TimT
Today's technology allows for easy access to online relationships. These relationships can vary in many ways: some involve only writing through email, chat, or message boards; some involve pictures or video; some involved real-time video and talking. The level of contact varies from text-only writing to arranging face-to-face meetings, but all levels of contact can result in the kind of intimate communication and interaction that was promised to the spouse alone.
 
There are web sites dedicated to helping married people find relationships outside their marriage. Instead of helping couples move through their problems, they provide an easy escape. In my experience, online affairs can be nearly as devastating as offline affairs...and sometimes more-so.

What do you think?
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EAM
The ease of secret communications online makes it tempting to carry on inappropriate conversations online. It's a seemingly innocent activity, to carry on an online conversation, but it's another place where good personal boundary setting is important. For me, I needed to realize that online flirting wasn't much different than doing it in person. We can share a lot of personal info online, create secret emails that are easy to hide (unfortunately), and even create false personas. Carrying my personal ideals to all my online transactions is an important step in being congruent in my relationship- being the same face-to-face as I was online at all times.

As well, the online world of porn has been described as 'the crack cocaine' for anyone who may have proclivities towards sex addiction. I realized that these things- anything- that takes my focus away from my primary relationship are hazardous, to be avoided like the plague.
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CrippledLamb
This subject can easily be overlooked by all parties involved in an affair. It's definitely an area where extreme caution should be exercised-particularly by those looking to escape the reality of a "real" relationship. But beyond that- a lot of betrayed spouses can easily be pulled into temptations:
1. Temptation to engage in an online relationship as a means to get back at the cheater under the justification that it's not "as bad."
2. Temptation to engage in the online relationship as a means to cure loneliness that resulted from the affair trauma.
3. Temptation to use the many online tools to bait or check up on the cheater.
4. Temptation to escape the reality of the broken relationship by means of forming another potentially unhealthy or unfulfilling relationship too soon prior to healing from the betrayal.
Tim and EAM really are spot on with their thoughts. I just want to make sure the awareness is out there, because I personally fight these temptations now. - I really struggle with #2 & 3, but realize that none of these temptations are productive in the healing process.
It amazes me how effective and how relentless advertising from these websites can be at exploiting so many demographics.
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Intuition77
I think it goes even deeper then that even. I think technology today gives people an easy negative keeping up with the jones mentality, everyone else is doing it, the porn is everywhere and there's a definite link to technology and immediate gratification. Obviously you have to be open to it for it to affect you negatively. I think anything online should be shared like everything else in a marriage. No secrets. Of course my husband claimed to believe that too but left out his porn addiction and after dday suddenly had a new idea of privacy and openness and wanted his own secrets.

I never had anything to hide online or off. All my accounts passwords etc we're open to him and had he ever asked I never would have blinked about him looking at anything. People who have nothing to hide, hide nothing. He was being funny about his phone for months before dday and I asked about it, I said it bothered me yet when I pushed he gas lighted me and made me feel crazy and of course lied. I even
Found her name listed as just a last name
In his contacts & questioned it as id never heard it and the lies about it being a new guy at work slid right off his tongue. That was months before dday. Now I question why I allowed myself to fall for it. My gut knew something was up. Yet I allowed him to make me feel jealous and paranoid for questioning things. That bugs the hell out of me now.
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