- Until now, there hasn’t been a study of the impact of Internet fidelity—or the lack thereof — on real-world relationships. Tweet This
- The good news from the iFidelity Survey is the clear majority of married men and women embrace an ethic of restraint online, steering clear of crossing romantic and sexual boundaries on smartphones, computers, and tablets... Tweet This
Nicole Brown barely made a sound in the shower as she FaceTimed with an old boyfriend. “Why? Because my husband and kids were in the next room, completely oblivious," she wrote in an online article about her experience. Brown went on to explain how a chance meeting with this man during a low point in her marriage led to a virtual affair that never got physical in real life but nevertheless helped pave the way to the dissolution of her marriage.
In the annals of crossing inappropriate online boundaries, FaceTiming another man from the shower, while your family is in the next room has got to rank up there, even if it’s not quite Anthony Weiner level. Sensational and salacious stories like these suggest that some men and women are getting into relationship trouble based on what they do online. But is there any harder evidence that this kind of activity is common among married and cohabiting Americans — and causing problems for them?
Until now, there hasn’t been a study of the impact of Internet fidelity — or the lack thereof — on real-world relationships. So, with a new nationally representative survey from YouGov, the National Marriage Project at the University of Virginia and the School of Family Life at Brigham Young University set out to explore the association between people’s attitudes and behaviors regarding what social scientists call “attractive alternatives” online and the quality of their relationships in the real world.
The good news from the iFidelity Survey is the clear majority of married men and women embrace an ethic of restraint online, steering clear of crossing romantic and sexual boundaries on smartphones, computers, and tablets that might land them in dangerous relationship territory. But the possibilities the Internet offers to explore romantic and sexual alternatives online, often anonymously, is proving more difficult for younger Americans and cohabiting couples to handle.
Continue reading at The Washington Post. . . .