I'm a relationship expert. These are the 7 types of couples who are vulnerable to infidelity.

Dee Tozer is an experienced couples psychologist and transformational relationship repair expert. She is a master coach with a focus on couples in crisis because of infidelity. 

In all seven types of couples, one or both partners are vulnerable to kind attention from a third person because in each scenario one or both do not feel like they matter to the other one. They don’t feel valued, admired or important.

Here are the seven couples types vulnerable to affairs. 

1. The bickering argumentative couple. 

Here both partners want to be right. Want to win the point. This is where neither listens to the other, hence neither feels heard which then leads to a habitual argumentative style over minor day-to-day occurrences. 

It follows that going from this bickering at home to an understanding colleague at work can build a warm connection where one feels heard and matters, it’s fertile soil for romance to blossom. 

2. The friends but no passion 'roommates' couple.

This scenario may bring comfort and a fairly harmonious life day in day out, however with no spark or passionate buzz, no lovemaking, the couple bond weakens over time. 

These couples tend to be more out and about solo and cross paths with many opportunities to be noticed by a third party. This could be in the workplace or in sporting groups. These days ‘meetup’ groups are nearby everywhere. 

It is well known that romance thrives where interests are similar because there is so much in common to talk about which can lead to forming a deep connection. It’s a tiny shift from being nice and friendly to being cheeky and flirty. 


The next shift from cheeky and flirty to romantic and sexual seems like a much bigger shift. Yet while it’s a large shift, for some people the human need to feel that excitement to be alive through a passionate connection transcends sensibility such that it feels like an easy natural shift.

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Video via Mamamia.

3. The disconnected distant couple. 

This is where even a strong friendship has faded away. So no passion, no activities together, bored with each other, often bored with life. 

It does not take much for a third party to catch the eye of a partner who feels totally uncared about, a partner who feels fully at a loss as to ‘how to co-habit, co-parent, co-exist’ when there is zero connection. This third-party connection is most likely to occur in the workplace.

4. The highly volatile, high conflict couple.

This couple is highly passionate about multiple areas of life. They hold strong views, are sensitive to criticism and reactions are likely to bring harmful flashpoints of hostility where nasty things are said. 


Over time vindictive attacks destroy the positive romantic passion they had and their connection turns sour with both partners feeling unappreciated and unloved.

For passionate, expressive people, it becomes more and more difficult to keep this hurt to oneself and sharing with a work colleague can open up the floodgates for a romance to bloom. A passionate person by nature will behave passionately in an affair because this gives the space to express passion positively and escape the negative, hostile environment at home. 

5. Compulsive behaviours couple.

The range is considerable. It could be alcohol, drugs, porn, shopping, etc. 

It goes without saying that the likelihood of cheating occurring is very high when one is under the influence of alcohol, or drugs, particularly if it is a casual one night fling. 

However, the odds of getting caught up in a long-term affair is also high. This is common when the alcohol or substance user is in denial about their overuse. 

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6. Controlling couple.

Control in a couple can either be one way, such that one partner is the controlling partner or it can be two way, where the control dynamic is exerted by both partners over the other. 

In relation to the occurrence of infidelity in these couples, it appears that the partner who feels he or she is shut down by the control of the other partner, as in has no voice, is the one most likely to be vulnerable to cheating because of their need to be heard and valued. 

7. Abuse couple.

Just as with ‘control’ in couples, abuse can be one way or two way. 

The term abusive is not a ‘static’ observation. It is on a continuum of both type and intensity level. 

For example, financial abuse typically describes the serious restriction of access to funds for essential daily living. The type is ‘financial’ the intensity is typically ‘high’. All other types of abuse can be classified by intensity and type. 

With verbal and emotional abuse, there are many variations on what is considered ‘abuse’ or what is considered just ‘nasty’. Hence we tend to lean on the side of conservatism considering if nastiness prevails then it is likely to be moderate emotional, verbal abuse. Whichever way it’s viewed, an abused partner will be drawn to a kind co-worker who treats him or her respectfully. 

Feature Image: Getty.

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