You've joined an online dating site and are excited to meet new people and explore possibilities. Finally, you discover one person in particular with whom you have a lot in common and feel that wonderful bubbly sensation of looking forward to meeting and deepening the relationship. Yet, you begin to notice a few things.
1. He avoids communicating evenings or on the weekends. You notice that your date only seems to talk to you during the week, or while in transit during travels (e.g. while at airports or hotels). If your date consistently stops texting, emailing, Skyping, etc. on the weekends or evenings then reappears during the week or during the day, that date could be a person who is married or involved.
Often times, people who are married or are otherwise attached will avoid communicating when their partners are around, usually evenings or weekends. People who are truly unattached and available will usually communicate equally on the weekends and evenings compared to communications during other times.
2. He gives mixed messages. He drops out of communication for stretches of time yet still expresses interest or desire for you. Usually when people cheat, they are wracked with guilt. They may love the excitement and adventure of pursuing someone outside of their relationship, yet they may also feel awful that they are cheating on a partner.
This conflict often manifests as the behaviors of pulling away from the new person for a while, returning to the existing marriage or relationship only to discover that there is still unhappiness, then reaching back out to the new person again. A person involved in another relationship might say to you, "Oh I've just had a lot of work or have a lot on my plate so have been a bit out of touch but let me make up for that — let's plan a romantic weekend get away!"
It's true that everyone gets busy from time to time, but the way to tell if someone is truly busy and not distancing because of conflicts about cheating, is to look at the frequency of this distancing behavior. If it is happening on a regular basis and is more the trend than the exception in the relationship, this is not a good sign. Dating partners who are truly single will progress a relationship in a way that is consistently forward moving such that communication and interactions are happening in a way that does not swing between being distant and unavailable to being passionate and romantic.
Also, some people, who are in relationships but are unhappy, use online single sites to create fantasy relationships as a diversion. When they realize that they are talking to a person who is the real deal, single, sincere and serious about finding a nice person to date, they then may pull back (especially if they have a conscience and want to avoid hurting you).
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