I drove yesterday to pick up my sons, and listened to Deace in the Afternoon, but the host, Steve Deace, was gone and in his place was local blogger, Janet Green. (UPDATED: Janet emails me to say that it wasn't her! Oops! So I call the show and it was Jen Miller. Hmmm... doesn't sounds much the same - I need to get my ears cleaned!)
Her question for her audience was: if you, married, go into a game like SecondLife and hook up your avatar with someone else's avatar, is it adultery?
Her context for this was that there are people who spend hours and hours playing "life" online. If you're having virtual sex with others, is it cheating?
An example of this is from this guy:
I feel guilty. My wife would not be happy (understatement of the young century) if she knew of my SL activities. And I hate lying to my wife. Yet, at the same time, I'm having so much fun - I am exploring fantasies I never could in real life.Here's a clue - when you're lying to your wife and you feel guilty and your wife would not be happy, it's wrong. I mean, duh.
Some who called in to Jen's show labeled it cheating; some callers said it was not. One had an interesting perspective: if a guy who spends hours in SecondLife mashing up with hot babes virtually, how is that any different from the woman who spends hours in fantasy reading Harlequin romance novels?
Jen then gave the intro from the book Every Woman's Battle, where it starts out by saying, "At one time I was having extramarital affairs with five different men." The author then goes on to say that none of these had any physical love involved, but declared it to be an emotional or mental affair.
My memories of my romantic relationship with Ray, my fascination with Tom's wit, Mark's maturity, and Scott's verbal talents affected my marriage in a way just as damaging as a sexual affair would have been. I was overlooking all of the many wonderful things about my husband because I was either focusing on the positive attributes of one of these other men, or focusing on my husband's negative attributes.No touching doesn't mean that there's no problem. Sex is as much or more a mental act as it is a physical act. Is allowing for mental excitement with someone else cheating? I say it is.
Thanks, Jen, for the provocative discussion.