The cool thing about fantasy relationships is they don’t require any work.” Therapy is similar for online or traditional affairs, with couples working on issues of trust, betrayal and forgiveness.
The growth in steamy chat room conversations and cybersex also has triggered a rethinking of the meaning of infidelity.
Several studies have focused on the “AAA engine” that drives online affairs, namely accessibility, affordability and anonymity.
“The Internet is extremely accessible no matter where you are,” Hertlein says.
Young sees more women who are online cheaters, in part, she says, because women gravitate toward erotic chats and webcam sessions while men often are drawn to pornography.
“The Internet is opening up these new ways of exploring your sexuality and that includes infidelity,” she says.