(the following are true cases who I have counselled for relationship issues...all names have been changed)"Varsha and Nipun were always the perfect couple. It was a shock when people came to know they were separating. While this decision had devastated Nipun,Varsha was happier than ever before. No one seemed to have a logical explanation. It's when I suggest Nipun to look into Varsha's social networking account that he found proof of she having a "love-affair" with an unknown "affluent businessman" from a different city. It was after a well orchestrated police action that revealed "Varsha's online lover" to be an unemployed 25yr man. That man was put behind bars.Varsha took a lot of time to come out. They are still undergoing counseling and trying to building up their relationship"
"Sushant and Shagun loved each other. After college he moved to Australia for further studies. Against her wishes Shagun's parents got her married to a boy of their preference. 8years after marriage she regained contact with Sushant through the internet. Within 6months she filed for divorce."
"Ankit always felt his wife Neelam never gave him the love he desired. The need for true companionship always kept haunting his mind. He met Maria, through a social networking site. Within weeks his behaviour changed. Everyone noticed how the angry and easily irritated man behaved more like a 16yr old in love. All through this he remained an obedient husband to Neelam. Secretly his emotions always resided with Maria. Even while having sex, he would imagine Neelam as Maria.
He finally Divorced Neelam and married Maria. His marriage with Maria also didn't last much and had to divorce her too. Neelam is still seeking therapy. Ankit is in deep depression and guilt, but is living in denial. Trying to escape from the situation by drinking and moving away to other city"
LETS FACE IT -Cyber-cheating or online extra-marital affair is a reality!! Even with no physical contact involved but the emotional and psychological attachment is many times greater than any physical extra-marital affair.
Over the last few months I have noticed a steady increase in the number of men and women who approach me to seek help in battling this addiction.
It starts as harmless flirting, which becomes a good friendship and finally takes over the entire thought process of an individual.
99% of those involved, deny it at first. It's only when their obsession about their "online partner" over-clouds their entire sense, they start destroying their relationships.
Psychological Research over 5 continents has proven that indulgence in such an activity happens as its easy, secretive and an excitement filled adventure.
Most cases are hidden within the subconscious of the guilty partner. This guilt tends to manifest itself as sadness, anxiety and feeling of disgust upon self, specially when the guilty partner becomes a parent or finds out his/her children to be involved with multiple sexual partners.
If you have an special "online" or "offline" friend, who has become the center of your thought process. Take the following quiz. Presence of 6 or more "yes" means you are involved in an "extra-marital relationship"
( for the purpose of this article, the term "online friend" is used to refer onto the male/female with whom an extra-marital cyber-relationship has been established)
1. Spending more than 2-3hours a day chatting or exchanging sms/messages with the same person i.e."online friend."
2. Thought Process is for most of the day preoccupied with thoughts of the "online friend".
3. Extreme concern to keep it as a secret. Going to length to try and concealing it from your friends, family and spouse.
Changing all your account passwords, creating new social networks/email accounts, concealing emails, changing his/her name on the blackberry messenger, etc.
4. High fear, irritation or anger if your spouse suddenly questions you about your online/cell phone activity.
5. Restlessness if not heard from him/her after a few hours. This restlessness calms only after contacting him/her.
6. More and more time is taken out of work, important schedules or even by waking up at night to contact your "online friend".
7. Higher comfort level in sharing your thoughts related to family, marriage, emotional and physical self with your online friend than your spouse.
8. Constant mental comparison between personality of your "online friend" and your spouse.
9. While in any form of physical intimacy with your spouse, your mind flashes the desire of being with your "online friend" instead.
10. Sharing sensitive information like provocative photos, bank or other financial details, personal body details or professional secret details with your "online friend" without having met him/her or verified his/her credentials.
11. Constantly planning to arrange business meetings, conferences or visits to spend time alone with your "online friend".
12. Constant denying to any emotional attachment to your "online friend", while you still spend a lot of time in the day thinking about him/her.
If you have scored 6 or more, you are into an online extra-marital affair.
The biggest side effect of an online-extra marital are the Withdrawal effects. - The moment you think or try to break a cyber-relationship, your mind is flooded with one or more of the following emotions - restlessness, guilt, anger, decreased self-esteem, hopelessness, worthlessness, sadness and pain.
The inability to battle these emotions drives you back to it. Making it an emotional trap which you cannot leave.
Emotional Addiction, Sexual Addiction and Psychological frustration are 3 common side effects that accompany most online extra-marital affairs.
For any assistance further, feel free to contact me-
(MBBS, PG.DPM, M.D.(Mind Mantra Wellness Concepts - Mumbai))
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