The prevalence of social media means we have access to the virtual environment at any convenient time convenient, with a dizzying variety of platforms available to users depending on the activities they wish to participate in at any particular time. We can interact with our friendship circle via Facebook, rant, or poke fun at practically any topic we can think about on Twitter, or scroll through a kaleidoscope of images on Instagram.

Add dating sites into the mix, and, surprisingly, many users can find time to do much else! This does race important questions, one of which is this: does having such ready access to social media come with any side effects? More specifically, does social media draw people into relationship cheating?

Why do people cheat online?

To paraphrase those mountaineers who give their reasons for scaling any summit as “because it’s there,” many individuals see the Internet in the same way as the proverbial child locked inside a candy store. Site users are there to be connected with!

With so many site users to interact with, human nature often takes over, with browsing through websites sparking a curiosity to discover more about the person at the other end of the messages. Unlike bumping into a stranger in a bar who excites you, there is no need to treat an online encounter with the same clandestine attitude.

Casual conversations can easily spiral into different directions, with perfectly innocent remarks being interpreted as flirting. Anyone who finds themselves being on the receiving end of such behavior will naturally feel compelled to reciprocate.

How easy is it to cheat in the virtual environment?

Anyone who has no qualms about breaching the confidence they enjoy with their partner is liable to cheat in a variety of situations, whether this happens in a local bar or a chat room. Social media can certainly provide the perfect platform for potential cheaters to pursue their fantasies, but the urge to do so has to be within them from the outset.

infidelity, love, affair

What are the signs that someone is cheating?

People who have decided to behave in this way are hardly likely to advertise the fact, and anyone who has the remotest hint of Internet savvy can readily cover their tracks. After a stint of communicating with strangers they shouldn’t be passing such suggestive messages to, they will most likely cancel the evidence by deleting their Internet history.

Coming across a laptop or computer where browsing information is regularly scrubbed should be a warning sign in itself. Also, there may be individuals repeatedly showing up commenting on social media posts who are unfamiliar to you. When you ask who they are, does the explanation sound plausible?

How to define the fine line between flirting and cheating?

If you suspect your partner of cheating via their social media accounts, it can be extremely difficult to extract any sort of confession from them. After all, the line between flirting and infidelity can become blurred. Everyone loves to flirt, and social media gives us access to a diverse range of individuals who will readily exchange flirtatious messages and insert suggestive remarks into their online chat.

For the most part, this is purely an aspect of human behavior that is fairly innocuous – unless it happens regularly. If your partner feels the urge to flirt continuously, this might be an indication they are dissatisfied with other aspects of the partnership.

The bottom line is that relationships require a degree of trust, and if you are suspicious that your other half is cheating on you with an avatar, ask them about it, making it plain you are not happy with the situation.