In Japan Cell phones help wives’ doubts ring true about cheating husbands

Mobile phones are the biggest reason behind cheating Japanese husbands getting caught, according to a Shukan Post (12/22) survey on salaryman infidelity.

The top-selling men’s weekly probed 300 married salarymen, finding out that 74 percent had cheated on their wives at least once and 30.2 percent are still playing around.

“I’ve found out that about 80 percent of married men have played around at least once, so the Post findings don’t come as much of a shock at all. It just backs my findings,” Sanae Kameyama, writer of “Furin no Koi de Kurushimu Otokotachi (Men Burdened With Immoral Love),” tells Shukan Post.

Of the cheating salarymen, 35.8 percent had seen their extramarital affairs exposed, with mobile phones being the reason in 22.5 percent of cases. Other common methods of capture included smelling of perfume or being covered in cosmetics, and actually being caught red-handed.

“In my research, too, mobile phones were overwhelmingly the main reason men’s affairs have been discovered. It’s common sense to wipe out your call history and records of who you’ve called, but plenty of people are nabbed when their phones are checked,” Kameyama says. “Women know that the easiest way to check on their husbands is to take a look at their mobile phone records.”

That’s exactly how a 32-year-old Osaka housewife revealed her husband’s infidelity.

“Over the past couple of months, he started acting strangely. He took his phone with him wherever he went, even if it was only to pick up a packet of smokes. He also hid it under his clothes when he took them off to have a bath. He’d never behaved anything like this in the past,” the woman tells Shukan Post. “He wouldn’t check his phone e-mail when we were sitting around watching TV and the final straw for me came when he started hiding his phone under his pillow, saying he wanted to use it as an alarm clock to wake him in the mornings. I followed him one day and it didn’t take long before I spotted him walking along with his arm linked to a young hussy.”

Another woman used a slightly slyer means to catch out her love rat hubby.

“One night I got my husband’s mobile phone and noticed that late on Friday night he’d received 10 different phone calls from a ‘Taro Yamada (roughly the Japanese equivalent of “John Brown”).’ I thought it was a bit weird, so I called the number and the voice on the other end of the phone was clearly a young woman,” the 38-year-old housewife says.

Marriage guidance counselor Hiromi Ikeuchi says that when guys fall for someone other than their wife, they often give off plenty of signs.

“For instance, a man might talk about a new woman come to work in his office and what a nice woman she is. But if he actually starts having an affair with that woman, he’ll completely stop talking about her in the home,” she says. “Often guys give away their infidelity without ever realizing it.”

Catching love rats isn’t entirely a one-way street, though guys have a long way to go before they catch up with their spouses, as only a mere 9 percent of surveyed salarymen said they had caught their wife playing around.

“My guess is that about 80 percent of women wouldn’t mind having a fling and around 30 percent have probably gone through with their wish. I know of one woman who used to cart her 3-month-old baby around to the love hotels where she had her trysts with a secret lover,” Ikeuchi tells Shukan Post. “Starting from April next year, laws will be changed to allow career housewives to claim part of their husband’s pension payments in the event of a split. Many foresee a lot of divorcing going on among the middle-aged and elderly after that. I think that many women will be concealing their own infidelity while trying to find proof of their husbands’ cheating. You’ve got to be careful, you don’t know who you’re really married to.” (By Ryann Connell)

December 18, 2006