“With the Internet, we’re moving away from just physical ideas about infidelity and acknowledging emotional infidelity.” While there is no universally accepted definition, an Internet affair frequently involves intimate chat sessions and sexually stimulating conversation or cybersex, which may include filming mutual masturbation with a Web camera.
Several studies suggest that even when there is no in-person contact, online affairs can be just as devastating as the real-world variety, triggering feelings of insecurity, anger and jealousy.
And this unscientific survey in the capital suggests the advice is well-judged.
Anonymity Out of 10 unsuspecting strangers, only one refuses to answer - a glance and a look away warn me off.
Parents should familiarize themselves with those sites so they can recognize if their children are using them.
“I think there is this bias that women don’t cheat for sexual reasons at all,” Hertlein says.
When you see your child texting or chatting online, you may assume they are communicating with friends and family. A study from Cox Communications found that 69% of teens regularly receive personal messages online from strangers.
Many parents may be unaware of this because only 21% of teens who receive messages from strangers tell a trusted adult.
Women usually feel more threatened by the emotional betrayal of a partner’s online affair, while men are more concerned about physical encounters, Hertlein says, but the gender differences are lessening.
“That is starting to even out in part because of the equality of opportunity that the Internet brings to everybody,” she says.