Cyber Infidelity – The New Seduction

Online dating is one of those things that the Internet was made for: People trying to meet people for love and sex in the supposed privacy of their homes. Cyber Infidelity is a book by Dr Eve, who’s real name is Dr Marlene Wasserman based in Cape Town, South Africa. She’s South Africa’s answer to the American Dr Laura, and is known for her regular radio talk shows.

We first met when I conducted my second survey about online dating and online sexuality in 2006.

Recently she sent me a copy of her book, Cyber Infidelity ISBN 978-0798171182. It’s my pleasure to review this book.

Cyber Infidelity the New Seduction by Dr EveCyber Infidelity is very readable, perhaps because of the topic of infidelity which usually sparks curiosity across the gender lines. It’s also a good read because of the personal stories it contains, which provide deep insight into the motivations why people choose to find lovers and sexual partners online in this day and age.

The first three chapters lay a very good base for modern relationships. The Internet has transformed the way we conduct ourselves not only in business but also in the most intimate spaces of our bedrooms. As a couples therapist, Dr Eve shares insights into the rapid changes in behaviour.

Chapter 5 describes the triple A engine: affordable, anonymous, accessible. This is the pivotal factors differentiating online infidelity from offline infidelity. You can say it’s the difference between cheating before the Internet and after the Internet and mobile phones became so easily accessible.

Sometimes it feels like Dr Eve is encouraging the infidelity. On page 169 she reveals a shocking statistic: over 75% of relationships that begin through an affair end in divorce. The chapter on porn habits is eye-opening. A few surprises may be learned from the porn watching habits of women, which is not commonly discussed as the stigma sees porn as the problem of (lonely) men.

The stories in this book reminds me of those I first read in Nancy Friday’s My Secret Garden. They are at once confessions, revelations and sometimes sad. They show what’s missing from the relationships and why the myth of “settling down” is so unsatisfactory.

The topic of infidelity raises curiosity our own personal natures. To what extent are we still living in a monogamous society with the rise of the Internet, social media and mobile phones?

Dr Eve aka Marlene Wasserman in her Cape Town office as a sex therapistOne of my favourite aphorisms in this book is that “shame and blame are the twin sisters of guilt.” The Ashley Madison website is where the author collected much of her first hand accounts of cyber infidelity. The customers of this website are not ashamed to share their innermost fantasies. So do you blame them for choosing to engage in cyber infidelity, which many times does not lead to an offline meeting? [After this book was published, was hacked and some shocking facts about the female users were released.]

One of the radical facts emerging from the book, is that women are much more sexually liberated than before the rise of the Internet.

There are few surprises in in the statistics because they are all from English speaking countries. Perhaps a sequel may include comparison with China and India, which together account for probably half the Internet users in the world, and vastly different cultural norms. It would be fascinating to evaluate how the Internet has changed the sexual behaviour of these nations.


Reuel Leach reviews Conquer CyberOverload

This week my friend Reuel Leach, who first published this report on Cellular Costs in South Africa, reviews a book sent me a while ago. We both are avid users of technology and enjoy helping people get more from real life, and technology second.

  • Book Title: Conquer Cyber Overload
  • Author: Joanne Cantor Ph.D
  • ISBN 9780984256808
  • Finished reading 29 June 2011

Joanne has addressed one of the almost incurable diseases of our time: addiction to technology, the very thing we thought would make life easier and save us time has become a major burden and is affecting our mental and physical health. Joanne explains how the mind works and explains that multi tasking is maybe not as good as we think it to be. She also explains how this cyber overload is affecting our relationships long term. I believe we should all create a code of ethics or rules for ourselves and she gives us useful guidelines to do so to help create a more balanced individual and family. We need to educate both children and adults on this subject. In fact this should be a subject that should be included in the curriculums at school. I highly recommend this book. Its short, concise and made for those who find themselves very busy and have little or no time to read. After all, time is the most valuable asset we have. Every second we waste of our lives is wasted forever.

Reuel Leach, is available as a speaker at your next conference. To book him simply send your request through our contact page.


The Art and Strategy of Being a Superflirt by Tracey Cox

Superflirt by Tracey CoxWatching two people flirt is kind of like watching a car wreck. There’s all the discomfort, the unmistakable fear and the inability, for the life of you, to look away. But that’s until you learn the tricks of the trade, according to dating (and sex) expert Tracey Cox.

Review by Faraaz Mahomed…

Superflirt’ is one of Ms. Cox’s brand of in-your-face, brutally open, books that aims to make anyone instantly appealing. With an emphasis on body language and unspoken signals, the book delves into the murky underworld that is the mind of the single guy or girl on the prowl. And murky it certainly is. Devious even. Which is exactly why, argues Cox, anyone looking to arrive single and leave attached needs a well-orchestrated plan of attack.

From the section on the ‘Ten second turn-on’ to the illustrated guides on the correct way to stand, sit and do pretty much anything else, those of us who find such ‘advice’ slightly difficult to stomach may find reason to object to the book’s over-the-top promises. But anything’s worth a try. Right?

Courtesy of this self-styled guru, the reader is invited to unlock the mystery behind every look, every gesture and every carefully-planned expression of interest. The author shows us just how elaborate one can be when flirting and just how clueless some of us really are. The slightest touch is often momentously significant. So too, is the coquettish smile or the confident stride. I can just feel the light bulbs going off everywhere.

So not only should you know where to put this and when to do that but what about being able to tell if it’s working? The book is particularly useful if you’re interested in knowing how to tell if your prey is up for it or not. It even has a section called, “Help, it doesn’t seem to be working! Are they interested or aren’t they?” Maybe not the most convincing advertisement, but nothing’s foolproof. At least she admits it.

There are also tips on chatting a prospective partner up and the all-important sex chapter. As with everything else, Cox seems to be privy to a wealth of hitherto undisclosed information. The sex signals are mesmerisingly accurate and almost irritatingly revealing. I guess some of us will have to find some new tricks.

Cox has a background in psychology and it shows. The reader is navigated not simply through the signals but, also, the intentions behind them. And she has countless anecdotal stories to back her up. Beware though. For someone who has all the answers, she seems to have been around the block and then some. Look a little closer, and you’ll find that Cox is ‘happily settled’, whatever that means. Perhaps, then, there’s no one better to share some secrets. Either way, there’s no doubting her worldwide success. ‘Superflirt’ may not be everyone’s cup of tea (forgive the heinous cliché) but it is, at worst, an entertaining read about a topic where some of us will need all the help we can get. Stylish and creative, anyone would be taken in by the book’s appearance and swept away by its promises.

‘Superflirt’ by Tracey Cox published by Dorling Kindersley