Extramarital affairs can take on many different forms. While most people think of infidelity in the traditional sense, an emotional affair can also take a serious toll on a marriage. This guide explains a few of the hallmarks of an emotional affair, so you can make the best decision for your mental and emotional well-being. 

Increases or decreases in sex drive 

One would naturally believe that an affair of any kind would lead to spouses engaging in less physical intimacy. And while that is certainly a red flag, the opposite can also take place. The spouse engaging in the emotional affair may be energized by the interaction, which can increase one’s sex drive in general. It may also be a means to distract the other spouse from suspicion or to assuage guilt. 

Your spouse is more secretive than before 

Some people prize their privacy more than others, which is perfectly acceptable. However, if your spouse is suddenly exhibiting increased secrecy, such as by password-protecting a device that was never secured before, an emotional affair could be to blame. You may also notice that your spouse keeps their phone on his or her person at all times. This is not necessarily a red flag if your spouse has always been protective of his or her privacy, but recent changes in behavior might warrant a closer look. 

Your relationship is suffering 

Most marriages have ebbs and flows, which is very natural. The problem arises when you feel that your partner is starting to withdraw from you, both physically and emotionally. You may spend less time together or there might be a lack of conversation when this was never an issue before. It is best to trust your gut in this case, especially if other problems are present.