The key to identifying a cheater prior to starting a relationship is to notice the ‘warning signs’ through their behaviour during the first few dates, Australian relationship coaches Debbie Rivers and Iona Yeung have warned.

During each date, it’s important to watch, listen and note whether a partner focuses on you, how they interact with others and if they’re overprotective with their phone.


If you’re concerned after the third date, it’s best to trust your gut instinct and cut off further interactions.

They don’t focus on you during the date

While dating, it’s important to note how the other individual is behaving and whether their focus is on you or not.

‘If a date has trouble keeping their eyes on you for a short amount of time, you have to wonder where his/her focus is when they’re not with you,’ Iona told the Daily Mail.

‘Watch where their eyes are; if you find them wandering every time a woman or man walks by, those are alarm bells.’


‘The guy who is a player is a natural with the ladies – they’re confident and know exactly what to say and do,’ Debbie agreed, adding: ‘You may think this is good but the nice guy is more likely to be nervous around you.’

They are overprotective of their phone

Both experts said the way a person handles their phone can also be another warning sign.

‘Phones make it easy for people to cheat and look for hiding what they are doing,’ Debbie said.

‘Having their phone placed face down on the table, having notifications turned off, quickly putting their phone down when you walk into the room or being overly protective of their phone are signs to look out for.’


Iona also added that if your date is secretive about who’s calling or texting them, it might be a sign they are not loyal.

They don’t talk about their family or friends

While you wouldn’t expect to meet your date’s family and friends on the first few interactions, it’s expected that they will talk about them and the prospect of meeting them.

Talking about loved ones is also a good way to gauge their upbringing, what they’re like around family and family values.

‘People who cheat are wary of bringing friends and family into their love life in fear that one of their friends and family might “slip up”,’ Iona said.


‘If you’ve been dating for a few months and they’re still dodging the introductions, it might be suspicious.’

They don’t have a social media profile

It seems that everyone is using some form of social media, but if your date doesn’t have an online profile or doesn’t use it much, this could mean they want to keep their online image hidden.

Iona said people who have cheated have shared they don’t have a social profile to ensure their infidelity is harder to discover.


They may also avoid using social media to make it trickier to navigate who they’re speaking to regularly.