But they may be so when participants are also involved in another primary offline relationship, because of the harm imposed on those partners.
In this regard, the following aspects are particularly significant: All of these worries are genuine and can be found in many online relationships.
As one woman in a committed relationship remarks about her online sexual affairs: "I've had this discussion with my boyfriend and we both agree that as long as it's not with the same person more than twice, it is really masturbation.
It's like reading an erotic story and masturbating to it.
People, consciously or not, consider their online sexual relationships as real—they experience psychological states similar to those typically elicited by offline relationships.
Accordingly, cybersex is about sex, but a form of sexual encounter involves experiences typical of other encounters, such as sexual arousal, masturbation, orgasm, and satisfaction.
They are also perceived to involve a lesser degree of betrayal, as they involve more imaginary elements and the degree of neglecting the partner's interests may be lesser.
Nevertheless, since online affairs are real they do often cause actual harm to one's primary, offline romantic relationship.
Living within the two worlds is not easy, however, and may become increasingly risky when people do not realize the limitations of each.
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.
I think, however, if you do it with the same person more than once there is a risk of getting attached to them." However, the above types of limitations are extremely difficult to follow, as online boundaries are less constant and rigid.
Generally, online affairs are easier to perform and put the agent in a less vulnerable position, as the chances of getting caught or being hurt in other ways are considerably reduced.