11 Signs He’s Mentally Cheating On You

We know about physical cheating and emotional cheating but there’s something much more insidious that can be happening to you. Your partner could be mentally cheating on you and it’s just as hurtful. Do these things sound familiar?

  1. Your boyfriend seems distant. If he regularly seems like he’s with you in body but not in spirit, it could be that his mind’s on someone else. This is especially the case if his eyes always seem to glaze over when you speak or he moves them down to where his phone’s lying on the table.
  2. He’s a big talker. Maybe not with you, but he spends a lot of time chatting with other people on social media or via text. Perhaps he’s chatting to other women to feel out what’s out there. It’s his way of keeping his options open, but if he’s supposedly in a relationship with you, then the guy’s betraying you. Call it mental cheating or micro-cheating, but it’s a betrayal either way.
  3. He puts restrictions on your relationship. When talking to him about love and relationships, you might find that he’s quick to place restrictions on your potential future together. For example, he might say he doesn’t believe in love or he’s not really sure if he wants anything long-term. These can be signs that he has someone else on his mind.
  4. He has mentionitis. Of course, if he mentions another woman’s name a lot, it could be because he’s already emotionally or physically cheating on you. It could also mean that he’s mentally cheating. At this stage, he’s thinking about her so much he can’t help but mention her to you. He hasn’t done anything like confide in her, flirt with her, or have sex with her… yet.
  5. You can see the attraction. Maybe she’s his friend or co-worker and you’ve seen them in the same room together. You felt the sparks fly between them to the point where you felt uncomfortable and betrayed even though he hardly looked her way. What gives? Maybe you’re sensing that something’s up between them. It could be a mutual attraction neither of them has actually acknowledged or confessed to, but you can feel it.
  6. He’s working on himself. In his mind, he has to make changes to himself and his life in order to attract the next woman (or the one who’s on his mind). To do this, hhe might change his appearance in quite a surprising way, start wearing blue even though he never liked the color, or hit the gym five times a week instead of spending time with you.
  7. He’s become more private. You don’t have to gain access to his private Facebook messages to be able to trust him (that’s just OTT), but you should feel like he’s open about his life. If you feel like he could give you a little bit more info when it comes to his life and thoughts, that’s a red flag. If he’s that closed up with you, who’s to say he’s not thinking of opening up to someone else (or doing it already)?
  8. He window shops… a lot. Everyone will check out an attractive person, even when they’re in a relationship and it doesn’t have to be a big deal. But it is a problem if your guy’s always checking out other women even when he knows you’ve caught him in the act. Such blatant interest in another person who’s right in front of you feels like a betrayal and it could be a sign that bigger trouble is on the way.
  9. He behaves differently around you. He might have told you that he likes you but when you see him around other women, you can clearly see that he treats you differently. He might seem more open and charming around them, whereas with you he’s always so mysterious and guarded. Or perhaps he’s more nervous around them, keen on impressing them, and he seems so comfortable with you that he’s practically in the friend zone. It’s this difference in behavior that can point to a guy who has his mind set elsewhere.
  10. He tells you how much he likes you but doesn’t act like it. A classic sign of a cheater is mixed or conflicting messages. He might tell you that you’re amazing and he can’t wait to see you this weekend, only to be on his phone the entire time you’re together. If his actions aren’t meeting his words, then something’s wrong and it’s in his head. He just doesn’t have his head in chasing you.
  11. He doesn’t want to connect on social media. Not everyone is obsessed with Facebook, but if your guy’s never keen to connect on any social media platform, perhaps saying that he’s not that keen on it yet you know for a fact that he has active accounts, it could be that he’s hoping to keep you away from other areas of his life. If there’s another woman who’s always interacting with him on social media, he might not want you to see that. A guy who doesn’t come across as open with you is never going to give you full access to his life, which makes you wonder who gets the rest of him that he doesn’t want you to see.
Giulia Simolo is a writer from Johannesburg, South Africa with a degree in English Language and Literature. She has been working as a journalist for more than a decade, writing for sites including AskMen, Native Interiors, and Live Eco. You can find out more about her on Facebook and LinkedIn, or follow her on Twitter @GiuliaSimolo.