the more suspicious ones and asking how they know him. Often, they will tell you the truth.
  • Does he overtly talk about his conquests on this profile? If he's smart, he probably wouldn't be this audacious--but he might not be as smart as you assumed. Lots of liars and cheaters, both men and women, make the stupid mistake of bragging about their deception online.
  • Does he have photos of himself canoodling with other women? Again, this would be very stupid of him to do, but people do this sometimes anyway. Obviously, this would be some of the strongest evidence of all.

When another woman's been playing with your husband's selfie stick.
When another woman's been playing with your husband's selfie stick.

Should You Snoop By Looking Through His Messages?

Don't just break into his account--this is not only illegal, but the ethics are questionable.

However, looking through his phone or computer if it is unlocked and he normally leaves it open is more of a gray area. Generally, if it's a casual non-marriage relationship, I would advise strongly against even this. People deserve their privacy, even if they leave themselves open to the snooping of others. If you really don't trust the person, then just dump them.

In a marriage, there's more at stake, though. Getting at the truth could mean the difference between living with a cheating husband for the rest of your life or going through a divorce. It's a tough situation and the truth is more important when half your assets are in the mix.

Keep in mind that this is a huge breach of trust and privacy on your part. It's not my place to judge you, however. If you strongly suspect that he may be cheating, it might be worth it to you just to find out.

If you decide that this is what you're going to do, do it once and do it fast:

  • Check his Facebook messages or his messages on other social media profiles. Often, you can search the messages for key words and it will save you time. Think of the kind of words that people send to lovers, and search for those.
  • Focus on the more suspicious people first. Do you already suspect that he's cheating with a specific person? Look at his messages to and from that person first.
  • Look to see if there are text messages from unknown numbers. Sometimes when cheaters are being sneaky, they will not name their "side pieces" in their contacts. Other times, they will give them a random innocuous name, like "Chinese Takeout." You get the idea. See if you can verify who the numbers belong to. Often, searching Facebook with the phone number will lead you to the person's profile. Searching Google can shed some light as well.

If you find anything suspicious, then follow through on it. After you have collected enough evidence, consider confronting your cheating husband and asking him to explain himself. If he can't, well...the rest is up to you.

Catching a Cheating Husband in Person

Another approach which can be quite a bit messy is to try to catch your cheating husband offline, while he goes about his daily activities. This means that you'll probably have to follow him to where you suspect the cheating is taking place.

Not only is this kind of stalkerish, but most people are terrible at being sneaky. Chances are, he will notice you if you follow him around. In cases like these, it's much better to hire a private investigator. A professional will do a much better job without alerting your husband of his presence.

Either way, make note of the following:

  • When is he most likely to feel that you aren't around? When does he have the best opportunity to cheat without getting caught?
  • Do you already suspect who he is cheating with? Consider keeping an eye on that person, especially if they don't know you. It is much easier to be stealth around someone who won't notice you.
  • Consider setting up a camera just outside your front door to see who is coming in and out of your house when you're not home. Avoid putting cameras inside the house; it can be difficult, but you must also balance people's privacy here.
  • Ask any trusted mutual friends if they've seen anything suspicious. Often people will cover for their friends, but just as often they might feel too guilty to keep their mouths shut after some prodding.

There are also some agencies that offer the questionable service of attempting to "test" your husband. Basically, you would hire a woman to try to attract your husband and see if he responds.

This is similar to a private investigator, except that they will actively bait the man into cheating. I do not suggest doing this, though. Again, this is entrapment, and hiring a professional seductress could induce your man to cheat even if he normally wouldn't. Men are sexual creatures. There is only so much temptation that we can take.

The best approach is not to test your husband. Just try to find the truth of what is already there, instead of creating more drama out of nothing.

Your Plan

Are You Planning to Catch Your Husband Cheating?

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We're just talking. No really. I've never seen her before in my life.
We're just talking. No really. I've never seen her before in my life.

What Do You Do When You Catch Him?

So finally, what happens if you do catch him cheating after all?

It's a tough call, and it's totally up to you. This article is about how to catch him cheating after all, and not what to do once you've discovered the awful truth.

Some people are able to forgive and move on, but a lot of people aren't. The breakdown of trust can be like black cloud that will follow you for the rest of the marriage. Should you plan to stick it out, give serious consideration to couple's therapy.

After all, if you don't uncover the underlying reasons as to why the cheating happened in the first place, your relationship might be doomed to repeat it.

Cheaters Never Prosper

Has your spouse ever cheated before?

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© 2017 Jorge Vamos

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    • dashingscorpio profile image

      dashingscorpio 2 months ago

      "While irrational feelings of insecurity can come and go, if you have strong suspicions that your husband is cheating, then you might need to pursue some evidence." - Why?

      Seriously the first thing one has to do is ask them self is whether or not cheating is a "deal breaker". If the answer is yes then leave.

      Truth of the matter is the minute you felt (you couldn't trust) your husband any longer the marriage was over.

      Know yourself, Love yourself, Trust yourself.

      Unless you have a history of being paranoid and insecure there is no reason to doubt your gut instinct. Assume you're right.

      Playing detective is more or less an ego exercise we go through in order to "show her/him" that we were "smart" enough to "catch them". You still must decide if you're going to stay or leave.

      Lets face it the reason why anyone suspects their mate is cheating is because they have somehow (changed) their routine or their behavior towards us which we dislike. Lets assume we're unable to "prove" they're cheating but the behavior remains.

      Odds are we're not going to suddenly jump for joy!

      We began our search because we believed cheating was the underlying reason for their change in behavior.

      If you're truly {unhappy} in your marriage it doesn't matter if they're cheating or not. Living with someone you don't trust is never a good thing. Truth is in many instances some people (need) to catch their spouse cheating in order to finally give themselves (permission) to walk away from an unhappy marriage.

      For them being "unhappy" just wasn't enough of a reason!