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As with other addictions, tolerance to cybersex stimulation can develop, prompting the addict to take more and more risks to recapture the initial high, Dr. Online viewing that began as a harmless recreation can become an all-consuming activity and even lead to real sexual encounters with people met online.
Cybersex compulsives can become so involved with their online activities that they ignore their partners and children and risk their jobs. Cooper's survey, 20 percent of the men and 12 percent of the women reported they had used computers at work for some sexual pursuits.
A 44-year-old man married 26 years to a woman who became hooked on cybersex wrote: '' At first we had sex more than ever as I desperately tried to prove myself. I get strong pictures of what she did and lusted after, and I get repelled and feel bad.'' Women who become cybersex addicts may face even greater risks than their male counterparts.
In her survey, 91 women and 3 men in committed relationships said they had experienced serious adverse consequences, including broken relationships, from their partners' cybersex addictions.Researchers writing in the current issue of the journal Sexual Addiction and Compulsivity report that many of the men and women who now spend dozens of hours each week seeking sexual stimulation from their computers deny that they have a problem and refuse to seek help until their marriages, their jobs, or both, are in jeopardy.For some people, the route to compulsive use of the Internet for sexual satisfaction is fast and short, said Dr.Many companies now monitor employees' online activities, and repeated visits to sexually oriented sites have cost people their jobs.And some people, including two physicians, have landed in federal prison for two years because they downloaded child pornography when authorities were watching, Dr. Still, most who pursue cybersex consider it harmless and safe to do so.