There has been a lot of ink spilled and a lot of research done into how an online relationship can affect a real world relationship. As with so many things in the world of social science and psychology, opinions on the subject are all over the place. Some people steadfastly believe that any online relationship, no matter how casual, is as bad as a real world affair. These men and women insist that something as seemingly innocent as online flirting with someone their spouse will never meet is a serious breach of trust and can be just as damaging as an affair with a coworker.
On the other side of the fence are the men and women who insist that an online relationship is not cheating, and that a little bit of flirting with an Internet friend can actually be good for the relationship. There is a great deal of support for this belief, and many couples have successfully integrated online relationships into their real world marriages.
Online Relationship Can Save Your Real Life Relationship
It is all too easy for couples – especially long married ones – to get stuck in a rut and feel that their relationships are going nowhere. If one or both spouses engages in a real world affair, the irrevocable breach of trust may be too great to bear.
Online intimacy and flirtation are much different. When approached openly and honestly, a little bit of online flirting can actually deepen intimacy and help couples work through issues that might otherwise have destroyed their relationship. Here’s why.
- When the flirtation takes place online, there is no physical intimacy and no breach of the marital vows. This is even more true if the two online partners agree from the start that a real world meeting is off limits.
- A spouse who is feeling unloved and underappreciated might choose to express his or her feelings online. Having a caring person on the other side of that computer screen can often help the affected spouse work through their feelings and understand where the problems lie. When they close the laptop screen, they just might have a new perspective on the marriage and the importance of true intimacy.
- Online relationships can help both spouses deepen real world intimacy and take the marriage to a whole new level. Many couples share their online relationships and experiences with one another, bringing their Internet personas into the light and gaining a deeper knowledge as a result.
Online Flirting vs Real World Cheating
The approach of online flirting is the opposite of real world cheating, and it can actually be good for the marriage or the relationship. By sharing their feelings and their online personas, both spouses gain a deeper understanding of what is going on in their lives – both individually and as a couple. Far from being destructive to the marriage, an intelligent online relationship can actually prevent treating and increase the trust and intimacy of both partners.