Flirting may be a harmless thing, ranging from lingering looks and charming smiles to lively banter. However, it can progress to cheating if done too often and with the same woman. To prevent this, you need to know how to tell if your husband is flirting with another woman.
Here are some basic signs to watch out for (we’ll discuss each one in a bit):
- He holds eye contact with another woman longer than necessary. Or if he normally doesn’t look someone in the eye when talking to them.
- Is he smiling too much? That means he’s trying to be charming.
- Intentional violation of a woman’s personal space.
- Body contact, no matter how innocent or fleeting.
- The other woman reacts to him in more than a friendly or courteous manner.
Is Your Husband Flirting with Another Woman?
Note: Remember that I don’t know you, your husband or your marriage. The advice here should always be taken in context. If you’d like to look more at your marriage specifically then take the marriage assessment quiz.
When inclined, men will flirt whether or not the wife is present.
It can be easy to spot the behavior if he does it when you’re around. After all, you were at the receiving end of it once upon a time.
You may or may not remember that charming guy who attracted your attention eons ago. So, let’s jog your memory.
When He’s with You
Does your husband send lingering looks to a particular woman several times? This could mean he’s trying to catch her eye. And upon making eye contact, does he instantly deliver his most disarming smile? That could be the confirmation he’s flirting.
Before reaching this conclusion, watch his next steps. Maybe the other woman is an old friend, former colleague, or high school classmate. In this case, they will probably engage in conversation, and introductions will follow.
This brings us to the next sign that your husband is interested in someone else. Notice how he behaves when the two of you are out with other people. If his attention rivets to one woman, you must pay attention as well. Is she just talking about politics or the bullying issue at the kids’ school, and is he simply being polite?
However, if he becomes oblivious to the world, and to you, then he’s definitely interested in her. Deal with the situation by joining their conversation. Not acknowledging your ideas, or making you feel unwelcome, means he wants uninterrupted focus on her.
Where strangers are concerned, staring at other women is quite common for men, even married ones. To be fair, married women also stare at other men. This is mostly meaningless, particularly if the object of admiration has above-average looks.
But if it is becoming all too regular with your husband and one particular woman, he may have other things in mind, like thinking about taking it to the next level. That level, of course, is flirting.
When He’s at Work
If you haven’t seen it already, I have a complete guide on signs your husband is cheating with a coworker. If you have a reason to suspect this is happening, there are some signs specific to the workplace.
Indeed, it is much more difficult to know if your husband is interested in someone else especially when she is his co-worker. But you must be alert to the signs because office flirting, if not nipped in the bud, can turn into a full-blown affair. Not only are they together more hours than you two are, but the first clues can be too subtle to recognize as well. You don’t have to go all out and become the next Sherlock Holmes. The sign will all be there; you just need to know what to look out for.
Grooming is where the first changes always happen. Getting a new haircut, starting to wear perfume, or upgrading his wardrobe should all trigger warning bells. Unless he’s gunning for a promotion.
New hobbies and interests are also a cause for alarm. If your couch potato husband suddenly decides waking up 30 minutes earlier to jog is a great idea, you must wonder. Ditto with the TV shows he’s recently been watching and the books he just purchased.
When He’s Online
Social media is a stealth way for your husband to conveniently flirt and get to know more about the woman he is interested in. Fortunately, the same goes for you, in terms of being a sleuth.
Tech-savvy guys know their actions on Facebook and Instagram leave time stamps and action footprints. If they change passwords on your shared accounts without informing you, that is an indication of a cover-up. Be wary when it happens.
The cellphone is the easiest way your husband can engage with a woman he’s interested in. While respecting individual privacy is one of the hallmarks of a good marriage, there comes a time it must be invaded. And yours is when your man has exhibited one or more of the above-mentioned deeds.
Check the call logs and text archives. Empty ones may indicate he has deleted incriminating evidence and is a red flag. So is not answering phone calls when he’s with you or going outside to take them.
Why Is My Husband Flirting With Another Woman?
The good news is, not all flirting is bad. Research shows that some married men do so for self-esteem or to strengthen their marriage.
While this may sound counterproductive, it’s an intriguing perspective worth investigating.
He Needs an Ego Boost to Affirm His Masculinity
Sometimes, a wife becomes more successful than her husband. Her love for him may remain unchanged, but it cannot always assuage his deflated ego.
In this situation, he may resort to flirting just to make sure his market value is still high. And what better way than being attractive to a virtual stranger?
He Wants to Pump Desire into the Monotonous Marriage
Whether consciously or subconsciously, some married men will flirt with other women to bring excitement from the innocuous act back to the marital bedroom.
Others take it a step further by leaving breadcrumbs for their wife to follow. Being found out leads to a fight, which in turn leads to making up and rekindling the romance in the relationship.
The not-so-good news is that flirting can be a sign of serious issues within the marriage.
Sex Has Gone to the City
Members of the old boys’ club believe that the basic needs of a man are food, water, and sex. They could be right.
The basic instincts of all living species are survival and propagation. Women have a better and sustained chance at fulfilling the latter because they get pregnant and give birth. Men, on the other hand, can only contribute their sperm, and only during the act of making love.
This could very well be the reason wives can go for long periods without having sex, but husbands can’t. Unfortunately, the pull of this basic instinct is very strong in some men. A few can be satisfied with simple flirting, but others flirt with the hope of scaling up.
Sadly, this incompatibility in sexual needs can prompt a married man to flirt with another woman.
Missing the Relationship
After marriage, kids arrive, and careers take off. Amid the hustle and bustle of parenthood, mortgage payments, and work commitments, the husband-and-wife relationship takes a back seat.
A lot of men consider the wife as their best friend. And if she ceases to be such, he turns to a different woman. Flirting may be a part of it, but it’s more about friendship rather than infidelity.
A Means to an End
There are a few men who have gone through life getting what they want by using their good looks.
They may carry this behavior into adulthood. Clinching a promotion or a big discount on a car purchase are just two examples where they use flirting to get their way.
Just for Fun
Being a husband and father is no mean feat. But a man needs a good time now and then with people outside the family circle.
While Saturday nights with the boys are the best option, time and budget may not allow it. Thus, a husband will settle for flirting with a co-worker. She’s there, and it’s free.
How Do I React When My Husband Flirts?
If you’ve made it this far, chances are, you already have suspicions, or may have even caught him in the act. What now?
Assess the situation first. Flirting with another woman is a breach of trust on your husband’s part. But confrontation right off the bat may do more harm than good, especially if you have no proof of infidelity.
Collect your evidence, then talk directly to your spouse. Avoid involving the third party in this conversation. Your objective is to find out if there is a problem and to solve it together. Keeping it private will make this possible.
However, make sure you are calm during this dialogue. When emotions are high, the likelihood of arguments or a fight is high, too.
Find out his reasons for engaging in a flirtation. Listen to his explanation and keep an open mind.
While much of the advice on this website may help you heal, move on, and repair your marriage, remember that each relationship is unique. In terms of flirting, what may be construed as harmless in one could be seen as alarming in another.
Therefore, always take any advice whether it’s from me or someone else, in the context of your marriage. At the end of the day, a great marriage isn’t great because it has no problems. It is great because both partners care enough about the other to want to make it work.