Emotional Infidelity Can lead to Physical Infidelity
Emotional infidelity is the new fad on the internet and is appropriately titled 'cyber cheating.' Many homes have one to two computers making it easy to carry on an emotional affair without the partner ever knowing. It is convenient, cheap, and fun! A person can learn a lot about an internet stranger by communicating through a few emails, texts, or chats, all without the embarrassment of meeting in person.
The sharing of personal information with strangers online is commonplace on the internet. Personal details are shared on chat boards, personal websites, blogs, message boards and porn sites. Emotional infidelity is an infidelity that occurs through emotions, feelings, or thoughts, rather than physical in nature. With the increase in technology through the internet and cell phones, the traditional term of infidelity has become broader to include thoughts and/or feelings. Emotional infidelity can include anything from texting someone intimately via cell phone to emailing intimate correspondence, exchanging personal photos, or viewing pornography.
According to an on-going poll of over 1,000 women conducted by http://www.WomanSavers.com, about 51 percent of women believed that viewing porn was emotional cheating. In a similar Woman Saver's poll, 63 percent of all women believed that online affairs constituted infidelity. The main difference between physical infidelity and emotional infidelity is physical contact. Physical infidelity involves people meeting directly and then engaging in physical intimacy. Emotional infidelity can occur in distant locations with absolutely no physical contact occurring. The primary difference between traditional cheating and emotional infidelity is actual, physical contact. With emotional infidelity, there may be a meeting, but it can occur on a cell phone or a computer. Some people who emotionally cheat don't consider the act to be a true form of infidelity because there is no physical contact. Others see no difference between physical and emotional infidelity because emotional infidelity has the same basic behavioral actions as traditional infidelity.
When actor Brad Pitt became emotionally involved with Angelina Jolie on the set of 'Mr. and Mrs. Smith,' it was only a matter of time before their emotional infidelity led to physical infidelity, resulting in a divorce between he and Jennifer Anniston. When a person cheats, they flirt and seduce another regardless of whether they are in physical contact or not. The problem results when the partner pays emotional or physical attention to someone other than their mate.
In another poll conducted by http://www.WomanSavers.com, over 70 percent of all women believed that emotional affairs could lead to physical affairs. An emotional affair can begin quite innocently and as time passes the information two people exchange becomes more intimate. As the trust factor increases, so does the curiosity, which many times ends up in a physical meeting.
When a person is not getting their emotional needs met in a relationship, they seek it from someone who will give it to them. All people want to be loved, acknowledged, validated, and needed. Humans want to be desired. If those needs are not getting met through their partner, they go online and find someone who meets their needs and begin cyber cheating. There are plenty of strangers online who will fulfill those needs, especially if deceit is involved. Many people lie to the online strangers to get the attention they think they deserve. The person may tell the stranger how mean and distant their partner is, so the stranger feels pity for them. Many married people tell online strangers they are 'separated' or 'divorcing' when this is far from the truth.
With the ease of meeting new people through the internet and through various communication devices, the number of people engaged in emotional infidelity and cyber cheating will increase. However, it is important for the parties engaging in the communications to consider the consequences and pain these acts may have on their partner. A good way to determine what is and what is not acceptable is to ask yourself if you would be okay with your partner engaging in the same type of behavior with another. If the answer is no, then you should back off because emotional infidelity can hurt just as deeply as physical unfaithfulness.
The following behavioral signs are the top 10 signs of emotional infidelity. If any of these rings a bell regarding your relationship, perhaps you are not as close to your partner as you should be.
1. You have little or no sex. Partner is always too busy or tired.
2. You have petty arguments.
3. You feel like you don't have anything in common anymore.
4. One of you is no longer attracted to the other.
5. Partner spends unusually long periods of time on cell phone or computer.
6. Partner suddenly becomes hypercritical about your appearance.
7. Partner becomes secretive or defensive when questioned about their behavior.
8. Partner loses interest in relationship or family activities.
9. Partner stays on computer extremely late at night after you have retired.
10. 10. Partner secures their computer in a locked area or with passwords you don't have access to.
If your relationship shows any of the above signs, it may be time to communicate with your partner to try to reconnect. If you do not, this supposed casual 'friendship' can quickly turn from cyber cheating into something more.
Talk to your partner and tell them what you need and want. Do not be afraid to express your true feelings, including your insecurities and concerns. A loving mate will be understanding of your feelings and work through it with you. Tell your partner that you miss them, and you need their devotion and attention. This will help reopen the communication channels.
Written by Stephany Alexander, http://www.womansavers.com ©
Sexual Addiction - Creation of a Secret Life
By Dr. Robert Huizenga
Do you think your partner is sexually addicted?
How would you know?
What is the difference between normal anxiety about sex (hey, how can you NOT have any anxiety about it) and emotional distance characteristic of early sexual addiction?
Do you think your partner has a "secret life" where s/he lives out his/her sexual side?
Yes, addictions are POWERFUL. They can grab someone, squeeze out the life and leave a shell of a person.
And they leave a wake of destruction for family, friends and for most whose life touches the addiction.
There are three kinds of infidelity (out of the seven that I outline in "Break Free from The Affair") that have at their core strong addictive tendencies.
The person who says, "I Don't Want to Say NO" (affair # 3) is grabbed by power. Infidelity is a matter of conquest, of winning, of entitlement. Rules do not apply to him/her. Others are objects to be used for personal aggrandizement.
The person who says, "I fell out of love...and just love being in love" (affair #4) is guided and compelled to capture "that loving feeling." Attainment of that "emotional high" takes front and center. Others or relationships exist to give him/her that "loving feeling."
And the person who says (rarely does say this but does act it out): "I Can't Say No," is grabbed and controlled by his/her preoccupation with sex. This preoccupation may take different forms and those forms may alter and intensify over time.
If you have not read Break Free from the Affair, you may search for this book at a bookstore or online. An e-book may also be available online.
Right now, we focus on addiction as it is expressed in the "I Can't Say No" kind of affair.
I know more about addictions than the average professional, but I am not an expert.
So, I invited Mr. Randy Flood, an expert in sexual addiction to share his knowledge with you. Randy heads the Men's Resource Center in Grand
Rapids, Michigan and has treated hundreds of men struggling with domestic issues and sexual addiction.
I taped an interview with Randy where I fired questions and picked his brain.
In the 45-minute interview these were a few of the questions I directed to Randy:
• What are the early and late characteristics of sexual addiction?
• Does sexual addiction include face-to-face
"emotional" infidelity or is it relegated mainly to sexual encounters, chat room "romance",
pornography, phone sex and the like?
• When will the partner of a person addicted to sex be most tested?
• What patterns and cycles can s/he expect?
• What are typical characteristics of the partner of a sexually addicted person?
• What can the partner expect to experience about him/herself?
• What can the partner do in the early stages?
• What can the partner do in the later stages?
• What are the critical decision points for the partner?
• When is the relationship worth saving?
• When is it best for the partner to pull the plug on the relationship?
• What are the crucial resources for sexual addiction?
You can hear the entire 45-minute interview in the Infidelity Insider. Infidelity Insiders enter here. Or please click here to register.
Want a preview?
I have edited out about 5 minutes where Randy and I talk about the early indicators of sexual addiction. Randy talks about the beginning of the "secret life" - how to pick up on the first signals that you might be headed for trouble.
If the audio does not work here, you may click here and listen online. About the author: Dr. Huizenga, the Infidelity Coach, offers infidelity help and relationship advice for coping with extramarital affairs and marital infidelity at: Break Free-From-the-Affair.com and Infidelity-help.com. Get articles and free downloads on emotional infidelity, coping with infidelity, the cheating spouse, signs of an affair, surviving infidelity and more.
Article was distributed through Pastoral Care, Inc. @ www.pastoralcareinc.com.
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