I knew my husband was cheating when I found lipstick-stained cigarette butts in the back seat of my car

Tracey Folly

*this is a work of nonfiction based on actual events that I experienced personally

If you think your spouse or partner is being unfaithful, then you’re probably right.

I caught my husband cheating, and I decided to write about it. While my story does NOT have a happy outcome, it does offer the opportunity to learn from my mistakes.

One of the things I learned from the experience was this. If you think your spouse or partner is being unfaithful, then you’re probably right. That doesn’t mean you get to fly off the handle every time you see a sparkle in his eye or notice he’s wearing too much cologne.

You need more proof than that.

I’m not talking about accusing your significant other every time they come home late from the office or you have a bad dream.

I’m talking about those times you hear their phone ring and they glance at it suspiciously and put it back into their pocket like you didn’t even notice.

I’m talking about muffled late-night conversations when they think you’re asleep. You ask who’s calling, and your partner says it’s none of your business or “no one.”

And in my case, I’m talking about cherry red lipstick-stained cigarettes in the back of my car when I don’t even smoke.

It’s harder than most people think to catch a spouse or partner cheating. You may have already looked through phone records, reviewed credit card bills, and spent hours analyzing bizarre texts, yet nothing had proven that your suspicions were valid.

I know how you feel. You’ve spent hours analyzing random texts, checked your partner’s phone records, and reviewed credit card bills–all to no avail. Chances are, you’re feeling frustrated.

Being cheated on isn’t just about being eye’s witness to your significant other cheating. It’s about living with the question of your loved one’s fidelity and having to deal with the reality that they are probably being unfaithful, or at least, risking it.

Let’s face it, no one likes to have to worry about their spouse cheating. If your significant other goes on a trip for a couple of days, you’ll naturally question their fidelity, or whether or not they’re having an affair.

Having to deal with your spouse cheating is never easy. Whether they’re out of town for business or pleasure, it can be hard not to assume the worst.

If you are suspicious about your partner cheating, you may wonder if they’re really being faithful on their trips. Just because they are on a trip doesn’t mean you have to worry about cheating.

If your significant other is spending time away from you, you’re going to wonder what they’re doing! It’s completely rational no matter how long you’ve been together.

My husband took several vacations with his family while we were together, once while we were dating and once while we were married. I was not invited either time. In fact, I was specifically not invited.

“You are not invited,” my husband said when he told me about his plans.

On one of these occasions, his sister confided in me that she had caught him flirting with another woman at the pool. She and I were very close, and it had upset her terribly.

So you can imagine how I felt.

This is how I figured out that my husband was cheating on me and exactly how you too can pick up on the warning signs.

A true friend isn’t the person who will comfort you when things are great. A true friend will be there for you to lend a shoulder to cry on when you have something to worry about, like if your significant other is cheating on you.

So when I heard my best friend’s voice on my home answering machine after I returned from a one-week “break,” I was surprised. No, I hadn’t told her that my husband and I were having marital problems, and I hadn’t told her that I was spending the week with my mother. Therefore, it wasn’t all that strange to hear she had called me at home.

What was strange, however, was that her messages didn’t stop. Furthermore, they developed a pattern of asking someone to pick her up and give her rides while her car was in the shop, and at that point, she wasn’t talking to me anymore.

She was talking to my husband.

While I’ll be the first to admit that I never got proof positive they had an affair, but they did spend a lot of time together while I was gone. I don’t know whether it continued after I moved back in. It doesn’t matter. As far as I’m concerned she could have him.

Of course, so much time has passed since then. My husband and I divorced, and he passed away. It’s all moot now.

In parting, I will reveal what I find to be the strangest and least discreet sign that your significant partner is being unfaithful. Just as they say a criminal always returns to the scene of the crime, a cheating spouse always, or at least often, talks about the object of their affection.

Based on my own experience, cheaters usually mention the “other woman” in conversation (i.e. constantly talking about a new coworker or the clerk at the corner store). It’s almost like they get so excited about this new person in their life that they can’t contain it. So they talk about them to everyone they know, including their spouse.

Remember the cherry red lipstick stains on the cigarette butts left in the backseat of my car? They were proof that my husband was cheating on me.

My suspicions that he cheated on me on family vacations or took other opportunities to be unfaithful when I wasn’t around may only be suspicions, but on at least this one occasion, I turned out, unfortunately, to be right.

Cherry red lipstick girl and my husband had an affair.

He talked about her constantly.

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Writing about relationships online since 2009.

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