“You could walk a couple through a facilitated session,” she says, “while they are in the privacy of their own bedroom.” Cory Silverberg, a sexual health educator and founding member of Come As You Are, an education-based sex store in Toronto, says, “What’s good about cybersex is that it allows people to conceive of new possibilities,” whether that means a disabled person gaining greater access to the sexual sphere or someone “fulfilling their fetish fantasies beyond anything that we could have imagined.” The keys to healthy virtual sex, he says, include consent of all partners, a “sense of good will” (not going out and “trolling and stalking online”), and a respect for boundaries — “making sure that you’re not exposing more real information about yourself than you’re really comfortable with.” Like any technology, though, virtual sex comes with its risks.Kimberly Young, Ph D, who is the founder and director of the Center for Internet Addiction Recovery in Bradford, Pennsylvania, agrees that virtual worlds can allow individuals to explore new types of sexual behavior.But, he says, the real-world functionality of computer-enabled sex toys hasn’t really caught up with its potential.“There are some cool ideas that just don’t work in implementation,” he says.I was having sex with a Dutch girl when my wife walked in. “I don’t like the phrase ‘virtual sex,’” Lynn says, “because it trivializes the experience. “It’s not sex but it is sex,” says Regina Lynn, author of The Sexual Revolution 2.0 and a columnist on sex and technology for
Lying is cheating.” “Everyone’s always interested in where the line [with cheating] lies,” says Cory Silverberg.
She estimates that men comprise 60% of the clients who come to her center seeking help for sexual online compulsivity issues.
Moreover, Young says, the sheer variety of sexual experiences offered by the Internet can present a challenge to monogamous relationships.
I don’t know where the real user was located, but our virtual meeting space within Second Life was called “The Netherlands.” Or maybe “she” was really a he, controlling a female avatar. If it’s not clear already, “virtual sex” can be a little complicated.
But there was a real person on a computer somewhere in the world making her avatar have sex with my avatar by clicking a pink ball on the ground.