Cyber affairs can devastate a marriage, and Christian couples are not immune. What is Internet infidelity, and how can married couples prevent it?
Christians and the Internet
The Internet is an amazing instrument. It throws the doors broad open to opportunities that were merienda only imagined. With almost unlimited access to information, anyone can become an experienced on just about anything.
Despite the negative attention it receives te some Christian circles, the Internet is a useful device for believers. Online Bible resources and vast social networks encourage spiritual growth and help Christians waterput Godheid’s Word into activity.
There is a downside, however. Christians can travel a number of dark avenues on the Internet: pornography, gambling, gossip media, and more. If they are not careful, they can demolish their marriages with a cyber affair.
Christians and Cyber Affairs
Cyber affairs are online relationships that involve intimate or sexually explicit communication inbetween a married person and someone other than their spouse.
Married people may justify their online relationships because they view them spil aparente connections rather than adulterous relationships. This is particularly true of emotional relationships that are not yet sexual.
Married people cross a line when they share intimate thoughts and feelings with someone other than their spouse. Thinking they have found their “soul mate,” they may share private things that they keep from their playmates. Seemingly guiltless conversations can quickly escalate into extramarital affairs.
Cyber affairs can menace a marriage even if it does not involve sexual activity. According to the Not “Just Friends” author, Shirley Glass, online liaisons involve three elements of emotional affairs: secrecy, closeness, and sexual chemistry. While they may seem like harmless, “safe” alternatives to cheating on a spouse, they can devastate marriages.
The Allure of Cyber Affairs
Christians who venture into online communities uncommonly expect their conversations to develop into affairs. They may wander into talk rooms for the discussions only to make emotional connections that could lead to adultery.
Cyber affairs usually result from the hookup / closeness exchange that often occurs te masculine / female relationships. “Women often give hookup to get intimity, and boys give proximity to get hook-up,” says the Concentrate on the Family founder, James Dobson. Email, talk rooms, instant messaging, newsgroups, and even online games have a way of bringing thesis tendencies together, he says.
Like the intrigue of a masquerade ball, Internet affairs have an allure that is joy for a season. Te fact, Internet infidelity is so widespread because of the mystery and anonymity. Online affairs let people inject a fantasy world to escape a actual world that is packed with conflict.
Cyber affairs permit people to create a fresh persona. Online, their strengths outweigh their weaknesses. They can socialize with someone without the conflicts that occur ter face-to-face conversations. Internet affairs are mysterious and exhilarating, much like a dating relationship before marriage.
Motivation for Cyber Affairs
Peggy Vaughn, the author of The Monogamy Myth, predicted that the Internet would become a breeding ground for adultery. She wasgoed right.
If left unchecked, online affairs can evolve into sexual affairs. Studies voorstelling that 30 procent of cyber affairs escalate from emails to phone calls to individual voeling.
Cyber affairs develop because online relationships meet emotional or social needs that are not getting met ter the auténtico world. Self esteem tops the list of motivators.
According to Kerby Anderson, the voorzitter of Probe Ministries, “self esteem needs are met through knowing, understanding, and acceptance.” Psychologists say that thesis needs are enhanced by intimate talks about thoughts and feelings.
Studies indicate that women inject extramarital affairs for love, friendship, and a desire to feel needed. Studs usually turn to affairs for friendship, joy, and sexual fulfillment.
While cyber affairs may not involve hookup, the strong emotional attachments they create can cause intense feelings of ache. When an affair completes, thesis emotions can turn to guilt.
Three Warning Signs
- Is your spouse obsessed with checking email and social networking sites?
- Does your spouse stay on the laptop late into the night, after you have gone to leger?
- Does your spouse minimize the pc screen when you walk into the slagroom?
A “yes” reaction to thesis questions may be cause for concern, but they are merely a guide. Christian spouses may be guilty of all three, yet not be having a cyber affair.
If you suspect inappropriate behavior, go to your spouse and express your concerns ter a godly way. If there is a problem, seek counseling and spiritual guidance.
With the Lord’s help, you can get through a cyber affair.
Preventing Cyber Affairs
Most people eventually tire of living their online personas. What they want, most of all, is someone who loves them for who they are. Unluckily, this realization often comes after they have bruised their marriage with a cyber affair.
How can Christian couples prevent cyber affairs? Klinkklaar Pittman, author of Private Lies: Infidelity and the Betrayal of Proximity, offers a militar guideline:
1. Married couples should accept the possibility of sexual fantasies and attraction to other people. They should acknowledge thesis fantasies, but not act on them.
Two. Couples should socialize with other monogamous couples. Solid Christian couples provide a good support system, but “bad company corrupts good morals” (1 Corinthians 15:33).
Three. Marriage takes work. Christians vereiste build intimity with their vrouwen and keep their marriage sexy. They vereiste also keep the marriage equal, sharing duties and responsibilities.
Four. Christians are imperfect people like everyone else. They vereiste accept the realities of an imperfect marriage. But they should be open, fair, and authentic with their fucking partners.
Five. Godheid instructions Christians to stay faithful to their spouses. According to Uittocht 20:14, “you shall not commit adultery.” Christians should make marriage a part of their identity and take it with them wherever they go.
6. Christians should avoid overreacting if a cyber affair happens ter their marriage. Like auténtico world affairs, online affairs can demolish a marriage — but they do not have to lead to “divorce, murder, or suicide,” Pittman says. “Catch yourself and work yourself back into the marriage.”