Knowing what motivates an extra marital affair can be the key to preventing it. Although some people are born with unfaithful blood in their bones and will stray no matter how hard you try, others display the signs as a cry for help before dipping their toes into forbidden territory.

Spotting the difference between these two species can be difficult however a good indicator is your first months together as a partner that is truly falling in love will never think to look elsewhere, whereas one that always sees the grass as greener will be lining up other potentials even as they propose.

Attention seekers are often guilty of affairs too, as when the relationship settles and they no longer feel that buzz, they’ll seek attention from outside sources. That aside, there are ways to make sure it doesn’t happen to you, as prevention is always better than the cure.

Is there a reason to escape?

Most couples and families are finding everyday life difficult as household bills increase and many people find themselves in debt. If you’re living in a world where you daren’t answer the phone or open letters, an extra marital affair can seem like a great way to forget everything for a little while. The worst thing couples can do is to ignore the situation. Instead work out a plan together so you know there is light at the end of the tunnel.

Is anything unsaid?

Unresolved issues can have catastrophic effects on a marriage, as couples skirt around problems never revealing their true feelings for fear of upsetting the apple cart. No matter how big or small the problem, or how old or irrelevant it is, clearing the air is one sure way to make sure you retain the bond you’ve always had.

Are they no longer no.1?

It’s easy to put your partner lower down on the priority list when children and careers take over. We assume as they’re adults and capable of taking care of themselves that they’ll understand this shift. However, your partner was probably present before children and career advancements, and they will remember fondly the times when you thought the sun wouldn’t rise without them. Of course children need love and round the clock care, but at some point they will fly the nest leaving you two alone again. Would you rather be alone at this point as your partner has left to find someone who puts their needs first, or would you relish the thought knowing you can finally do all the things together you couldn’t with children present?

Have they had a knock in confidence?

A demotion at work, losing a job, gaining weight, getting older or making a silly mistake can give your partner a knock in confidence, leaving a hole to be filled by someone who makes them feel special and worthwhile. If recent events have hinted at this, try boosting their confidence focusing on their abilities as a lover, parent, or person. Letting them know that despite the event, you couldn’t live without them.

Have you let yourself go?

There’s no better feeling than finding a partner you feel truly comfortable with. Being able to curl up in a tatty nightie and bunny slippers without makeup is a truly lovely sensation, yet if this happens every day and night and you forget when you last wore lipstick or shaved your legs, ask yourself how you’d feel faced with a man with a full beard and body odour to sink a thousand ships.

Is Sex at a Stalemate?

When we first meet the love of our lives the passion we feel overrides any concerns about how good in bed we, or they, are. As sex settles into a pattern, partners can become selfish and sometimes forget that great sex is all about pleasuring the other person (trusting you’ll get the same in return). Great sex happens when people constantly explore and enter new territories, find out more about how to please their partner and try hard to stay away from that stalemate feeling. All couples understand that stress can get in the way of sex, children and careers also play a big part. Dips in sex drive are natural. The problems arise when nothing seems to be improving, when sex seems the same as it did when you met and nothing has been learned along the way.

Of course, telling anyone that you’d like better sex is difficult and if this is a conversation you’ve been playing over and over in your head, you may just succumb to the charms of another when they offer mind blowing sex. This is, of course, a shame, as great sex, incredible sex comes when two people really trust and love each other to hand themselves over to the other 100%.

Is Someone Else Meeting Your Needs?

Our partners are the first people we run to when we’re having a bad day or have news. Sometimes, our best friends fill this gap. If you find though, that your partner isn’t the first person you want to talk to when you’re having a bad day, you may be at risk of an affair. If you’re seeking comfort outside of your marriage for everyday problems, it may be because you feel your partner doesn’t care or isn’t interested. This in turn could lead you to find comfort from another source.

These risks apply to both men and women, we are all at risk of an affair, no one is immune. Sometimes an affair can be the deciding factor you need to say goodbye to a toxic relationship. More often than not though, partners regret their actions afterwards. Consider the consequences and think of the reasons you may be at risk of an affair then try to communicate with your partner first. Whether your partner forgives an affair or not, you should always consider it as the end of a relationship if it happens.