The private nature of online affairs may make them less painful for the betrayed partner as well.

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Consider this reaction: Just as casual sex is not necessarily inherently harmful, neither are online affairs.

But they may be so when participants are also involved in another primary offline relationship, because of the harm imposed on those partners.

Whereas people having online affairs tend to understate their problematic nature, their offline partners typically do not see difference between online and offline affairs: A lack of direct physical contact and face-to-face meetings does not diminish the sense of a violation of their vow of exclusivity.

The fact that most of these affairs are concealed from offline spouses is indicative of the possible harm.

Many of them believe cybersex to be similar to pornography—an extension of fantasy that actually helps to keep them from physical affairs with other people.

Consider the following statement from a 41-year-old married man (all citations are from to cheat—something that may even add spice to their offline relationship.Time spent in that world can help them their actual world, while not giving up on having exciting, even emotional experiences.Living within the two worlds is not easy, however, and may become increasingly risky when people do not realize the limitations of each.These people believe that if they do not even know the real name of their cybermate—and never actually see them—their affair cannot be regarded as from a moral point of view; it's no different from reading a novel or other form of entertainment.In other words, a way to play out fantasies in a safe environment.Chatting is not cheating provided the guy only CHAT not cheating.