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Is Cybersex an Affair?

by Elizabeth Black
June 07, 2007
Is Cybersex an Affair?

Tim nearly fell off the couch when his wife opened her Valentine's Day gift. She pulled a huge, purple butt plug out of the box. She gave him a very shocked look.

The butt plug was for Tim's “cyber playmate”. The company had shipped it to the wrong address.

He stammered, and told his wife he bought the butt plug for himself, but it was too big. He was going to send it back. She bought his story. His heart rate finally fell to normal.

Tim likes cybersex (or cyber), especially bondage and sadistic sex play. His wife, on the other hand, is about as vanilla as they come. He used to have cybersex at work when he had unfiltered access to the Internet.

He doesn't consider his cyber-relationships affairs.

"They're flirtations," he says. "There's no face-to-face."

Fantasy and role-playing are two reasons cyber sex is appealing. You can be anyone you want to be, and you have anonymity. As Gloria Brame puts it, "Where else can a fat, balding, fifty-year old, cigar-smoking man tell everyone he is really "Fifi," a statuesque Las Vegas showgirl--and immediately draw a following?"

You can indulge in kinky sex play with people you might otherwise not meet. Go into any sex chat and the IMs begging for cybersex come almost immediately. "Age/Sex Check" is a running joke in chat rooms. Of course, you have to be careful. That gorgeous 18 year old steaming up your computer screen with descriptions of her huge tits could really be a 45 year old guy with a beer belly, or a cop. Or she could even be a computer program.

Jenny18 is a computer sexbot program created by a geek who wanted to see if anyone would cyber with software. He expected people to at first try but quickly give up out of boredom. He was surprised that Jenny18 ended up becoming quite popular. She has a set of stock phrases that she can use in conversation when people type in certain keywords. The results are hilarious and fascinating. Here is a portion of one transcript:

Brad_Marsh: so you wanna cyber?

jenny18: im ..(blush) really horny rite now. i just want to get off.

Brad_Marsh: ok

jenny18: ^__^ mmm.

Brad_Marsh: fuck me then

jenny18: aiight =)

Brad_Marsh: how big are your tits?

jenny18: yeah, i do have pretty amazing tits. =)

Brad_Marsh: i want to suck them

jenny18: mmmMm..

Brad_Marsh: is your pussy shaved?

jenny18: what about it? u know you wanna tap it.

Brad_Marsh: i just want to fuck you so hard

jenny18: i promise ill be good :)

Brad_Marsh: yes

jenny18: mmm :)

Brad_Marsh: i want to fuck you

jenny18: mm... lick me first pls?

Brad_Marsh: i will eat u out

To read more about Jenny18, go to this link To read more of Jenny18's sex transcripts, go to this link.

You can be anyone you want to be online. When people don't see you in person, they won't see your big belly, your double chin, your zits, or your big feet. You can pretend to be an oversexed vampire, or an elf living in the woods, even someone of the opposite sex.

I had an interesting experience playing an online role-playing game (or RPG). The game had areas where avatars "lived" and hung out. The same area existed on two different servers. I had two avatars, one for each server. One was a very comely woman named Tamlyn, and the other was a handsome man named Mason (not the avatars’ real names). I played Tamlyn very frequently, Mason I played much less often. When I played Tamlyn, I was treated much as I expected to be treated, since I told everyone that I was female myself and they knew me well. However, when I switched servers and played Mason, I visited the area where everyone was familiar with Tamlyn, and I had very interesting conversations with men who played the game. I always made a point of making sure that any man who talked to Mason for a lengthy period of time knew that it was really Tamlyn from the other server. Immediately, the guys began to hit on me. They thought it was sexy for a woman to pose as a man in the game, especially if they already knew her from another server. Lots of people created different avatars in the game, and they reported similar experiences. Others created the same character with the same name for all of the servers.

When I was honest with the other players about my identity all of us got along fine; there was a little flirtation, but it was minor. Some players who knew me felt a bit put out that I did not identify myself when I played with the Mason avatar. Being upfront and honest about my two online game identities made our interactions much more comfortable.

Could honesty be the key to a successful cyber relationship? The best way to handle a cyber relationship could be to simply tell your partner and your cyber friend about each other. Those who are polyamorous rely on that way of interacting with each of their partners. Greg is polyamorous. "For those of us who are polyamorous, email and web communication has been an excellent way to keep in touch with lovers, flirt with and court potential lovers, and exchange sexually explicit writing, photos, etc for our mutual pleasure and edification," Greg says. "Of course our other partners know all about it and participate as much as they want."

Greg agrees that cybersex establishes an emotional connection between two people; words are powerful. "Two people who stimulate each other verbally to orgasm don't need to be in the same room to do it," Greg says. "I have definitely had ‘steamy’ email exchanges that resulted in sexual, loving relationships. I see cyber communication as just one more way one can learn about partners and become more intimate with them."

Not everyone thinks that cybersex is all innocent fun and games. The Mark Foley teen congressional page sex scandal brought under-aged sex abuse to the public's attention. Foley went by the handle " Maf54" when he instant messaged (IMed) a sixteen year old congressional page. The former page says the IM session published by ABC News is a transcript of his actual online chat with Foley. It is located here.

Cybersex can become an addiction. Men are more likely to become addicted to viewing cyberporn, while women are more likely to become addicted to cybersex chat. They may spend thousands of dollars each month downloading porn or engaging in “members only” sex chats and web sites.

Infidelity expert Ruth Houston quoted two studies finding that one third of cyber affairs eventually lead to personal contact. " Cyber affairs are actually a form of emotional infidelity," Houston wrote on her web site. "Although in the early stages, there's no sex involved, most emotional infidelity eventually leads to sexual infidelity if left unchecked." Dr. Kimberley Young developed a Cybersex Addiction Test to help you determine if you are an addict. Some of the questions included:

"Do you move from cybersex to phone sex or even real-life meetings?"

"Do you hide your online interactions from your significant other?"

"Do you feel guilt or shame from your online use?

When handled poorly, cybersex could lead to intense feelings of guilt, subterfuge, and lying. However, cybersex can enhance your sex life. You may have a chance to engage in sex play you would not have with your real-life partner. For instance, you may be able to engage in cyber-bondage and Dominant/submissive play that your partner is not interested in. Cybersex leads to variety. The key to enjoying cybersex seems to be having a good grasp of your own needs. What needs are being fulfilled when you engage in cybersex? Do you perceive it as not much more than a fun time without any emotional connection, or as a developing relationship between you and your cyber paramour?

Problems may surface if you feel the need to keep your cybersex a secret from your partner. On the other hand, at least in the polyamorous community, the Internet becomes a great way for relationships to develop in an open and honest fashion between all involved parties. If you can be open and honest with your partner about your cybersex play, your partner may welcome and enjoy your adventures. Your partner may even become interested in playing around with online sex and flirting. Cybersex need not be viewed as a bad thing. It can simultaneously enhance your sex life and help you to meet interesting people.


Sources:

How To Have Cybersex: Boot Up And Turn On by Gloria Brame

About Jenny18

Jenny18 chat logs

Mark Foley Sex Scandal Transcript

Cybersex/Cyberporn Addiction

Are You Addicted To Cybersex: Quiz

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Author:Elizabeth Black
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Elizabeth Black lives in New England a few blocks from the ocean. She has a weekly column about sex and relationships with the British e-zine nuts4chic. She also writes erotic fiction for Scarlet Magazine (U. K.) and Tit-Elation. Her articles about pop culture, sex, and relationships may be found in Sex-Kitten, Bare Back Magazine, and nuts4chic.