Is Cyber-Sex Considered Cheating?

Dear Sugar
I am a lesbian who has been involved in a serious relationship for the past three years. Over the past two and a half months, I've been feeling really insecure and jealous when my girlfriend talks to other lesbians online or on the phone.

Recently I've noticed that she has been especially interested in this one girl. The things they write to each other are extremely sexual and inappropriate. When I approached her about the e-mails, she got angry because she thinks that I should mind my own business and stay off of her computer. It tears me up inside to know they talk to each other like this. Don't you agree that this is crossing a line? Devastated Davida

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Dear Devastated Davida
Yes, I completely agree that she is crossing a line by e-mailing sexual notions to another woman. You are in a serious, committed relationship and she should know how badly she's hurting your feelings.

How would she feel if she happened to use your computer and noticed that you were having a dirty e-mail and phone relationship with another woman? Unfortunately, this is not an common occurrence nowadays which begs the question; Do you consider cyber-sex cheating?

I happen to be from the camp where I think if you are playing sexual mind games with someone other than your partner, it's cheating. It's insulting to your partner and it's bound to make them feel insecure sexually if you are seeking out sex from others (even if it's over e-mail or over the phone).

How can you be sure that they aren't arranging secret rendezvous and getting physical on the sly? Have they ever met and do they send each other photos, addresses, etc.?

Respect, trust and communication are imperative in a healthy and successful relationship. It doesn't sound like you have any of those things right now. Why should you trust anymore? She obviously doesn't respect you or your relationship if she's having external affairs and she's unwilling to talk to you about them and shutting you out isn't going to make you feel any better.

Now is a good time to have a long discussion about where your relationship is going. It's also a great time to introduce boundaries. If she won't comply, then say good-bye.

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