My boyfriend indulges himself in online sex chats, encounters, engagements. He does it secretly and doesn’t like to have sex with me. We’ve been together 2 years. Does he get a satisfaction from it? a thrill? I don’t think he has physically cheated but why the online relationships? Is this a psychological issue that stems from childhood? is he aware of the problem? And can it be cured? (age 40, from US)Boyfriend with Online Sex Addictions
Boyfriend with Online Sex Addictions
First and foremost you need to ask your boyfriend these questions, not us. I can answer based on general psychological concepts, but only he can tell you what he personally gets from this behavior. The fact that he does it in secret and appears to prefer cybersex over real intimacy with his partner is concerning. I’m sure he is getting some sort of satisfaction from it or he wouldn’t continue the behavior. And again, only he can tell you why he does it and if he is aware of the problem. I can tell you that there is a self-reinforcing and addictive quality to internet use in this manner. For some, it is much safer to be intimate with a distant or imagined partner than the one lying next to you, but it can be quite destructive to relationships.
I suggest that you begin speaking to him directly about your concerns too. Begin with an inquisitive approach, rather than a judgmental one, so that he feels comfortable talking to you about it, but you eventually need to share your concerns. Let him know how it makes you feel and that you desire more physical intimacy with him. Finally, it might be a good idea to see a couple’s therapist together.
All the best,
Dr. Holly Counts