Signs He Is Living a Secret Life

Edited by Kathy McGraw, Maria Quinney

You can't put the finger on it, but you get the feeling that your husband or boyfriend isn't being completely honest with you. More to the point, you think he might be living a separate and secret life when he is not with you. It may be that he's just your garden-variety cheater, but his double life could also be a symptom of a much deeper pathology: according to About 12 percent to 16 percent of people have exploitative personality disorders.People like this often use others for their own ends and often show very little empathy or concern for the misery they cause to the people in their lives.

Now, I'm not saying that your husband or boyfriend is a serial killer or anything: in fact, most people with exploitative personality disorders are not killers, but the damage they do with their deceptions and machinations cost people thousands of dollars and plenty of emotional distress.

The Exploitative Personality Disorders

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It might be helpful to define what the exploitative personality disorders are. LoveFraud includes Borderline Personality Disorder in with its grouping, but when looking at what the DSM-V has to say, it doesn't match the criteria for exploitation. Also, it is 75 percent more prevalent in women, while this article deals with just men, so I am leaving it out.

Basically, people with exploitative personality disorders use the people in their lives for their own purposes. They see other people as a means to end, and since they lack remorse and empathy, they don't care if their actions hurt others.

  1. 1
    Antisocial Personality Disorder (ASPD)
    Also known as psychopathy or sociopathy, approximately 1 to 4 percent of the human population has this disorder. The DSM-V defines ASPD as "a pattern of disregard for, and violation of, the rights of others. " It is more common in males than females. Symptoms of ASPD as listed in the DSM-V include:
    1. Frequent law-breaking.
    2. Deceitfulness.
    3. Impulsiveness.
    4. Irritability and aggression.
    5. Recklessness.
    6. Irresponsibility.
    7. Lack of remorse.
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  2. 2
    Narcissistic personality disorder
    Narcissists make up about 6 percent of the human population. The DSM-V defines this personality disorder as "a pattern of grandiosity, need for admiration, and lack of empathy." It is more prevalent in males than females. Symptoms of Narcissistic Personality Disorder according to the DSM-V include the following:
    1. Grandiose sense of self-importance.
    2. Fantasizes about having limitless success in all areas of life.
    3. Believes they are "special" and only high-status people can understand them.
    4. Needs excessive admiration
    5. Has a sense of entitlement.
    6. Exploits others.
    7. Lacks empathy.
    8. Is envious or others or things others are envious of them.
    9. Is arrogant and haughty.
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12 Signs Your Man is Leading a Secret Life

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If you notice any one of the following signs, your guy could be playing you for a fool. Sure, some of them could have perfectly innocent explanations, but there are a few that just don't pass the smell test.

  1. 1
    You sense that something isn't right
    It's a niggling sensation, just a prickle on the back of your neck or a sense of foreboding that you can't shake loose. Your gut is telling you that something isn't right about your guy. Trust your instincts: they exist for a reason.
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  2. 2
    He's gone for long periods of time
    It may be that he has to travel for work: he could be a businessman or a long-haul trucker. Or perhaps he just up and disappears from your life for a while, only to return later on bearing gifts.  
    1. While not every man who has a job that requires frequent travel is living a double life, having such a job provides him with excellent cover for it.
    2. On the other hand, it's a huge red flag if your guy vanishes for months without a word and then suddenly returns to you as if nothing happened.
    3. Watch out for him always checking in with you at the same time of day while he is away. If any deviation from this schedule makes him nervous, he could be checking in with you at a certain time to head off you trying to contact him while he is otherwise engaged.
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  3. 3
    He has inflexible boundaries
    Some people are more private than others, and everyone deserves some personal space, even in a committed relationship. However, intimacy requires that some barriers come down. If he, like Bluebeard, tells you that a certain room in his home is off limits to you, or his computer is sacrosanct, he's hiding something from you. It could be as innocuous as his porn collection or as sinister as his personal torture chamber, but there's definitely something there that he doesn't want you to see.
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  4. 4
    He never answers your questions directly
    Whenever you ask him a question about where he has been or what he has been doing, he changes the subject or deflects it toward something else. He may even threaten you with ending the relationship or make you think you're being paranoid or crazy even to ask such things.
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  5. 5
    He uses sex to confuse and obfuscate your concerns
    He frequently coaxes you into having sex with him rather than answering your questions or discussing your relationship, or else he threatens to cut you off if you persist in your queries. For him, sex is a weapon to get you to comply with his wishes.
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  6. 6
    He keeps secrets from you
    He has places he goes that you don't know about, or a secret bank account, credit card, or cell phone. Either he is pathologically paranoid, or he is living a double life, neither of which bodes well for your relationship.
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  7. 7
    He remembers doing something with you that you know you weren't there for
    He might have gone to the Ice Hotel, but you know that you weren't with him when he went, and that was only last weekend!
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  8. 8
    Your friends and family can't stand him
    It is true that love is blind: under the haze of new love, we don't see things clearly, or we ignore things about the other person that we should not. However, our friends and family see everything clearly, so if they are vehemently against your new beau, you should at least hear them out.
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  9. 9
    He is always working late
    He works late into the night, but you never see an accompanying increase in income that should come with such devotion to his job.
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  10. 10
    He is no longer intimate with you
    If he has a normally high libido, but you no longer have sex as frequently as you did in the past, he could be getting his satisfaction elsewhere.
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  11. 11
    His shower patterns have changed
    Instead of showering before bed, like he usually does, he now has a shower as soon as he gets home. Could he be trying to wash someone else's scent from his skin?
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  12. 12
    He has suddenly turned into a metrosexual
    He used to be a jeans-and-t-shirt kind of guy, but now he's dressing in dressy button-ups and tight slacks. He has even started man-scaping and going to the gym more frequently.
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The Bottom Line

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Whether it turns out your lover is just your average Lothario or the next Ted Bundy, it's important to find out sooner rather than later. If your guy has an exploitative personality disorder, you need to cut him loose. He will never change, so don't stay with him because you think you can help him. You can't. He will just keep on using you until he drains you dry, then he'll move on to the next mark. You may even end up dead.

If you have problems with any of the steps in this article, please ask a question for more help, or post in the comments section below.


Article Info

Categories : Relationships

Recent edits by: Kathy McGraw

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