Mileham conducted in-depth online interviews with 76 men and 10 women, ages 25 to 66, who used Yahoo's "Married and Flirting" or Microsoft's "Married But Flirting," Internet chat rooms geared specifically for married people.The study's participants, who represented every state, included stay-at-home mothers, construction workers, engineers, nurses and presidents of large corporations.Some went online for a quick "sex fix," while others established more meaningful connections where they talked about personal problems and marital issues, Mileham said. Still others wanted to engage in cybersex, exchanging sexual fantasies with someone while masturbating, she said.The vast majority said they loved their spouses but sought an erotic encounter online because of boredom, a partner's lack of sexual interest or the need for variety and fun, Mileham said.Eighty-three percent of the study's participants said they did not consider themselves to be cheating, and the remaining 17 percent deemed it a "weak" form of infidelity that was easily justifiable, she said.Other research has shown, however, that most spouses feel as betrayed, angry and hurt by online infidelity as they would if skin-to-skin adultery had taken place, she said.Join Free Now Even though you are able to view videos and sift through photos of our cheating husbands and wives, there is nothing better than chatting with them and getting to know them on a more intimate level.No matter how busy your life can get, you can easily fit our married flirt chat into your schedule, whether it be on your lunch break or in the middle of the night.
Much of the Internet's appeal to married people is the anonymity it guarantees, coupled with the no-touching aspect, which they view as a license to be sexual, Mileham said.Al Cooper, a leading expert in the field of Internet sexuality and the author of the book "Sex and the Internet: A Guidebook for Clinicians," said Mileham's research is important in helping to understand this increasingly common phenomenon."We are hearing from therapists around the country reporting online sexual activity to be a major cause of marital problems," Cooper said.Research shows that more males than females use chat rooms, said Mileham, who found it difficult to get women to respond to her survey.
Females are usually bombarded with messages and can pick and choose which messages they respond to, she said.
One can reveal the most intimate emotional and sexual details to an unseen stranger at any time of the day or night, she said.