What is cyber-sex? Also known as “cyber”, “cybering”, Erotic Role Play (ERP), “erping”, and several other words or phrases. Is it sex? Is it just a form of multi-person erotica writing? Is it “a relationship”? Is it “cheating”? Can it be part of a long-distance romance? Can it START a long-distance romance? There’s been lots of documentaries on online romances started in or ended by meeting people in online games or communities; none have ever quite hit on precisely my experiences with it.
So now you’re gonna get my take on the whole mess 😛
What constitutes the act of cybering?
Cybering, by my understanding, involves people using text to convey actions, expressions, sounds and emotions, creating a virtual act of sex without actual intercourse. This can be done via cell phone or over the internet with a computer. It’s ALWAYS text-based; when adding a video camera, that becomes webcamming (different blog post later), and if it’s strictly audio then it’s basically phone-sex, reguardless of whether it’s over a computer or an actual phone line. Originally used in old-style BBS sites, it’s expanded to typical IM programs (such as ICQ, MSN, Yahoo IM, etc.), and then to MMO games (such as Everquest and, more notably, World of Warcraft; there are even entire guilds in WoW dedicated strictly to “Erotic Role Play” or “ERPing”).In MMO games, it’s typically done through the use of “emotes” in-game, I.E. text commands and/or character actions. It can range from simple (“im fukkin u so hard bb“, “fuk ya mak me cum wit ur big dik bb“), to the elaborate (“My hands slowly carres up your outer thighs, sliding your velvet dress up along your body as my lips caress every inch of your skin“, “I gasp at the sensation of the cool night air against my skin, my nipples growing errect with the breese and my excitement at your touch…“). Some people get right into it, and it can be an aid to mutual masturbation, while others just write the interactions with both hands on the keyboard.
There are 2 main… let’s say “camps” of cybering, in my view o the world: cybering when single, and cybering when in a relationship. Of the latter, it’s split into 2 as well: cybering with your partner/spouce, and cyber-adultary.
The majority of my views and thoughts on cybering have come about through my personal experiences with it within the IMVU community; I’ve used IMVU since it’s open beta release in 2003, so I’ve been around the proverbial block.
Cybering when Single:
When you’re single, honestly, this is the place where pretty much anything goes. As far as I’m concerned, online isn’t real life. It’s not real sex, there’s no real intercourse, and there’s no real commitments. This should be made clear, however, and there’s nothing stopping people from making a choice to take a relationship that starts online & has included cybering and making it a relationship in the real world. A lot of people mistakenly assume that if you meet someone online and you cyber with them, that there’s an unspoken commitment that’s been made when, in reality, no commitments have been made and if either are caught cybering with other people, you have no right to scream or get angry or guilt-trip or ANYTHING! Now, I ALWAYS make sure to be blunt and forward with the fact that I’m NOT exclusive to ANYONE online, I’m single IRL and will be single online until my IRL situation changes; there’s been several times when I’ve had a few friends I’ve made in IMVU that I ended up eventually cybering with, and one woman has flipped out at me because she found I’d taken pictures of not only my time with her (which she had agreed to let me take), but a couple days later also took shots of the time I spent with an different woman (also taken and uploaded with permission of those involved), as if the first woman and I were a couple and I’d cheated on her. EXCEPT WE WEREN’T A COUPLE AT ANY TIME, we were just friends who enjoyed the way each one cybered.
There are still a few rules of ettiquet that, as a man, must be fillowed (and rarely are):
1) Never assume the woman wants to cyber
2) Never start a conversation with “a/s/l?”, “wanna fuck”, “wanna cyber” or “get naked”. The only women who would jump on that are underage and jail-bait; you WILL be either banned or arrested.
3) Always check their info (on IMVU, their profile) to see if they’re single or lesbian
4) Always check that the age on their profiles is their REAL age. You can still be arrested for cybering with anyone underage.
5) When they’ve openly admitted to wanting to cyber with you, always tell them up-front that, if they are going to cyber with you, that does NOT mean they have exclusive rights to you and if they can’t handle cybering without demanding a monogamous online relationship, it’s not worth it.
6) Don’t be rude, but don’t be pushed into making commitments after-the-fact if they can’t hold to their word about commitments.
7) Never assume they’re masturbating as you cyber with them
8) It’s rude to masturbate if they aren’t; the exception to this is if they specifically ask you to.
Aside from that, try to be at least moderately articulate; any decent partner will appreciate a guy who can set their loins afire through their words. Cybering when single is where you can get into some REEEEEEAALLLYY kinky shit, too; like BDSM, Master/Slave, Vampire and Furry orgies, Demon Lord Harums… It’s the epitomy of Internet Rule # 34
Again, use your own discretion, but have some frikkin fun. You’re single; it’s not like you’ll wake up one morning, look down at your junk, and find a nanobot infestation from the cyborg-furry-rabbit-demoness-unicorn-pixie gangbang last night. It’s rare for anyone at these kinds of things to want to guilt-trip you into a relationship; it’s more likely that you’ll be added to a few people’s buddy lists and invited to future virtual orgies.
And when it comes to the desire for sex while you’re in university, cybering is probably a lot less strain than going to some random party, getting wasted, and waking up in a small town beside some person you’re hoping is a woman who’s face you’re sure you saw on a wanted poster at the post office last week… and finding a nanobot infestation on your junk.
Where things get dicey is when you’re single, meet someone online, become friends, have fun cybering with them, and both of you start to notice your feelings grow to being beyond casual friends with cyber-benefits. This is a grey area I still have issues in understanding with. Personally, I recommend against this at all costs, unless you and/or the other person are fairly well-off financially in real life. Trust me; it’s a huge heart-ache on both sides, otherwise. For one, there’s the question of who would move to who, the cost of a move of that magnitude (most likely half-way across the continent), then there’s immigration laws, passports and citizenship issues if the two are in separate countries, like one in the USA and the other in Canada… From the perspective of an american moving to Canada, it’s tough; you’re looking at at least $2000 over the first couple years, on top of the fact that for those first 2 years the american is not permitted to hold a job in Canada, and if they go home to the states, even for a day or two, the whole process starts over again. If you go straight away for a marriage visa, you have to show physical proof that the two of you were dating IN REAL LIFE for at least 6 months prior; webcam online doesn’t cut it. We’re talking receipts, pictures, souvenirs, stories, and eyewitness accounts.
If the costs don’t daunt you and you’re able to find a way to make it work, then for gawds’ sake, take the time to visit each other for a year or so first. Spend 2 – 4 weeks together at a time, because that will make dealing with the Visa branch of the government a ton easier. It will ALSO give both people a chance to learn how well the two of you can live together and if you’d end up killing each other. Who a person is online is NOT who they are in real life, no matter how honest or open they are with each other. It just can’t be expressed long distance; you have to meet and live face to face to understand the truth of each other.
Cybering with Your Partner/Spouce & Cyber-Adultery
When you’re in a relationship, cybering can be a great way to be intimate with your other half when you have to be over a long distance. Frankly, I think webcam is better, but with a program like IMVU, cybering becomes like a digital, long-distance sexual roleplay. Costumes can be much more varied than IRL, have no cleanup, and are much less expensive overall. Whether you met your spouse online or they’re just having to be away for an extended period, such as for university or for soldiers, cybering is a good way to keep the home fires primed, if you get my meaning 😉
The rules for cybering are the same as those for any monogamous relationship. Emotionally, cybering some random chick that you met in a chat room is the same as going out and banging a hooker. It’s still cheating. That said, there are situations where a relationship is on the rocks, and one or both feel abandoned or abused, and they might turn to cybering as a way of trying to find that feeling of being desired and attractive without going to the extreme of meeting someone at a bar; maybe they feel like the relationship could still be salvaged, they just are waiting for some obstacle to be out of the way. This does NOT make it right; just makes it, in my mind, forgivable. Sometimes a person tries to be good and tries to make things work, but if your partner is not willing to meet you half-way… there’s only so far a man can be pushed before he reaches his breaking point. If the woman is lucky, he’ll still want to try to work things out; let it go and work things out. On the opposite side, if you’re with someone and they’re making you feel unwanted, unattractive, like a failure, undesirable… and you’re online one night, chatting up a nice, attractive woman who is telling you all the things you wish you’re girlfriend or spouse would tell you but won’t, and she’s telling you she wants you and wants to treat you better and how sexy you are… and you’re thinking of giving her what she wants so you can feel desired and wanted again… Don’t for a moment think it’s ok and that you can still work things out with your girlfriend. Just get up, go to the woman you’re with, and tell her you’re done. When you get to that breaking point, it’s already past over. It’s just not worth it to cheat & try to stay with your girlfriend; you’ll both be better off going your separate ways before enjoying that virtual hawtie.
When a relationship is good, and you cyber with others anyways…. well, then you’re just a douche and get what you deserve. No sane man would cheat on his spouse when things are working and they’re happy.
IN THE END Cybersex can be a lot of fun, a good de-stresser, and keep a guy sane when single for extended periods. Be wary, though, of ‘stupid’ people who can’t tell the difference between online writing fun and a real life relationship, and be aware of what you’re getting into should you decide to make an online friendship into a serious, real life romantic relationship.