The astrology of cheating: Natal chart factors

caught cheating“The Astrology of Cheating” is a two-part series by Fern Feto Spring. The second installment can be found here.

“Your cheating heart will tell on you….”

How can you tell if someone has a cheating heart? In addition to using your own intuition and hard-earned judgment, you can rely on astrology to help you avoid partners who look for love in more than one place.

Not every person with the following astrological indicators is going to cheat, and there are many chronic cheaters who may not exhibit any obvious astrological patterns in their charts that fit the “cheating” signature. Rather, they may have more intricate and complicated chart dynamics than can be detailed in this post.

The natal birth chart is the first place to look for indicators of extra-curricular relationship activity. We’ll first look at clues to infidelity in the birth chart, and then explore cheating by transit, looking at what happens when Uranus and Neptune transit over sensitive relationship points in the natal chart.

Venus/Mars in Air and Fire signs

Venus and/or Mars in Air and Fire signs are the most prone to looking outside their primary relationship for dalliances and flirtations. Air (Gemini, Libra, Aquarius) and Fire (Aries, Leo, Sagittarius) need constant stimulation and change. They want to feel entertained and excited in love. This is particularly true of those who are pre-Saturn Return (younger than 30). Post-Saturn Return individuals with this natal chart signature are more likely to understand the benefits of commitment, patience and persistence and are less likely to leap at the site of something shiny and new.

Are they airy? Air is an element that needs to move, flow, have space and be exposed to new experiences and situations … constantly. Air signs get bored at the drop of a hat, and need to change, move, experiment and communicate. If your potential cheatee has Venus and/or Mars in Air signs, they may be inclined to have more than one lover or relationship interest at a time. This is particularly true of Venus or Mars in Gemini, but both Libra and Aquarius are also inclined to “dabble on the side” as well. Air signs are motivated to cheat out of intellectual or mental boredom rather than because they are missing some kind of sexual passion or heat in their primary relationship.

Got fire? Fire signs are always on the look out for the next best thing. They want action, adventure, drama and torrential passion. If they’re not getting a steady diet of “wow!” with their main squeeze, they’ll generate fire elsewhere. Venus and Mars in Aries, Leo or Sagittarius may leap before they look, making a move and then later regretting their haste. They cheat because the opportunity arises and they hate to miss out on anything that offers fun or excitement.

Outer Planets in the Relationship Houses

The 5th, 7th and 8th houses concern love, romance, sexuality and relationships. When Jupiter, Uranus or Neptune are placed natally in one of these houses, the individual may be more inclined to take risks or have a desire to push the boundaries in love and romance. Jupiter can make them want to experience many different types and “flavors” of love, trying a little bit of everyone, just because they have a desire to expand and grow beyond pre-established limits and boundaries. Uranus in these houses instigates a need to rebel, step outside the box and push the limits in love and sex. People with this placement want to experiment and be free, any kind of boundary in relationship makes them feel constricted and constrained. Neptune in one of the relationship houses has a deep need for escape, salvation and spiritual connection through love — such a deep need that, in their desire to “merge” with anyone offering an escape from the day-to-day grind of reality, they may forget about any agreements or commitments that they have made

Each of these planets can find other ways to express itself in the “love” houses, and the examples given above are only possibilities that may arise when the planet feels stifled or thwarted in some way. The more the innate energy of these planets is kept alive and active, the less need there is for the individual to act out in ways that may hurt the person they love, as well as prove self-destructive in the long run. The overall natal chart will indicate whether the individual has the self-discipline and maturity to harness the energy of these planets and put them to good use in more constructive ways.

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Photo credit: © Lucubaghs |

About Fern Feto Spring

Fern Feto Spring is a counseling astrologer, tarot reader and writer whose sessions blend intuitive and practical insight with compassion and humor. With over 20 years of experience, she incorporates a variety of tools into her consultations. Besides her private practice, Fern teaches classes and workshops nationwide. She also works as an intuitive consultant for businesses and organizations, providing counsel and facilitating organizational development workshops. More info at:


  1. I have Venus at 00 Aries. One of the contestants on “Make Me a Supermodel” who is married said, “Just because you’re on a diet doesn’t mean you can’t look at the menu.”

  2. Pensive Gemini says:

    Wow, this was great… I have Uranus in Sagittarius in the 5th house… and also venus in Gemini (and moon in Aqua in the 7th house)… lately, I’ve been posting about the two guys I’m seeing and how I don’t feel I’m getting enough from either… *sigh*

    “…they may be inclined to have more than one lover or relationship interest at a time. This is particularly true of Venus or Mars in Gemini…” Yes, tis true, we need much mental stimuli to refrain from distraction… we’re constantly searching (hoping) that the new person that seems so much fun, so great (even if we have someone already) could possibly be the one to keep us entertained forever… I guess I’m not willing to compromise with commitment if i’m not being stimulated…

  3. My Mars is in Aries in the 9th, opposite Jupiter. Definitely an impulsive, wanderlust placement, but it’s conjunct Saturn in Taurus, whose overarching need for security keeps Mars in check.

  4. I think it depends on how cheating is defined. I’m not sure if such socially-dictated activity can be located in a chart. There are many polygamous, polyamorous societies and communities that do not subscribe to the monogamous norm which is essentially a function of the process societal modernisation, necessary for capitalism to work (see Marx, et al). Now that capitalism seems to be failing, who knows what the future holds?

    ‘Cheating’ for me is not about looking for other partners. Cheating is about lying and not communicating. You can well ‘cheat’ on a partner with your Xbox as you can with a neighbour.

  5. Jeffrey, I agree. Cheating is breaking the rules, whatever those rules are, and rules in a relationship are made only between the people in it. There is only one rule in mine: don’t hide things. Don’t hide the fact that you spent $300 without my knowledge, it’s as much cheating as having sex with someone else. If my partner tells me so, it’s not cheating. I still might not like it, but it’s not cheating because he hasn’t broken any rules.

    He used to “cheat” in the typical sense of the word in his last relationship, quite frequently. I was guilty of it too, back when I was with whatshisname. Neither of us do that anymore (don’t have to). Sometimes the cheating lies in the relationship and not the person doing it. Maybe it could be found in a relationship chart, but other than saying I have Mars in Aries, there is nothing in my chart or my partner’s chart to indicate that it is in our nature. I don’t think it is, I just think that we used to be with the wrong people.

  6. Hi All,
    I think the Air and Fire signs inclinate more towards cheating because they tend to be more impulsive esp. when younger and act first/think later. This is why even when agreements are in place with polyamorous relationships, etc. they may tend to sleep with someone even though they may have an agreement in place to discuss with their partner first etc. The air signs rationalize why it’s ok to break the agreement, and the fire signs can’t believe the agreement is really real, and are driven by their needs.
    I do think that Saturn plays a big role in mediating all this, so Valkri, I’m curious if you are past your saturn return or what Saturn aspects you and your partner currently have in your chart.
    I know that for myself, the whole issue of cheating sort of disappeared once I passed my saturn return….
    Thanks for all the great discussion on this one, it’s a hot topic:)

  7. This is great. Us Pisceans aren’t known for longevity or fixity… although as with all signs, there are exceptions. Throw in Uranus in the 7th, Jupiter in the 5th & Venus in Aries (squaring Jupiter) & it sorta makes me wonder how I have stayed in a relationship for 20 years? Space, dreams & a 1st house unaspected Saturn may be the answer… Window shopping is always a great hobby…

  8. I have Venus at 2degrees Sag conjunct Uranus at 28degrees Scorpio in my 7th house, Neptune conjuncts both my natal Mercury and Sun in 8th house Sag, i guess this would make me prone to cheating, yet I have never done that, might it be because of my Taurus rising?

  9. Direberry says:

    Maybe some factor in cheating is the OTHER person? You can have a thousand planets in Gemini and if you have the right partner, you’ll be constantly stimulated and good to go.

    …or am I being too foolishly optimistic for those folks with love planets in Gemini? 😉

  10. He: a guy with sun, venus & mercury in scorpio, gemini Saturn and Ascendant, moon in Aries, Jupiter & Neptune in Sagittarius (in 7th house), mars in aquarius, pluto and uranus in libra.
    Nada in earth signs.
    I : a gal with Leo, mercury and jupiter in Leo, Pisces moon and ascendant, Saturn in Aries, Venus, pluto and uranus in Virgo (all 3 in 7th house. Ouch!), neptune & mars in Scorpio. Nada in air signs.
    We got along very well and really fast. He was very intense at times and then distant at others. When this happened, I used to think he was just testing me, or that he needed some room to breathe which I gave him. He made himself available only occasionally but we spent a lot of time talking on the phone. I used to think that was because we were not living in the same town (about 80 miles distance).
    One night, when I was at “his place”, I discovered that he lied to me about everything : from the town he was born in to the fact that he was married. I’m not using astrology to try and condone what he’s done to me. I’m just trying to understand if the Scorpio influences have been nullified by all those planets in air signs, especially his ascendant. Insights anyone? Sharing similar experiences would be more than welcome.

  11. hi

    Could somebody explain the houses for me please I don’t understand them at all.

  12. toley — in this context, 5th is romance/dating; 7th is marriage/LTR; 8th is sex as a shared experience (meaning, “deep sex” as opposed to 5th house sex, which could be construed as “playful or light sex”). This is all my interpretation, maybe Fern intended something different.

  13. Dorina: Yes-I think the Taurus rising is likely to have something to do with it-also, you may want to see where Saturn is in your chart-this could also influence you easy relationship to fidelity:)

    Direberry-I do think the other person and their “rightness” is to be considered-but I think that one people navigate through their saturn return, they have a better sense of what they want in another person, and are more likely to recognize them when they come along-
    Pre-Saturn return, they may be buzzing so quickly with Gemini, it may be hard to slow down and see who is actually there…
    Jeffrey-yes, that sums it up re: houses

  14. Hy Fern,
    thank you for your reply. Saturn (8’28”) is closely conjuncting Jupiter(8’58”) in my 6th Libra House and make no other aspects, I have Pluto as well in the 6th House (23’55) squaring my Mars in the 9th House (21’05”in Capricorn). I have not had my Saturn return yet… next year… and I am not looking forward to that 😉
    What I have just discovered recently about my chart is that I have Eros at 27’28” conjunct my Sun at 27’47”in Sagittarius quincux Moon at 27’27”in Taurus and I still do not know how to interpret these aspects, I do not come across as a very sexy girl (I think) due to that close conjunction of Eros and Sun.
    Direbery said the cheating factor might be in the OTHER person, hmmm I do not know my boyfriends having cheated on me (or so I think), actually I have had only five relationship in my life, I had my first boyfriend when I was 21 and I only had 5 intimate relationships all in all and I dare say all were long term and profound ones (might be because of my Scorpio 7th house)

    What i am mostly curious about is: in my progressed chart I have Saturn conjunct Jupiter in 5th House, Pluto progressed also in the 5th House. Pluto is also transiting my progressed 7th House (Capricorn where Venus progressed at 6’53). Uranus progressed on the cusp between Scorpio and Sagittarius occupying the Anaretic degree 29’08”.

    If you made to the end of my message I thank you. I would be interested on what you have to say, if you do not have time for a reply then that is ok. I read the second part of the article on cheating, very interesting. Thank you!

  15. Hi Dorina,
    Thanks for your comments-in general, I don’t usually look very closely at the outer planets (uranus, neptune, Pluto) in the progressed chart, instead I tend to look for at what the personal planets are doing or look at a solar arc chart if I need more clues for what’s happening.
    I would say your Mars in Capricorn natally though is another nice stability factor inclining you to more stability and fidelity in relationship.

    If you want a more personal reading on your chart I am offering shorter and more affordable readings by email-just check out my website for more info on that one:)

  16. I’m a Sagittarius and I know that I tend to have so many crushes (when I’m single). I think it’s because my mars is in Libra and I have a Pisces moon. They seem like stable crushes too, since my venus is in Capricorn, but nope, off to another guy lol.

  17. bernadette says:

    To me, cheating (secretly) is about fear of being open about problems in your relationship, and a desire to hang onto whatever is left with the person who has been left in the dark about it. Insecurity. Need for ‘validation’. Sometimes even plain old greed…it’s crucial to be upfront about what you want, and fair in letting go of the other person instead of hanging onto what’s left (for you to just use, and not reciprocate with fidelity).

  18. Fascinating subject, and one I have studied too. Good information in your blog entry. Sadly, my study of cheating has produced the conclusion that there are a million and one indications of propensity to cheat, and only a handful of indicators of faithfulness… Ultimately, it comes down to a conscious decision, even if that decision is cleverly disguised even from the self with all manner of rationalization or even self delusion.

    By the way, I have only ever met two woman who were absolutely faithful. One was only faithful because she was simply too lazy to be otherwise, and the other was faithful because she had Venus in Taurus and Sun in Leo, and had decided that she wanted security instead of variety.

    Ultimately, cheating is a choice, and choices like this can’t be concretely mapped in a horoscope. Although I can tell you that never again will I date a woman who has her Venus in Scorpio!

  19. Signs in fire and air “cheat” because they confess to it. Sagittarius, especially hate lying. Water signs cheat but on the sly you will never find out. Scorpios because of the danger, cancers and piscea because thwyre weak and need validation. And they don’t have To confess because they justify it in their heads. I am a straight shooting leo with a scorpio mars. I admire my fire characterestic more than my water one. I would rather confess than live a lie. Air and fire signs are notorious because they confess to it. I will take that anyday than a scheming lying water sign.

  20. Reality Check says:

    Seriously, Who does that when there’s joint affairs?

    I have mars in Cancer, Venus in Virgo Jupiter, Uranus & Neptune in the southern hemisphere. Cheating is an option born from invitation or boredom. Before marriage, easy game to play. AFTER. Who seriously wants to pay that game and keep his life at the same time?

  21. I am currently mistress to my ex… We broke up in 2013, but have been having sex ever since. He got married in 2014, (after I ignored him for five months), and still he chases me. I have tried breaking away several times and he always finds me, and we always end up reuniting (sexually, emotionally) I have Venus in Leo, Mars in Virgo. He has both Mars and Venus in Scorpio conjunct my Venus.

  22. Hi Fern.

    When you say once people navigate through their Saturn return they will have a better sense of what they want.. are you referring to Saturn Return on their Sun sign or Saturn based on the Saturn planetary sign in their natal chart? Thanks.

  23. It’s the Saturn return based on the person natal Saturn, not Sun Ethereal.

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