Cybersex is the subject of one of the great debates that rage throughout online communities which discuss sexual matters. That it occurs is not questioned. Anecdotal proofs suggest that many, if not almost all people who discover real time online chat programmes will at least dabble with cybersex one one or more occasions. 

What is questioned by many is the reality of cybersex as a sexual act.

  • What is cybersex, anyway?

Cybersex is a method of making use of  one of a number of real time chat programmes (Various IRC clients, ICQ, MSN etc) to share a sexual experience
The participants imagine and describe a sexual experience happening between them. Some participants masturbate during this conversation, and others do not. In some cases the expressed emotion alone is as much stimulation as a participant desires.
The point of cybersex is to excite yourself and your partner, often to the point of orgasm.

When entered into in a non-flippant manner, cybersex can be a hugely intimate and arousing experience. On the other hand cybersex, when one is not in the correct frame of mind for it, can be excruciatingly boring, embarrassing, amusing or even slightly revolting. Whether cybersex works or not is even more mood-dependant than with RL sex.

  • Is cybersex the same as netsex?

Cybersex is known by a number of different names. Some people simply use "cyber" as the noun and "cybering" as the verb. Netsex is another name for sharing a sexual experience via a real time chat programme, as is ircsex. "One handed typing" is a commonly used euphemism for cybersex.

  • How can it be sex if you never touch each other?

To answer this question, one would have to define "sex" which is a very difficult thing to attempt.  If one accepts "sex" as being any interaction between two (or more) people for sexual gratification, cybersex, along with phone sex and exchanging dirty postcards, can indeed be defined as a type of sex.

  • If it's "only cybersex", is it cheating?

Any question that asks "is it cheating" is difficult to answer, and really only an individual can determine this by examining their own relationship and it's rules to find the answer that will be true for them. For some couples, any form of intimacy, sexual or not, is seen as cheating. For couples with some degree of "open" partnership it is likely that cybersex would not be seen as cheating. There is no way an outsider can make this judgment. 

With cybersex, as with any activity that makes you wonder or worry that it could be an infidelity there is a simple, easy to follow rule: ask your partner first.
If you feel unable to ask their permission you have answered your own question.

  • Are there risks involved in cybersex?

Just as there are emotional risks involved in entering any intimate relationship, there are emotional risks involved with cybersex. The less involved with your cybersex partner you are, the less emotional risk you expose yourself to.  Remember it's possible that your cybersex partner is not who or what they tell you they are.

The physical risks associated with cybersex are less than those associated with RL sex (you can't get pregnant, AIDS or raped in a chatroom or #channel) but they are still there. Firstly, there are the same risks you take by giving any person you do not know well your telephone number or address. It's best to be cautious about giving these details to anyone. Secondly there are the risks of masturbating in a place and position you are unfamiliar with. Beware of hot cups of coffee and of breakables in the vicinity.

And there's always the risk of getting caught in an embarrassing position.

 

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