Are Online Sex and Infidelity Different?
If you’re not familiar with online sex and in particular if you’re not familiar with internet sex work, it’s an umbrella term that covers basically any erotic interpersonal activities or private, commercial sex performances that happen online. This includes webcam sex, adult video chatting, texting, adult-porn, phone sex, fetish phone sex, erotic live chat, and many more. Today, the internet has become a great way to connect people and to find out things about one another. But it’s also a place where things can get complicated. In fact, just a few years ago, the phenomenon of internet sex crimes was completely unheard of. Today, however, these things have become real concerns for many people, both adults and children alike.
While it is easy to see the vast difference between online sex and “regular” offline sex (as in, normal dating/sex life), the line is becoming blurred. The most common types of online sex are: webcam and phone/cell phone sex. Camouflaging one’s sexual desires behind a computer screen is often considered acceptable, even normal. But there are still people who exploit others because they do not understand the real-life advantages of their actions. In fact, some people fantasize about being sex workers. These people know that everyone, not just people who work in adult entertainment businesses, are vulnerable to being exploited by people who have ill intentions.
Moreover, sexting and phone sex are different enough that they deserve mention as real life activities that occur offline. When two people engage in this type of intimate behavior, they are planning to have sexual intimacy, whether or not they are actually having it right now. Therefore, whether they engage in explicit conversation or just send nude pictures or other forms of suggestive pictures, they are doing so for the purpose of having sexual intimacy. That is, they are using this interaction to establish some sort of relationship, whether it is a serious or casual one.
The same goes for texting and phone sex. They are not casual relationships per se, but they are intimate relationships that often develop into more than just sex. As with offline sexting and phone sex, many online sex workers make money through advertising or promoting their services on social media sites. Their clients to get them to pose nude or in various sexual positions in exchange for money. While some of these ads are benign, others target specific age groups and some use photos of people who may be considered inappropriate.
It should be noted that not all of those who have expressed online sex worker interests are victims of sexual addiction. There are people who use these services for purely recreational purposes. For example, there are people who exchange sexual fantasies in order to help them overcome a particular fear or to alleviate stress. Those who fantasize may be suffering from an underlying sexual addiction, but the exchanges themselves are not addictive.
It should also be noted that cybersex and sexting are not the same thing. While some may view these activities as “sexy cyber sex,” others may view them as “real-life sex.” Those who view real-life sexual situations as something that cannot be classified as “cybersex” do so because the person engaging in such fetishes is actually having a normal, non-sexual relationship in real life. Those who view cybersex and sexting as real-life sexual experiences are typically involved with some form of fantasy – either related to the person’s real-life partner or to someone else.
Because these online activities are not related to any sexual contact in real life, those seeking fulfillment in such acts do not have to worry about being exposed to the actual act of sex. In fact, they can engage in these exchanges without revealing any traces of physical intimacy. This does not necessarily mean that they cannot engage in some “spicing up” of the actions. However, those who view real-life sexual relationships as something that cannot be satisfied by cybersex will always have the need to use cybersex and sexting as a way to satisfy their own sexual desires.
Those who view these online activities as non-consummation of real-life relationships will argue that there is no sexual contact at all – or, if there is, it is minimal. Those who view cybersex and sexting as a means to explore the limits of physical intimacy will often claim that there is significant, and thus satisfying, intimacy associated with these exchanges. Whether one believes that these activities are harmless or harmful is largely a matter of personal opinion. Those who seek infidelity as a way to fulfill their intimate needs may not be doing so in a healthy manner.