Thursday, August 6, 2009

19 Signs of Close Call Friendships - Affairs

I recently heard Dave Carder present on "Close Calls", 19 signs that a friendship will potentially lead to an affair. It was at the 2009 Smart Marriages Conference in Orlando. I have never heard anybody articulate how well meaning people wind up in affairs as well as he did. Affairs are often the result of a dangerous partner profile, an old flame "the ex" or platonic friendships that become close call friendships. Here are the signs to watch out for on friendships:

1. You save topics of conversation only for this friend
2. You share spousal difficulties with them - a form of criticism towards your spouse "you are a woman, help me understand how this works"
3. Your friend shares his/her relationship difficulties with you
4. You anticipate seeing your friend more than your spouse (we tend to see our spouses at the 2 worst times in the day - the morning rush and the evening exhaustion)
5. You begin comparing your spouse to your friend
6. You show more concern about your friend than your spouse
7. You provide special treats for your friend
8. You fantasize about marriage with this friend
9. You spend more time alone with this friend than your spouse
10. Your spouse does not have access to all your conversations (cell phone, texts, social media etc)
11. You spend money on your friend without your spouse's knowledge
12. You begin having conflicts with your spouse over this friendship
13. You lie to spend more time with this friend (go to work early, stay late, Bible study, praise band etc)
14. You hide interactions with your friend from your spouse (don't smile at me at the get-together, church cookout, etc my husband/wife is watching)
15.You accuse your spouse of being jealous when he/she brings up the friendship
16. You develop special rituals with your friend - which you both highly anticipate
17. Your friend shares feelings or touches you and you inwardly response - inner shiver
18. Sexual content becomes a part of your conversations
19. You do corporate dating - you are both participating in business travel for your company, church ministry etc where you get entertained, eat, drink and stay in the same hotel.

Dave Carder also shared that the dangerous partner profile is an individual who's personality, character and interests fit with our own needs or something lacking from our marriage. The 'old flame'/ex-factor is a problem because we already had feelings for them in the past. Calling them to meet a current need e.g. financial difficulties can lead to an affair. Lesson in all this, value your marriage and start talking to your spouse about any unmet needs in your relationship. Seek help through attending marriage enrichment workshops or a family therapist. If you need to find a relationship class or a marriage enrichment workshop in Palm Beach County or Broward send an email to to learn about Relationship Classes & Enrichment Sessions. If you live elsewhere in Florida or outside the State, I will try my level best to direct you to a nearby resource.


  1. Good article. People need to know this so I bookmarked it. Some of these are a bit obvious but it really puts things into perspective when in checklist form. I think it's safe to say if a person check more than 2 red flags it's time to go to a marriage workshop or counseling.

  2. I also attended the BAN (Beyond Affairs Network) session at smart marriages and it was quite moving listening to the testimonies of couples dealing with the effects of affairs. I came out with a strong feeling of hope - all is not lost if a couple is already dealing with it, Dave Carders program "Torn Asunder", Michelle Weiner-Davis' "Divorce Busting" and the BAN Support groups are some of the resources available to couples. You can also sign up for a relationship education/enrichment session at

  3. Thank you for this list and blog. As a therapist, I have been alarmed by the increase in affairs as a result of reconnecting with old flames on Facebook. People are often naive about how this can cause problems in their marriage and can easily lead to an affair. I started a cause on FB to raise awareness and have posted a link to this blog. I hope that is okay with you. Keep up the good work!

  4. Excellent list of Close Calls , my husband was drawn into such a relationship with a married woman . I have no doubt that the "friendship" was eventually "consumated" , watching the video of Unfaithful Infatuation as well as reading Dr Carder's Close Calls and Torn Asunder where somewhat of a help to me. I also agree with M. Rogers regarding Facebook, my husband also was interested in contacting his lover from over 35 years ago during his "crises" . I have come to acknowledge to myself that my spouse is a narcissist and realize that though he claims "All women are attracted to me" and blames everyone else for his problems that I need to work on setting boundaries in our marriage and sadly not expect him to love me , the poor soul though arrogant is unable to love himself due to childhood circumstances of abuse .


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