Internet Infidelity accounts for a growing number of divorce cases. Partners engaged in an online affair go through several personality changes and often rationalize that an online affair isn’t really cheating. They believe it is a harmless flirtation because it doesn’t involve any “physical touching”. However, the emotional pain and devastation to a once warm and loving relationship is just the same.
Partners in Crisis
Partners who impacted by Internet infidelity feel betrayed, hurt, jealous, and angry at the discovery. They have long suspected that something is wrong. Their loved one suddenly demands privacy at the computer, moving it to a private den or secluded basement, and ignores the relationship while spending hours talking with someone online. They show a declining interest in their relationship and suddenly seem preoccupied with new online activities. If confronted, their partners react with defensiveness or anger, and a once loving and sensitive wife becomes cold and withdrawn, and a formerly jovial husband turns quiet and serious.
A Growing Trend
In the last decade, Dr. Kimberly Young has counseled hundreds of couples devastated by the long-term affects of an Internet infidelity. Infidelity can impact stable marriages as the partner engaged in the affair often idealizes these new online relationships. The person imagines a better life. The person pictures running off with a new lover, and romanticizes this new person who seems to understand them in a way no one else has.
Help is Available
Dr. Young works with couples in weekly sessions that rebuild trust after an online affair. Internet infidelity doesn’t have to mean the end of a marriage. She helps a partner engaged in an online affair to understand the rationalizations and how the affair may be symptom of a larger relationship problem. She helps couples to improve communication hurt by an online affair. She counsels partners and spouses at any stage of the relationship, even if they are filing for separation or divorce.
Through counseling, she helps couples address underlying problems that may have existed before the affair began and works with them to establish new ground rules when it come to using the computer. She also provides individual counseling for partners and spouses dealing with the discovery of Internet infidelity.