22 Ways to Avoid Cheating On Your Spouse

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Cheating on your spouse doesn’t just happen by random magic. Almost all infidelity is preceded by decisions demonstrating poor boundaries around the marriage and the relationship between the spouses. These boundaries are critically important in protecting a marriage from destructive external influences: including infidelity.

Whether you’re trying to reestablish trust after cheating on your spouse, or you want to avoid having one in the first place, the following list will help put the proper precautions in place to protect your spouse, your children, your marriage, and even you from the tragic consequences of an affair.

22 Ways to Avoid Cheating On Your Spouse

1. Do not allow yourself to fantasize about romance and sex with other people besides your spouse. Remember that infidelity starts with your ability to redirect your thoughts long before you have a need to control your body. Thoughts are the seeds of infidelity planted in your marriage. When you entertain the idea of cheating in your mind and allow yourself to be excited or aroused by the prospect…you have taken the first of many steps toward betraying and harming your spouse. Thought processes become patterns. If you don’t consciously practice thought patterns that protect your marriage, then destructive patterns will take hold instead.  Have you ever had a thought of stealing something? Then, you think about the prospect of getting caught or being punished and you banish the thought from your mind, right? Or maybe you think about how being a thief is not the person you want to be and you banish the thought from your mind. Think of infidelity as emotional theft, with the same consequences to your life and character as any other kind of theft.

2.  Don’t drink alcohol with coworkers, acquaintances, or strangers of the opposite sex. Alcohol (or other recreational drugs) lowers inhibitions and creates a much greater risk of crossing marital boundaries.  So avoid going to venues without your spouse where alcohol and interaction with single people is encouraged….like bars, parties or gatherings after work hours.

3.  Do not flirt. Flirting is always sexual. Flirting is for the sole communication of your attraction to another person and should be reserved for your spouse. Each time you flirt with another person, you have taken another step towards infidelity. When someone flirts with you, discourage it and avoid that person because it is their intent to fill your need for admiration and encourage you to cheat on your spouse. All affairs begin with flirting, and there is no such thing as innocent flirtation.

4.  Assume you will get caught. Eventually almost everyone gets caught, and the pain and suffering it will cause your family is not worth the temporary ego boosting and pleasure. If you believe upfront that discovery is imminent, it will help you to resist the temptation. The smartest cheaters trip themselves up somewhere and give themselves away. The truth has a way of finding its way to the top, and has toppled some of the most powerful people in the world.

5.  Imagine that your spouse is an audience.  If he/she could hear and see everything you did throughout the day, how comfortable would you be? Imagine that your spouse is cc’d all of your emails, listening to your phone calls, or standing right beside you in your interactions with other people. How much harder would it be then to flirt or dismiss the pain you would cause by thoughtless actions?

6.  The workplace has become a minefield for infidelity.  Keep business interaction about business and in the office. Meet in groups whenever possible. Avoid out-of-the-office meetings where you’ll be alone with opposite sex colleagues. Avoid those same kinds of meetings in restaurants, bars, and especially private rooms. Avoid car rides alone with coworkers. Don’t offer a ride to others and don’t accept rides from them. Cars offer a level of privacy that is full of temptation.

7.  Touch is very powerful human interaction, and casual contact is often used as a form of flirting to create sexual tension as well as communicate attraction.  Hugs and kisses should be reserved for your spouse only, not wasted on casual greetings easily misunderstood. Resting your hand on a shoulder or forearm, holding a hand a little longer than necessary, massaging a neck, even patting someone’s back can all be an effort to subtly excite or arouse.

8.  Eye contact is another powerful flirting tool.  Research shows that long moments spent gazing into the eyes of the opposite sex creates powerful connections. For many people, that first long look is the absolute beginning of attraction. When a person becomes attracted to another, lingering eye contact plays a part in creating romantic feelings. The great thing is that spouses who take the time to gaze into each other’s eyes get a burst of romantic feelings. Do not hold long eye contact with someone other than your spouse, and if you catch someone staring at you or trying to make serious eye contact….understand their intentions and avoid them.

9.  Be honest with yourself about your budding attractions for other people.  If you are slightly attracted to someone else, or you find yourself looking forward to the next time you’ll see them again…recognize the temptation and the danger they pose for your marriage. Identify what needs that person may be meeting for you, and go home and work on getting that need met by your spouse.

10.  Avoid consistency in opposite sex conversations. If your conversations are developing a theme, favorite topic or inside jokes (especially those you don’t share with your spouse), then your communication is becoming more intimate and likely to fulfill needs your spouse should fill. Intimacy always begins with communication and increases with familiarity and comfort in communication.

11.  Don’t allow yourself to have a “special friend” at work or in your neighborhood…especially one that you’d rather keep to yourself or need to keep secret from your spouse.  Most workplace affairs begin with people who started out as “just friends.”  By nature, friendship is intimate, but opposite sex friendships can quickly move into the kind of intimacy that destroys marriages and families.

12.  One of the biggest steps toward infidelity you can possibly take is to confess your attraction to someone else.  It is the moment when the adultery train will really pick up speed. If you find yourself feeling more for someone than you should…do not tell them, because it’s like opening Pandora’s Box. Once you do this, or someone else confesses their feelings for you…you must take enormous precautions to end all contact because the risk for an affair is often unstoppable if you continue to see them.

13.  When you suspect that someone may be attracted to you…talk to him/her about your spouse and children.  Express your commitment to your family and your marriage and encourage their commitment by asking about their family as well. It’s very hard for married people to flirt when they’re discussing their children.

14.  Get to know the spouses and children of the people you work with or interact with the most.  It’s much harder to betray others when you care about them and see them as real.

15.  As much as possible, surround yourself with happily married couples that are friends of your marriage and support your relationship.

16.  Avoid friendships with people who are cheaters, enable cheating, or encourage you to cheat.  The friends you want in your life are the ones who will support you in the most ethical and empowering parts of your life.

17.  Show commitment to your spouse daily.  Doing special things for your spouse reminds you of what they mean to you. Leave a sweet note. Call them and connect throughout your day. Make a date to take them somewhere. Think of new things to do together. Focus on the special things your spouse does for you instead of the little things others do to tempt you to cheat. Checking in with your spouse while you’re with other people demonstrates that you value your marriage.

18.  Spend as much recreational time with your spouse as possible, and no recreational time with other members of the opposite sex.  When you share your most enjoyable activities with other people, you put your marriage at risk and rob your spouse of the enjoyment you deserve together.

19.  Wear your wedding ring at all times.  Many people won’t honor that symbol of your marital status, but it is a reminder to you…not them…of your covenant with your spouse.

20.  Open your life to your spouse.  Let your spouse into all areas of your life, both figuratively and literally. If your spouse has access to all parts of your life, including your phone, computer and finances…it’s much harder to hide an affair. Affairs need secrecy, so the more transparent you are…the lower the risk for infidelity. Give your spouse the passwords and security codes that keeping from them could allow you to hide risky behavior or affairs.

21.  Stop paying attention to the ways that Hollywood romanticizes affairs and start paying attention to the news!  Look at the men and women on the news who have had their careers and lives changed because of infidelity. Look at the tragic consequences for everyone involved and start believing the facts instead of the fantasy. Affairs have the potential to create shame, disgrace and destruction no matter how long it takes for the truth to come out.

22.  Treat yourself well everyday by imagining who you want to be and how you want to be remembered. Think about the man or woman you want your children to become and strive to be the best person to model themselves after. What we feed grows….so feed your character, integrity and spirituality.

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15 Responses to 22 Ways to Avoid Cheating On Your Spouse

  1. chidiebere Nwachukwu says:

    We should also embrace trust, understanding and love

  2. Rosemary says:

    People often think these ideas don’t apply to them because they love their spouses, are strong-willed, would never cheat, etc., etc. Over the years I have known a few people who thought that and yet ended up ruining their marriages and hating themselves.

    If all these rules seem like too much, #5 will probably do the trick.

  3. Tim says:

    I think it is also necessary to really be honest with yourself, in terms of your motivation. It isn’t so much about having contact with a member of the opposite sex, as what your intent, or desire is. If you find yourself looking forward to it, if you find yourself thinking of ways to develop it, if you find yourself rationalizing about it, then you are probably on the road to trouble. Of course, this assumes the target of your interest shares a similiar interest in you. Wasn’t the case in my situation. All I did was introduce myself, and poof!, they were gone. Probably saved me a lot of trouble down the road, but we will never know, and it still sucks, just the same.

  4. B says:

    I am seriously struggling to stay faithful. My body is sending me unbearably strong urges. It feels awful and I don’t know how long I can hold it together. I’m 31, male and my testosterone is just driving me crazy and telling me to do things. It is so so hard to resist :(

    • Sounds like you’re sending out a red alert! Please come join us on the forums at Marriageadvocates.com. The best outcome would be that you and your wife resolve the problem between you. We can help with that. You might not believe that’s possible at this point, but don’t lose heart!

      Besides, what have you got to lose that doesn’t seem lost already? Hope you will join us.

  5. sudi says:

    I am in a very critical condition. I am staying separately from my spouse rt now. I have got lonely. In between I met somebody and started chatting. Over chats we r getting close slowly. I am getting drawn to him. We haven’t been physical yet not in chat also. But we are leading towards it and have gone vulnerable. I just want to stop it now. Don’t know how. I have equally participated on dis. What to do

    • You are wise to realize you are vulnerable. The question is, why are you living separately from your husband? Are you having trouble in your marriage, or is one of you away on business?

      This will become a total disaster if you don’t break off all contact with this man TODAY. That will be very difficult, but will become harder the longer you wait. Please join us on the forums…there will be people who can help you there. Go to Marriageadvocates.com. And hurry!

  6. Christina says:

    I had an affair with a co-worker 7 years ago & it almost ruined my marriage. Since then I have quit that job & my husband has forgiven me. At this time, I have a new job & new set of co-workers. A very familiar scene is playing again with a male co-worker. He’s been flirting, touching my arms & has invited me out for lunch/drinks. He had told me that his wife & him don’t spend a lot of “time together.” I took the opportunity to talk about his child, wife & Christ. He has since changed his tune & doesn’t do all those things anymore. Honestly, I do miss the attention & feel terrible feeling like that. I think “what is wrong with me?!” I have found myself thinking about him & feeling sad when he’s not around. I’ve tried my best to avoid situations with this particular co-worker but in my mind I’m fighting the temptation to care about him. We have a business trip coming up & I worry about how strong I will be if my feelings take over. I ask for prayers for the strength to avoid temptation, especially during my trip. Thank you.

    • Christina, you were given the gift of forgiveness by your husband. PLEASE do not drag him through that hell again. Better for you to figure out why his love isn’t enough approval for you. Why you would throw away a (presumably) good man and your marriage for the attentions of a man would be perfectly OK with sleeping with a married woman and destroying her marriage? Sounds like a great guy. Not.

      I suggest three things:
      1) Stop talking to this guy! He’s poison. It will cost you your self respect for sure, and most likely, your marriage. Reach down and grab your strength, girl.
      2) Do what you have to to get out of that trip.
      3) Tell you husband what you need from him. Don’t look for it elsewhere if you want to remain married.
      You have to choose.

      Actually, four things. Join us on the Marriage Advocates forums: http://www.marriageadvocates.com/ubbthreads/ubbthreads.php/forum_summary? Start with the “Register User” button near the top of the page. (Don’t use your real name as a screen name!) you’ll find folks there who have had the same struggles. They are willing to help, and it won’t cost you a dime.

      Please consider what you’re risking before you make the same mistake you regretted the first time you made it…

  7. Al says:

    I think you ought to have a 23 :

    23. Dress appropriately for friends : People tend to relax how they dress when they are on the home front. This can lead to a slippery slope of intimate meetings with a potential affair partner. In some cases without even intending it. Do not meet friends in your pajamas if they visit your home. If you go out greet your neighbors, do so in the same clothing you would wear out to in public. Dress in public to look and feel comfortable, while at the same time not sending the messages that you may be available, or wearing clothes that otherwise might provoke interest from the opposite sex.

  8. IH says:

    Sometimes “the obvious” is the easiest to dismiss…I have cheated on my wife and feel terrible. She is the best thing that has happened to me and we’ve been together for 12 years. I feel like I failed myself and failed my marriage. She is understanding and forgiving but not crazy. I am afraid that the trust lost is going to be EXTREMELY difficult to regain but for me it is worth every bit of work that I have to put forth. I THOUGHT that I was a “good husband” but today I realize that I have a long way to go…I’m working on changing myself because it’s one thing to “get caught” – but it’s another thing to truly be sorry and want to be a better person for your spouse.

    • You’re wise to see that you’ve failed yourself as we’ll as your wife and your marriage, IH. The transgression doesn’t have to define you, though. You can repair the broken trust by refocusing on your wife, who has offered the gift of forgiveness. Repay her with complete transparency. Don’t just TELL her you’re sorry — SHOW her. Let her into every facet of your life to show her there are no more dangerous secrets in it. Have absolutely no contact with your affair partner, ever again. Tell her where you’re going, and be in that place when she checks. EXPECT her to check–she needs to catch you doing the right things.

      Answer her questions about your affair honestly, because if you tell even one lie and she finds out it’s a lie (that does have a way of happening), she might just decide that she made a mistake forgiving you.

      I see you’ve just registered on Marriageadvocates.com — I’ll see you over there. In fact, you’ll find lots more advice and support from a lot of people who’ve “been there,done that.”

  9. mfad says:

    My husband cheated on me the second time by joining a dating site where he got entangled with prostitute and some single girls. He feels sorry and promise it won’t happen again but am finding it difficult trust him yet still loves him.

    • This is the second time he’s done this? And he says he’s sorry? It will take more than words–he’ll need to show you he’s sorry and ready to be a good husband. Before you should trust him again, he needs to show he is trustworthy. Like being home at night, instead of out finding girls! Like giving you access to his cell phone and email so you can SEE the truth about what he’s doing. If he’s sincere about being sorry, he won’t object. If he objects, he’s not ready to give up his double life.

      Ask him if he will let you look at his phone and email whenever you like. Ask him if he will offer proof for where he is when he cannot be with you. Tell him you want those things, and see what he does. You’ll have your answer.

  10. July says:

    I have recently have thoughts of having an intimate relationship with a co-worker, my husband is currently away and I feel so lonely sometimes. I have worked with this co-worker for a year now and it seems that our conversations sometimes get too intimate, I once got in his car while I was drunk and while he was taking me home thoughts just kept running through my head, luckily I managed to resist and look at my wedding ring and band, it helped because it manage to make me think about our vows. This article really helped, I don’t want to cheat on my husband, and he loves me so much I am a very lucky person to have him. So I will try these tips, until he comes back. Thank you!

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