Each week, I meet with couples who are trying to save their marriage. Some of them have a better chance of surviving than others.
Increasingly, I meet with wives and girlfriends who go to great lengths to keep an eye on their husbands and fiancés. One fiancée told me, “I know he’s cheating. He’s a liar. I know he’s cheating. He’s a liar. If he’s cheating, our engagement is over!”
Wha….? Didn’t she say out loud: “I know he’s cheating?”
I received a recent letter from another woman who hid in the back seat of her husband’s SUV when he left the house so she would know if he was meeting up with another woman.
She eventually discovered he was cheating, but that was after she had ruined her relationships with her close friends and some family members in the process. The efforts she made to sneak and spy on her husband put a lot of pressure on everyone around her.
My motto is simple: You can’t stay with someone you can’t trust.
Eventually, it destroys you because you can’t concentrate. You are a nervous wreck with anxiety and you lose yourself in the process. While you are spying on your mate, you are being robbed of who you are.
Women find inventive ways to discover if their man is cheating. Keeping an eye on a cheater is exhausting, demeaning and it can destroy you emotionally and physically. If you want to know if his cheating has made you lose your mind, take a look at the 10 examples below.
- You check his cell phone. You sneak looks at text messages and listen to his voice mail messages. If his phone rings, you will answer it. After all, even if the caller ID is a man’s name, that could be a code name for a woman, right?
- You solicit your friends and relatives to help you keep an eye on him and give you frequent updates. The Army calls this a situational report or a SITREP. Your family and friends will soon grow tired of this and start avoiding you. This will put a strain on your relationship with everyone.
- You demand access to all of his social network accounts and you check them regularly. You know every username and password to all of his accounts. If for some reason he changes them, you will stop at nothing to figure them out on your own. You question him about his female friends, who they are, how did he meet them, or has he hooked up with them etc. You are the checker and you will soon be exhausted.
- You send friend requests to his female friends and send them direct messages asking them “Who are you?” and “How do you know my man?” You lose cool points doing this. Think about it: You are letting the other woman know how insecure you are. If she’s a trouble maker, then she will stop at nothing to get under your skin every chance she gets.
- You check the history on his computer. You know the websites he visits, his email history etc. You work tirelessly to try and pull up the original message. Your suspicions are right and you know he is having conversations with other women and it’s driving you insane. But every new discovery sends you deeper and deeper into a hole. You are stuck. So you do nothing but scream at him and find more incriminating evidence.
- You rent cars or use someone else’s car to follow him so you can keep an eye on him. At this point, you are at the brink of insanity. Spending your hard-earned money and going into debt to rent a car to follow your man. You are losing it.
- You miss work, school or other important activities just to check out and verify information and stories that your man has told you. You have to know if he is telling you the truth. You want answers. You call his friends, his family and his co-workers to see if they will verify his alibi. Visiting other people and making phone calls can take all day. Who has time to go to work or school when they have important tasks like these that need to be handled?
- Keeping an eye on him is making you sick ... literally. You have headaches and anxiety. You can’t sleep and you can’t eat. You are losing weight. Your hair is falling out and you are having other medical problems too. You are risking your own health trying to keep up with this guy. Make sure you visit your primary care physician often. You will need a prescription for medication very soon.
- “Chill Out!" This is what your friends and family are asking you to do. Everyone knows you are going too far, but you won’t listen to them. They love you and they are very concerned about your well-being. They say to you “leave him alone and find a man who will be faithful to you." However, you think that if you can keep an eye on him, this will fix the problem.
- You are not the same person that you used to be before you started this relationship. You have changed greatly. You used to be a positive person who had a great outlook on life and your future. Now you are negative, paranoid and suspicious of everyone. Your family and friends avoid you because your behavior bothers them so much. You have lost everything including your job. His cheating has made you lose your mind.
If you recognized yourself in any of these signs, you would benefit from seeking help. Military OneSource (1-800-342-9647) can help you find a local therapist. The Military and Family Life Counseling (MFLC) program can connect you with a counselor in your area to provide short-term counseling at no cost to you.
Stop driving yourself crazy over his cheating heart and star moving forward.
-- Ms. Vicki