Why do people cheat? The answers to this question are as varied as the cheaters and the cheatees involved. Not only are there a myriad of reasons to cheat, thanks to the cyberworld, there are a growing number of ways to experience sex with other people that may not involve the same cut and dry definitions as yesteryear. As sexual boundaries get pushed in society, and those straining boundaries are readily available to you at the touch of a button, the definition of cheating in every relationship must be examined.
Cheatin’ Old School
Depending on your interpretation of cheating, there may be several different degrees of cheating. For instance, a drunken smooch may not be the same as your girlfriend finding you in a naked co-ed sandwich in the back room of a seedy strip joint. Or worse, sleeping with someone you both know. It depends on how open and how secure your relationship is. Many women, however, do not stop at the physical betrayals as cheating. For many women, an emotional betrayal is much worse.
This is where things may get murky for you. The physical stuff is pretty black and white. Either you were in her or you weren’t. Either you were licking her uvula (that hangy thing in the back of your throat—get your mind out of the gutter!) or you weren’t. Emotional betrayal, however, can be much more painful. Imagine, if you will, a situation where you meet some new chick and you start to have feelings for her. She’s probably different from your girlfriend in all the right ways. You aren’t consciously falling for her, but you give her your email and you find yourself arranging it so that your girlfriend isn’t around when she is. Eventually, the tension starts to build up. Harmless, right? Maybe, maybe not. For women, emotional intimacy is often just as or much more important than physical intimacy. If you start mooning over some other woman, it can be much more painful for your girlfriend to find out.
A good general rule: if you feel a twang of guilt when you think about a girl, then think about your girlfriend right after, things are probably more than a little suspect. You may not be necessarily “cheating,” but you could very well be on your way. You have to figure out what you’re getting yourself in for.
The internet has opened up a whole new world of sexual exploration: voyeurs, exhibitionists, fetishists, whose predilections many can’t even fathom (popping balloons?), are exposing themselves (figuratively and literally) to their fantasies online. Sex is hands down the biggest industry online. Gone are the days when you would have to bribe a rummy outside the local smut peddler to go in and buy you the latest issue of Hustler. Now, hardcore anything is just a keyboard and a credit card number away. Could there possibly be a downside to this?
In order to discuss the issue of cybersex and cheating, we must begin by defining our terms. By cybersex, I am referring to completely anonymous, one-handed, poorly spelled chatroom nookie. I am not referring to any online endeavors wherein you know the person you are being cyber-intimate with, like dirty emailing, mutual cyber-camming, or anything where you are developing a relationship with someone online. There is no question that this has destroyed many relationships and marriages. What are the perks to this kind of action? Well, let’s face it: it’s the one night stand without the proof and without the morning-after discomfort. More importantly, it is disease-free. It’s bad enough to cheat, but to infect your partner with anything from the clap to herpes to HIV is pure evil in almost anyone’s books. There is also, seemingly, no emotional investment on your part, due to the anonymity. But if this is becoming a regular occurrence, you need to examine your reasons for pursuing this avenue of sexual experimentation rather than those that bring you closer to your lady, and closer to a living human being, period.
Probably the best part of the cybersex adventure is its complete anonymity—you are masked like you could never be in a one-night stand. If you have maybe let the six-pack turn slide into a two-four, if you have never really been too slick around the ladies, the freedom to invent your persona in an intimate online situation can be very freeing. Cybersex is judgment-free. You don’t have to be able to keep it up for 45 minutes, or even 45 seconds. It can be as big as you imagine or want it to be. You can be aggressive, or completely submissive. It is the kind of role-playing that can make playing with sex very dynamic, fun and interesting. Not to mention super hot. The big question is: why aren’t you sharing these ideas with your girlfriend?
If online lovin’ is growing into being a significant part of your life, then it is important to share it with your girlfriend. Be careful in doing so. If you don’t feel that you have been cheating on her, you may not offer the info that you have been the Ron Jeremy of the chatroom circuit, although it is possible that she will ask. Once you get past that, however, chances are, if things have gotten a little ho-hum in the sack (which they naturally do if you don’t work together to stay dynamic), she may just be up for the adventure herself. Why not suggest that you two have an online rendezvous in a chat room? Act like you just heard about these chatrooms where couples can have sex, and ask her if she would like to try it out? Agree to a “non-judgment” rule where you two can act out your fantasies in the cyber world where it’s a little less intimidating, and then maybe you can parlay some of the things you learn about each other into a whole new era in your bedroom.
In the end, fidelity comes down to being honest with the person you love and allowing them into places in your world where you do not let others tread. What could be a greater gift?
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