My first encounter with cybersex is still something I find myself laughing about. For many people, being online takes away the fear and apprehension that people feel when speaking to someone face to face. They can be cooler or hotter, better looking or nicer. I’m not a huge fan of it and the naughty provocative bit wore off after realizing there are only so many euphemisms that one can use for the words male and female private parts.
Even typing those terms here seems almost too clinical a way to refer to the act of verbally seducing another person through a chat window and engaging in the verbal act of consummation, which includes the description of the act as well as reactions.
Cybersex is one of those iffy places that most people who play online will hesitate to comment on whether they actually do or not. In the realm of the role playing games, more do than do not, but they couch it as an act between two characters rather than between themselves and someone else.
What Constitutes Cheating?
So this brings us to the question, what constitutes cheating? Is cheating the act or the intention? The judicial system, to the best of my knowledge, have never used cybersex as a causal count in a divorce or suit action involving a couple’s fidelity or lack thereof. However, the act despite the fact that involves only words typed on a screen with miles of cabling separating one person from another, still involves two people.
Let’s talk about Jane. Jane’s a great gal, but she’s shy when it comes to meeting people in person. She enjoys the Internet for the anonymity it affords her. She likes to log in and meet new people. Whether she is just skimming the surf of different chat rooms or actively exchanging emails with prospective individuals that match her criteria.
When Jane meets Mel, she decides that Mel is her kind of guy. They share similar tastes in a lot of areas. They enjoy chatting it up, but neither one of them is ready to meet. They just like the social interaction they have online. Their comments toward each other develop towards the racy, but do not cross the line. She has another online friend named Phillip. Phillip loves to get racier and racier. One night, she responds with a flatly blunt remark that his racy remarks warm her up. When he asks her how warm, she feels a momentary thrill, but she exhibits boldness through the chat window she would be reticent to use in person.
So where do they cross the line from racy remarks to exchanging messages of “stroking” and “caressing”? Anytime really, it is a matter of taste and preference. In many ways, it is like reading a particularly provocative sex scene in a novel, but rather than firing your imagination about the two characters, you take on the role of one of the characters. In your mind and in the mind of your partner, it is the two of you who are symbolically and verbally making love together.
Phillip is not the ‘one’ for Jane. She knows it. He knows it. But their verbal sexing of each other is something they both enjoy. It makes her feel good about herself and perhaps it increases his confidence as well. The psychology of sexual response increasing a person’s self-confidence is not unheard of. Verbal lovemaking stimulates physical responsiveness and obviously a mental one.
Is Jane cheating on Mel with her online relationship to Phillip? It’s not an easy question to answer. Because it relies on trust as the sole judge and proprietor of whether the act counts as ‘cheating.’ A couple, which lives together, may not find that ambiguity questionable.
Like so many of the choices we make in life, it really comes down on the side of point of view. Is Jane receiving some sort of satisfaction from her interactions? Presumably. Can she receive this satisfaction somewhere else? The only person who knows the answer to that is Jane. Is her relationship with Mel something concrete enough that she can ‘cheat’ on it?
Cheating is something we do that we don’t want to be caught at. We hide it from others and we keep it a secret. We do this not necessarily because it is wrong, but because it either has the appearance or the feeling of being wrong. A couple making love through a chat room is engaged in a private act. The privacy is inherent because they are often the only two people in the chat window when they perform it. It is as private as a couple which makes love in a bedroom.
Answering the Question
And you may be saying to yourself that I’ve never directly answered the question. That’s because the only two people who can answer this question are the ones who are involved. It’s all about perspective. I know if I found my partner has been engaged in cybersex, I’d be very upset. It would count as a form of cheating, perhaps one of the worst kinds because it involves mental effort to engage in the activity. It’s rare that this can mean nothing because the physical satisfaction cannot be achieved quite the way it can be through the actual act.
So ask yourself if you are wondering, how would you feel if you found your partner, mate or date doing what you are doing? If you would be hurt, upset and feel betrayed, well then the answer is yes, you’re cheating and never try to convince yourself otherwise.