It's up there in a lot of our biggest fears: That we'll be sitting on the couch one evening watching TV while our significant other is texting, and when we take a peek at their screen, it turns out the conversation isn't just a platonic catch-up between friends. No, your partner is in fact concocting lustful messages, planning a great escape with this person they're now super into — and where does this leave you?
Luckily, or rather, hopefully, this is just a demented fantasy that won't actually put you to the test, and you can probably just stand to work on your own trust issues. Like, why would you think that's what they're doing when they're clearly just catching an old friend up on this week's episode of Insecure?! Stop being so paranoid!
But, since you are paranoid enough to have those thoughts even though you're super grateful nothing bad is happening in your relationship, we've collected some tales from around the internet of people who actually did catch their significant others cheating. Like, red-handed and mid-act.
Read on for 22 people whose lives and partnerships were turned around in a matter of seconds.
1. Need to borrow something real quick.
Two weeks ago I sent a message to a mutual friend asking to borrow a router. He didn't answer, but no worries he lives near by. I'll just stop by and grab it. I pull up to his house and start heading down the driveway. He has a long country driveway so it's a few seconds before I see my car (I drive a company vehicle during the day) already there.
My heart began to sink, but they are friends, and business partners, maybe it's nothing. I got out of my van and look up to see the other guy shirtless in his bedroom.
At this point my heart is down on my stomach and I am visibly shaking. I go in and immediately head upstairs. He is alone, now clothed. I say, "I came to borrow the router, also have you seen my wife? The car is here." He then proceeds to give the worst improv I've ever heard. "Huh? No, she was here at some point though." Whatever, I knew she was there I just wanted him to admit it.
I go down, take the router, and head back to the van where I finally encounter my wife topless trying to sneak around the side of his house.
And now here I am.
2. Oh, the apps...
I caught my ex thanks to Pokemon Go of all things.
She mentioned Pokemon Go was using lots of her data. I explained that in her settings she could see how much data an app was using. I proceeded to show her and proved to her it wasn't by pointing out Tinder was using much more data...
It was sad but also funny the way it went down.
3. Just needed to come straight to bed.
After a week visiting friends in London, England, I flew back to Canada. I was supposed to do something with another group of friends when I got back, but plans fell through so I drove the four hours home to the apartment we shared.
She expected me home at 6 p.m.... I'd been up for 30 straight hours and got home at 6 a.m., wanting nothing more than to fall into bed. There was an extra set of feet, attached to some [butt]hole, when I walked in.
4. My sister really needs her hoodie...
One night she told me not to come over because she wasn't feeling well. But then my sister wanted this hoodie back that she'd borrowed, so I thought I'd stop over with chocolate and a Slurpee. I knocked on her door. She came to the upstairs window with only a blanket wrapped around her. "I thought I told you not to come over!"
"My sister needs her hoodie."
"Who's that?" says some male voice from her bedroom.
"Ah. I see how it is."
"I'll talk to you tomorrow," she says.
"Probably not. Have a good one."
5. Careful around the techies.
Girlfriend ran over her phone by accident and destroyed the screen.
Asked me to backup all her stuff and transfer it to her new Pixel.
Use backup tool that captures all sorts of dirty messages and nudes with another guy...
6. Maybe she's still hiding in that bathroom.
Came back from a trip four hours early. Wife was supposed to be at work still. Opened the front door to see her sitting topless on the couch making out with a coworker.
He ran out the door; she ran into a bathroom and locked the door.
Sat on that couch for about an hour because I couldn’t think what else to do. Finally just up and left, so she could come out of the bathroom and put a shirt on.
7. Get the children out of there!
Had been on the road for work. Was supposed to be 10 days, got to go home a day early. Had a friend pick me up at the airport to surprise my wife and two children (2 years and 8 months). Walked in to my ex and her 'coffee friend' snuggling on the couch. With. My. Kids. In. The. Same. Room.
I was livid. Of course she denied everything. We split up weeks later.
8. What is it with all of these fake gal pals?
I got a new job with a cell phone company. Free phone for me, $15 a month for her. First bill comes in with call detail. She was on the phone an hour a day with this number while supposedly at work. I call, dude answers. I hang up. I ask her, she lies and said it was a gal pal of hers. I told her I know she is lying and call it again. Dude answers.
9. Very simple.
Found my wife's notebook. Written on the first page was a 10-step plan detailing how she was going to leave me for another guy.
I turned it into one step.
10. Do guys ever dress up to go out with other guys? Asking for a friend.
He was all dressed up just to go out with the guys, I looked down the street and saw her sitting in her car waiting for him. He picked a fight with me so he could storm out. I knew who she was from the naked picture I found.
11. That's one way to kick off the holidays.
I returned from work on Xmas Eve. We had tickets to a festival, which started the day before NYE and I couldn't find the tickets anywhere after seeing them the month before. I decided to double check the trash before we put it out for collection. I found a used condom... We lived on our own.
12. This is absolutely savage.
Okay so my ex was having computer problems and wanted to go on Facebook on my phone. No problem but I made her use Safari so I wouldn’t have to log out of the app. Anyways couple days later I’m closing tabs on my phone and there is her Facebook still open. Well I see she’s chatting with her ex, John. Turns out they banged in our bed and were gonna go out on a date soon.
So in the messages he asked [her to] “wear something nice.” I’m not the jealous type so I leave it for a couple days. Couple days go by and she wants to have sex... Well we are kissing and getting hot and heavy. I whisper in her ear, “Don’t forget John wants you to wear something nice on your date Saturday”
The look of horror in her eyes was magical.
I put my shirt on and start walking out as she’s crying and saying she’s sorry.
13. Paranormal much?
Woke up in the night with a bad feeling, got out of bed and found my brother [banging] my wife.
Short version is that I woke up in the middle of the night very suddenly, and sat up bolt upright, with the strong feeling that something was wrong. I listened intently, but could hear nothing. I looked at my dog, who was a very good watch dog, and he was curled up asleep. I got up and dressed, and tried to see if I could smell smoke or hear anything from the street.
I got up and walked through the building I was living in, everything was silent and exactly as normal, but the feeling of what I can only describe as dread and near panic was getting stronger. I went through the building to where my wife had her own space, because she was the first person I wanted to check. Her light was on and her bed was still made. The room was empty. The feeling was getting stronger by the moment. I then went to check on my brother. I could really feel that something was terribly wrong.
That's when I caught my brother and my wife having sex.
14. This is like getting cheated on twice.
Walked in on my girlfriend while she was having sex with another guy. “What are you doing here?!” she says. “You gave me a key, remember? I ended up not working today and wanted to surprise you.”
Fifteen years later she reaches out, leaves me a message that she’d like to talk. I figure she’s doing some 12-step thing or something and wants to make amends.
Nope. She wanted to try and sell me on Amway.
15. Snoop and you shall find.
Long story short, I suspected something for a few months. Like an idiot, I opened her phone while she was asleep and found exactly what I was looking for, like you always do when searching through someone else’s phone. Even with all of the texts right there to see she still lied about it multiple times. She eventually admitted to it but downplayed it heavily.
She told me about two nights ago that he asked her out on a date and she said “I had to say no” and was visibly sad about it.
In the process of getting a divorce now. Hurts like hell.
16. Trust your paranoid gut.
Went home and my husband wasn't home, which was weird for him at 8 p.m., when an hour earlier he had told me he was going home. Had a gut feeling, went to one of his female friends' (who he claimed was like a sister) apartment, his truck is there. I knock. No answer. Try the door, it's unlocked. Walk into the living room, nobody there. Hear noises in the bedroom. Walk in and lo and behold, there they are. Tried to make it work over next couple of months, but I can't get past it, didn't even want him to touch me. Divorced four years ago.
17. Meet my new girlfriend!
Me and my girlfriend were long distance and she had a habit of going quiet sometimes. She’d been texting me for the last few weeks but had made excuses not to come visit.
I went to a party that my friend had organized. I met a friend of his who told me he had a new girlfriend. I was surprised he hadn’t mentioned her, so I asked who she was. This lady introduced me to my girlfriend. She’d told everyone that we broke up, and had been dating my friend for about a month. She didn’t bother to tell me.
18. This girl couldn't just wait a semester?
My first long-term girlfriend and I were going to go to the same college. I got accepted, but had to start the semester after she did meaning we would be slightly long-distance for a few months.
It wasn't too bad because we were only about two hours apart so it was pretty easy to visit, but our relationship did struggle a bit. I remember one night I got a phone call from her and when I picked up it was obvious it was a butt dial. I could hear her talking to some guy, but couldn't make out what they were saying. I called her and she picked up and I asked what was up? She said she was in bed about to go sleep. I told her about the butt dial and she said it was her friend Jack, who I met asking to borrow something. I thought it was odd but brushed it off.
A couple weeks later I was up there visiting her and I met a bunch of cool people, including this guy Luke. After I got back from visiting I get a Facebook message from him saying, "Look man I hate to be the one to say this, but I think you're an awesome guy and you don't deserve this to be happening to you. She's been cheating on you with this guy pretty soon after she started here."
I was devastated, but I had to hear it from her, so I called her and said, "Are you cheating on me?" She gave a heavy sigh and said, "Well, at least I don't have to lie anymore." That guy's voice I had heard wasn't Jack, it was the guy she was cheating on me with, I just trusted her so much that I took her word for it.
Even though it was painful, I was grateful for Luke sending me that message. What's funny is that most of the people I met up there that were her friends sided with me after the break up, so when I started going there that next semester I had a group of friends to support me and most of them are still very close friends of mine to this day.
19. Shady things ALWAYS go down in Airbnbs.
Wife had been texting A LOT and was very evasive when I inquired about it, though she smirked when she thought it was making me jealous (yeah, she's that kind of person).
Turns out she'd left her email logged into my cell phone. So I noticed that she had a weekend Airbnb trip to a place that was a state away (we were living in different states at the time), that seemed to be of the "quiet romantic getaway" type. Total occupancy: 2. Hmmm....well, I thought that was fairly suspicious.
So, I monitored her Airbnb page, which was easy since we were friends on Airbnb, figuring that the owner might leave a comment about how great she was as a guest. Which it turned out, she did. Except the review went something like, "(wife's name) and (guy not named me) were wonderful guests" and so on. Yeah, so, anyone want to guess what the conditional probability is of that weekend trip involving infidelity? Pretty sure it's high.
Wife apparently panicked, asked Airbnb to remove the review, altered her name on the site (?), and then finally, having failed to get the review taken down, deleted her account.
I eventually asked her about it during a counseling session and she had a ready-made defense about how she'd meant to take the trip with another coworker, but that person's car broke down so (guy's name) ended up tagging along since (guy's name) was that coworker's boyfriend, and they all stayed there together, but (guy's name) signed the guestbook, hence a totally honest mistake.
In hindsight, I am pretty sure she was not telling the truth.
We are not still married.
20. Expert sleuth levels here.
I’ve posted about this before, but he changed his phone password. I left it for months until something just wasn’t sitting right in my gut. I unlocked his phone with my thumb and I didn’t even have to look — there was a messaging app open with a girl he was meeting the next day.
I sent him to work without confronting him. I reset passwords through a long chain of emails to finally access the one associated with the messaging app.
Low and behold, he was sending approximately ten thousand emails per year for the last four years of our relationship. He was living a whole second life and hiding it from everyone. Our relationship had never APPEARED stronger and we had been seeing a therapist to work on strengthening our communication for eight months, once a week (clearly he was hiding his issues from the therapist as well).
At the time, I felt like it ruined my life. I remember thinking very clearly, “What did I do to deserve this?” When I thought that, something inside of me just snapped. I calmly went and bought a giant coffee, and cardboard boxes. I packed all his things up before he was home from work and changed our locks. The end.
21. Set your text messages to private, people!
Her phone [went] off and she asked me what it said. I looked at it and it said, "I wanna bend you over and spank you."
22. Oof. Here's a shockingly recent one.
This just happened two days ago.
I was in Florida on vacation with my girlfriend of six years, our 4-year-old son, and her family and a few of her friends. She had been taking pictures down at the beach all afternoon on her phone. We got back to the house we were staying at and everyone was in the kitchen making dinner. I picked up her phone and opened it up to text my family the pictures she had taken.
As I’m scrolling for the thread, I see her ex-boyfriend’s name. Open up the messages and first thing there are [dirty] videos they had sent to each other. I yelled “what … is this?” Her mom turned toward me and asked what was wrong and I loudly proclaimed what I’d seen. She said that she had gone out with some friends, gotten drunk, invited him out for a drink, and ended up [doing drugs] all night. Then said she got blackout drunk the next night and sent the videos. Claimed that was the only time she’d seen him.
Yeah, so when she fell asleep of course I went through her phone again. She’d seen him multiple times throughout the previous two months, and I found pictures of them together posing like a cutesy couple on their dates. Her brother and Dad were PISSED. I got outta there the next morning. Ruined the vacation for pretty much everyone, and totally wrecked our family.