Gross but true: Men can — and will — try to get in a relationship with you when they’re openly and obviously married. I should know; it happened to me.
But what about if he wants to date you so bad he’s willing to take off his ring and lie about it so you’ll agree to a drink?
That’s where these 11 tell-tale signs come into play. If he’s doing these things, sorry gals, he’s probably got a wife at home and you need to say sayonara STAT. (And don’t forget the Golden Rule: no paperwork — meaning divorce papers — means no play.)
#1. He told you he was married.
This is obvious, right? Nope! Some women (including me at one point) believe that if a guy is separated or “going through a divorce,” then it’s fair game. Spoiler alert: It’s not. If there’s no paperwork, there shouldn’t be a romantic relationship. Period. And even if he’s in the throes of divorce, there’s a very good chance he and his wife may decide to work it out. So your best bet, if he’s truly separated, is to give him time after the divorce is final to heal and enjoy his new single status before rushing in to make it official.
#2. You can’t ever stay over at his place.
I knew a guy who juggled a live-in fiancée and a girlfriend who lived about an hour away for two years. He came up with every story imaginable, from claming his place was too far away to making up a fictional alcoholic father who was living in the house. Also start scratching your head if you discover you can only stay over on certain nights, as it may suggest a wife or girlfriend who travels for work.
#3. He always wants to come over your house.
This isn’t just about logistics; it’s also about guilt. If a guy wants to come over to your house more often than not, then he’s afraid of being caught by either you or the wife. Women leave subtle clues to their presence (bobby pins, earrings, ponytail holders, etc.) which are relatively unseen by men but super-obvious to women. Men are aware of this fact, so they mitigate that risk by simply never allowing you to sleep over.
#4. The only dates you go on are very casual.
Think carefully about the dates you two have been on. Have you found that you’re hanging out a lot at bars or in group settings? This is a red flag for many reasons, most importantly because a night hanging out with his friends is much different than being asked to an intimate dinner. One’s a date, one’s not. Plus, if the story were to ever get back to his wife, he’d rather cop to sharing beers with a large group of people versus feeding you crème brûlée at a five-star hotel.
#5. He has a tan line where his wedding ring should be.
You’d be surprised how many men don’t wear rings at all these days. You’d also be surprised how many of them slip them in their pockets when they leave the house. If you see an indentation or tan line on his ring finger, leave him alone.
#6. Every date he takes you on is very last-minute.
Sure, some men legitimately don’t know how to plan in advance, but if your guy plans things at the last minute every time you go on a date, you’re his second (or third) priority. Sorry.
#7. Your name isn’t saved in his phone.
When he’s away from his phone (which will be rarely if he’s two-timing you), call it to see what he has your number saved as. If your name’s saved under something like “Chinese Food” or a random guy’s name like “Mark,” then you’re being hidden, literally and figuratively.
#8. He is always doing “family activities.”
One excuse married men try to use to no end is their children. No woman wants to be accused of being insensitive to time he spends with his kids, which is why it’s the perfect excuse. If he’s constantly canceling plans to run home because Johnny Jr. lost the hamster again, it’s time to think about who else is waiting for his arrival.
#9. You haven’t met any of his friends.
There’s an old saying that even mistresses meet mama. So in this case, take a cue from his friends. If you’re not meeting them at all, there’s a problem. And even if you do meet them, keep track of who they are. If you’re only being introduced to friends who pre-date the marriage or you’re only meeting his guy friends from college sans wives, they might be in on his infidelity.
#10. His voicemails to you are super-professional.
Does he leave his first and last name when leaving you a message, as if you’re a work colleague or professional contact? It might be because someone’s in the room with him (ahem, a wife) when he’s leaving it.
#11. He has an unusual opinion on your romantic future.
People hear what they want to hear, so it’s easy to miss this one. Has he referenced the kind of man you’ll marry in your future (that’s nothing like him)? Does he encourage you to date other guys? This is a sign that he’s married and plans to stay married. Men who are committed to you aren’t afraid to talk about your future together — because that future includes him in it!