Virtual Adultery and Cyberspace Love
There is now a new world which has welcomed over four million inhabitants in the last three years. Its name is Second Life and it’s accessed through the Internet. Here in this virtual world, each inhabitant is an entirely unique avatar, a fantasy creation that’s usually taller, stronger, fitter, and more attractive than the person controlling it on the other side of the screen…but Second Life isn’t a game, it’s a virtual life fueled by real wants and desires. And for some, when life and love are less than perfect, the escape it offers can be more seductive than the real world.
Documentary series about everyday dramas. Carolyn is a 37 year-old mother of four in the midst of a passionate affair. She's spending up to 18 hours a day with her lover online on Second Life, the website. She has never met him, but, to her husband of nine year's dismay, she is abandoning her family and flying 5,000 miles to London to start a new life with her lover, Elliot. What makes this website, which has three million members, so compelling?
This is an addiction. A monster that takes over. Turns a sane normal person who once had strong morals into something they dont recognise. These ones who are on these virtual reality sites, need understanding for what it is...a terrible insidious addiction. look up OLAG read it perhaps many of you will understand more
That's right. Emotional infidelity to the extreme. But it is worse when one is filming oneself naked and sharing. Web cam live sex too. Yeah, a portal to believe that relationships like that can become meaningful.
Hard to believe that a person can really care for the one committed to him/her by behaving this unfaithfully. Maybe being responsible in life has lost its lustre. If one enjoys being responsible in a relationship then this kind of infidelity will not likely happen.
But couples consent to this kind of behavior too. The man or woman in a face to face relationship having this kind of fun online. Taking advantage of the digital world. It is ruinous nonetheless. More evidence of how technology separates us from each other.
Second Life has been the bame of my marriage. My wife has been unfaithful online and it hurt me and our relationship as much as if it happened in real life.
Was that marriage worth saving??
Did you notice they didn't even look at each other while they were picnicking on Primrose Hill in London. (just like in the cyberworld) It was a farce from beginning to end. How could they expect to connect looking , and acting so differently from their avatars,with no background or history. Who would be fooled? The real question however is WHY. Poor kids and husband.
it would never work for me -- i like a small house, almost constant rain and grey skies, knitting, and conversation about philosophy, science, religion, and politics. i have a lot to say, but who would be interested? they're too busy flirting and having sex. yawn ...
Do you knit?
I don't know how people have time for these make believe games
I have been on second life for three years but only use it occasionally.I am very selective who I talk with(I don't really chat with ppl much)and it's more an interest in what ppl create on there.I would NEVER regularly chat with someone else's husband or accept advances-ever.
If you allow yourself to use something like this to fill a void in your marriage....you are treading dangerous waters.Unfortuneatly I caught my husband talking with a woman on google+.and instead of being like Lee(the poor husband on the documentary)I took matters into my own hands.
I found out my husband had an email he didn't mention(he is not good at hiding things)I luckily entered with the password he uses for a lot of accounts.And found some chats and comments that were inappropriate.
It was obvious my husband was getting emotional about this woman who he said did not know he was married(who knows if that is true).I also got on his ipad and looked at the womans page and saw comments of a romantic nature.He left it wide open for me to catch.
So I got on his account and made comment on the womans page to make known he has a WIFE.My husband is angry with me(too bad)and the woman blocked him.He said he was about to end it himself but I doubt that.Had I not stepped in he would probably still be doing it and had threatened to try to contact her.He said I feared that contact...well,duh?I told him if I found out he did he would end up divorced(which would not bode well for him on many levels).He does not truly understand any contact with this woman would end our marriage or that what he was doing was emotional infidelity.
Make no mistake ppl, these online affairs can damage a marriage and end it because they get this fantasy in thier mind that it will be so much better than the real life relationship they have...and can also led to physical affairs in the flesh.This woman told my husband she wanted to meet him(states away).
Don't just sit there and do nothing ..like Lee...step in and put a stop to it and hope you can mend your marriage afterward.
I totally feel for the real life husband in the documentary. I have discovered my husband having a cyber affair on Second Life, and after a reasonable amount of investigation, I find that I feel violated, cheated upon and I do not know where to go next...confront him, or see a lawyer about a divorce, or seek marriage counseling or all of those. We've been married for 25+ years. His attachment to these cyber girlfiends does not seem to be a game, seems real.
good thing she's thinking of her family
Her husband is the perfect example of why nice guys always finish last.
That guy is the ultimate cuckolded husband. What the **** is he doing? I'd draw the line at having an online relationship with someone - let alone going out to meet them! If he had any balls he would divorce that b*tch straight up, proxy all communication with her through his solicitor and take custody of the children. Then he should find someone better to replace this selfish **** of a wife and help raise his kids.
That's really not fair. I'm sure he did what he thinks is best for him as well as his children and wife. Because unlike someone who has nothing but ego to care about, some one cares their loved ones. He saved his marriage, did he not?
Lee schould take a hammer and smash the computer to pieces!
He was in Love, then he saw her for real....
Man I cannot believe how weak people can be, can't be bothered to get off their butt and do something about their life. Oh well, the more they spend time in some virtual fantasy, the less competition in the real world.
Its funny, its obvious any one would want to live a life that was as easy as Second Life, but as we all know, its not real. It does n't even look good, the animations suck, and its limited in what you can do. Actually I think it would shell shock them if they could live in the Second Life world for a few hours, and find that things they take for granted in real life, would be missing, such as the five senses. In Second Life you wouldn't feel anything, since that isn't part of the program, no taste, when making love you would have no feeling what so ever, if the game even allows you to do that, seldomly you'd glitch and be bound to do anything the programmers wanted you to do.
LOL, I bet that guy thought that he was good at playing the piano
My and my girlfriend met in second life and we now live together in real life so i can relate.
Your last sentence is a bit of an open door and goes for anything you watch. We know that it’s always biased or even scripted.
Talking about the couple: I think it is very insulting of you to call a kind hearted man a milquetoast. You know as well as I do that even awesome guys and girls can lose their attraction for a partner and it is one of the challenges of a relationship (always bumpy!) to find each other back and move on, especially when kids are involved.
When you watch the last minutes of the documentary and see the man talking and the woman making scornful faces and showing her despise for him, it hurts me deeply. She has no idea how much he has held her high when talking about her “state” to the kids.
She’s one of the many second life addicts and has fallen into the virtual “real love”” trap. It happens to almost everybody in second life and is causing a lot of misery. Fortunately most people recognize the trap in time, but for many relationships in the real world too much damage has been done and they are beyond repair.
I wish this family all the best, and hope the kids will have 2 committed parents.
Final comment:This chick's husband really must love her. She's obviously psychotic, a fact Elliott recognized as soon as he clapped eyes on her, which is why he couldn't get rid of her fast enough. He implied that they didn't even have sex. Any person who is ready to abandon her kids for "even a 5% chance it might work out" would raise huge red flags with any sane guy. She's the most selfish, immature, obsessive/compulsive, narcissistic person I've seen in a while -- and how she inspired such devotion in her husband is quite beyond me. Her type will always cheat again and he's basically told her that he'll accept any bad behaviour on her part, but can you imagine the rage boiling up inside those kids?
Quite possibly, but he's also a bit of a milquetoast, isn't he? Passive-aggressive, annoyingly long-suffering. Clearly he also has his problems. If he was such an awesome guy, why did she seek something outside their relationship? Remember, you're only seeing the story the filmmaker wants you to see, which makes it all too easy to come to the filmmaker's foregone conclusions.
Certain people take their partners for granted and believe that what they already have is not enough, regardless what the poor man/woman they are with does or does not. He is clearly in love with the woman he married, not the annoying bored self-absorbed house-wife she became. True, he might have his issues and/or flaws that she grew tired of, and at that point you either try to fix the relationship or you quit altogether. Having your children sense that something is wrong (and I know from experience what the kids are feeling), watching their father suffer and still protect her, that is bad parenting, that is awful. The kids are totally justified for hating her. She's the one wrong, even if her husband tried to bore her to death for the last 10 years, she's still the awful one.
Let me get something straight: these two are getting misty eyed looking at a book of computer graphics that memorialize an imaginary event that "took place" during a computer game and was "attended" by a bunch of other cartoons? That's what's happening here, right? Ok, just checking.
That's only what it looks like on the surface for a person who doesn't understand how immersion and identity/identification can work in virtual worlds. Players in virtual worlds undergo a process of more strongly identifying with their character over time, which can (for some, but certainly not everyone) culminates in the player identifying completely with the avatar. They are no longer playing a character or even representing themselves through an avatar. The are now a persona, they are that character. This is a recognized and accepted progression in virtual worlds, studied by all manner of professionals from various fields from psychology to neuroscience to game design (and game design is something I'm studying at the moment).
These people need professional psychiatric help.
I agree, they realy need it, sorry i don't want to insult anyone but it's right.
Most disturbing part for me was the comment attributed to the 13 year old son speaking to his mother that she would have been better off if he was never born. These children are being abandoned by their mother and I believe are at high risk of sucide in their teen years which we all know can be very difficult anyway. Putting her own "happiness" ahead of the mental health of her offspring is disgraceful.
STAND YOUR GROUND MAN! LEAVE THAT BITCH! Relationships are over rated anyway, just a pain in the ass
I think he's trying to save the marriage for the kids and because he loves her. True, he should just leave her and find someone better, but I don't feel like judging the poor guy too much.
after watching a documentary about #SecondLife i realise that people withing this game are just id**ts...#LifeIsGood #SecondLife sucks
The best way to not become a victim of someone using that program is to buy a computer. Get on the same website. Find the guy or girl the person is messing around with and do one of two things. One is seduce your own significant other posing as someone else. Or disrupt their little romance by being a nuscience during their activities. Or act suspicious getting on your own computer on the same program and act secretive mimicking all of their actions by acting the same distant way making the other party more and more paranoid. Then have them come out with it.
Sounds like fun, but I just cannot sink that low.
I, personally, would like someone WILLINGLY sitting by my side... WANTING to be with me. If they feel the need to go somewhere else to find something else, I wish them the best. If I'm having that much suspicion, trust is already gone or seriously challenged, which tells me the relationship needs to end. All the "investigating" is a crazy-maker, in my opinion.
Sadly, this is a marriage in crisis. People act out in different ways and fundamental problems are at the base of it. It is easy to throw out judgements, yet useless if you haven't been there yourself.
Unlike so many who've posted here that have a judgemental view of the marriage, I for one consider this a fascinating character study. It's quite apparent that the key issue here is "lack". Neither the wife nor her cyber-partner would feel so driven if they already felt complete enough within themselves, a cardinal sign that the comings and goings in their "real" life aren't satisfactory enough and hence the suffering(an earlier poster citing the Buddhist take on this). And the disappointment experienced by the wife upon meeting her cybermate obviously came from insatiable romantic fantasies so it was doomed from the start(quite possibly, she didn't want it to succeed anyway, realizing on an unconscious level that the transformation into another "real" relationship would be an overwhelming task, what with abandoning her family back in the States). Perhaps a happy ending is in sight given that her husband is so overwhelmingly forgiving though the ultimate "cure" for this would have to be achieving a genuine wholeness in her life so that the temptation to go astray doesn't arise with such fervor.
her avatar is very ugly. you should see mine.
Carolyns' story reminds me of that news report of two South Korean parents who starved their 3 month old baby because they were too busy playing and interacting with a online/virtual baby (its a game like SIMs where you raise and care for a baby as if it were real ). >_> Seriously, the clicking and plugging into the computer phenomenon has gotten out of hand these days. What's next... surgically implanting ports down along our spinal column like in the Matrix and plug ourselves into a computer to experience sex? Truly losing our humanity with all this immersion into technology. I can't wait till an asteroid or some natural phenomenon wipes the human species already before it degrades or embarrasses itself any further.
I'm probably in a minority, but I think easy-access, on-demand porn, apart from its primary erotic function, is kinda educational?and I do not mean the 'how-to' variety of education.
Not only does easy-access, on-demand porn provide for erotic discharge, but it also zooms, close-up, to view our neighbor's bedroom fantasies, wants, needs and desires, providing one with the smug, self-satisfying reassurance that you're no more boring than they are!
And the porn-industry, and the religion-industry, feed off one another.
Porn makes 'repentance' necessary.
I just love a church advertising salvation in flickering neon lettering atop a
stiff steeple and, inside, cajoling repentance for one's sins, preaching against depravities and sins of the flesh while selling same wrapped in brown paper wrapping out the door of the church's backside in exchange for thirty pieces
of silver, thus ensuring need for a return visit through its front end, for yet another injection of salvation?free, for the price of repentance.
Slide to your knees on the cushion's ease and drop a coin in the poor-box, please.
LOL! 10:53 he says they spent sometimes 9 hours together online, and that doesn't happen in real life. This makes me LOL so hard, this guy has probably never had a relationship or even a real job. XD
HAHAHAHAHA this made me pee a little
Hoe. fa. sho.
He so should have dump her ass she doesn't deserve a guy thats half as decent as he is and im glad she got shut down by that pomey bloke!
I don't have anything against people that start off their relationship online, but what that woman did is pathetic! She is just pathetic, and does not deserve the family that stands by her.
Keep in mind you only saw what the filmmakers wanted you to see. You only
got the story they told you. If her family was so awesome she would have
felt no need to do that. The film needed a villain, so they made her into
It could just as easily have been a story about a man who was such a dweeb
that he lost his wife to a virtual romance, and it would have looked like he
deserved it for being such a loser.
loser for keeping the family together? for providing everything? he should have left her YEARS when he first saw that they are simply too different and their relationship is doomed to fail. He wanted a simple and happy family but she wanted freedom and excitement in life.
Keep in mind you only believe that because that's the story the filmmaker
wanted to tell, which is never the truth. You totally missed my main point.
Critical thinking... YOU CAN DO EET.
You guys need to move this off of Google Video, which is going bye-bye.
These are the saddest, most pathetic situations I have ever seen in my life. I think most of the people featured in this documentary have serious low self-esteem issues. It's just really, really sad.
That woman is disgraceful! Whilst living with her husband she pretty much turns him into a single parent, and obviously had a terrible effect on her children if they openly say that they are less important than her computer. If she felt depressed she could have found a much better way to overcome that, a way that wouldn't have devastated her children.
I feel terrible for her family. Her husband is a very loving, patient and forgiving man, I hope he finds someone else who actually deserves that.
What I found telling was the line where she says in the voice-over, as she's about to meet up with her avatar-lover in real time in the UK, "Most people wouldn't open that Pandora's Box, but I'm like that... I challenge myself... etc. etc."
First off, one hopes viewers realize, the opening of the box by Pandora in the original story was a stupid move, the indulgence of a weakness, and in the end, a disaster. So the analogy is apt only in an ironic way.
Second, this "I challenge myself... " is the kind of self-congratulatory sickness which is pervasive in today's more privileged cultures, perhaps particularly so in America (which is where I'm from).
She's congratulating herself with psychological platitudes, to make herself feel better. But for God's sake, her "challenge" which she's so boldly undergoing is to leave her devoted husband and children for an online lover? Ridiculous!
Her "challenge" would have been far more noble and better for all had she summoned the guts to switch off her computer, work with her husband to figure out what was wrong with her relationship, and stay to raise her children come what may, as she promised to do when she took her original wedding vows.
We are a world that's become too easy on ourselves when it comes to doing what we're supposed to do, rather than indulging urges.
Oh yeah and I do think Carol was completely selfish.
How funny. It was probably for the best that Carol did go to England. Now she can take a look at what it is she really has in 'real life' and realize its not so bad. She has a patient husband who loves her and the reality of life is that once you make certain choices it means closing the door on others. You can't have everything.
oh shut up everyone!! who are you to say someone else is selfish? you don't know her, you don't know the emotions she experienced on this game, you don't know what the other guy was saying to her, we don't know what she was saying to him! we're human and how she's respondin is human and many many people experience this same online relationship, it's not something you can control.......
It's sad that many resort to saying "we're human" to justify selfish, dysfunctional behavior. Everything humans do is "human." Jeffrey Dahmer did a very human thing. So did Adolf Hitler. You simply can't justify one behavior as "human," yet not justify other behaviors as "human." It's part of the sick arrogance of humans altogether, as if it being "human" makes it perfectly fine. It says nothing about the action, but rather makes for mental masturbation of the highest order.
I agree with J F. Being human isn't an excuse that makes up for mental masturbation of THE highest order!
Keep it real you guys...
I can see how this can be so alluring for the average person. Reality SUCKS! thats we we read books,watch movies, play video games,get addicted to drugs or commit suicide.
The bhuddists were right when they said life is suffering. The constant need for humans to find an escape from it is extremely understandable. Watching this made me visit the second life site out of curiousity. However the prospect of having to interact with others who are most likely too lack lustre or unintelligent to make it in the real world are probably just as perpetually beige in this virtual one and i'd have to bother engaging in communication with them. So ill just stay in my own wonderland. There i move all the peices on the chess board and the burden of human companionship vitually real or real in life hasnt the power to taint my never ending story.
You dont need second life when theres the glorious mechanism of the human mind, virtual reality is still reality. Daydreaming is the cure for that. what you have locked inside the imagination is true fantasy.The real door to freedom is a dream. All anyone needs is one good story. One good story to the imagination is like the big bang, it births an expanding universe thats yours alone to keep, its like your introspective love child.
Carolyn is being extremely ungrateful and selfish. She has a lovely, paitent, understanding Husband who stands by her side regardless of the fact that she doesn't seem to give him much love in return. I even bet you that he would defend her if he saw me saying this and she has several beautiful children. If you ask me, I don't see why she needs a second life. She has everything anyone could ever want around her.
What's a pity. Sade world. Getting out of it is difficult. No salvation outside!
What the **** is this? I wish they would've had this sh^t years ago.It would've spared me countless eposodes with the Misses. Hell, if I didn't feel in the mood that night,I'd just have her click on the web and have at it. That would be great! No more of her slobbering on me like a St.Bernard in heat. No more worthless conversations. What more could you ask for? As far as I'm concerned she needs a lifetime membership! Finally I have found my escape from a perverted wife who expects to have sex twice a month!
The Battlestar Galactica music made me lol
Is there a support group set up for this type of incidences.
selfishness comes to mind.don't critisize the husband,afterall.he's complying with her behavior only to appease and prolong the bitter end of this sad romance.
Must point out the blinding irony that there's an ad for IMVU raging right below the documentary viewing screen....
While I can understand the need to escape the reality of life at times of stress, to let it ruin your marriage and put such a wonderful family under such stress is deplorable! This woman is extreme and so so selfish to leave such a loving accepting husband behind while she flits off after an itch that she wanted scratched then ultimately come crawling back when it didn't work. What a mole to expect that sweet guy to sit there and wait for her! Totally totally heartless. Those poor kids, I don't see that this will change her at all. She does not and never did seem to feel any guilt over what she had done and the hurt she must have caused her kids and husband.
this makes me want to cry. second life almost ended my marriage 3 years ago. my husband started to go on this game due to suffering deppression. he turned to second life and wanted that instead of his wife and four kids. it very nearlly destroyed all of our lives. we got the depression treated and my hubby didnt go on second life again. but for about 3 months it was his escape. is it being unfaithful?? yes it most definately is.
this is not just a diversion but like poker an addiction. in some cases good but in this case she needs to reconnect to a real and present family.
Congratulations BBC! I have to say that this is THE FIRST serious treatment of the cyber love/sex phenomenon that I've seen! It's long overdue. You don't need Second Life to have a cyber affair. All you need is access to the internet, a partner and imagination. I was talking with a friend the other day (we both have struggled with the attractions of the cyber world)and we agreed that this phenomenon is much bigger than anyone wants to admit.
lol well here I am again, my lipgloss is smudged, my spandex has withered under the pressure of keeping me in a perfect hour-glass shape (!) - im absolutely worn out, I spent 2 maybe 3 hours in 2nd life, and (this is true) I just could NOT get my hair right - it wasnt much to ask was it? In UK the 'fringe' is at the front and we dont have 'bangs' subsequesntly I ended up like a blonde octopus with porcupine undertones...I could not face my virtual partner like that! so I came home (under cover of darkness) I may go back later when Ive get my hair put back right
What?! A girl can go on Second Life and still not get her hair right?! Where's the justice? Guess it'll be Dumpy Yoga Lady Avatar for me, after all. :-)
Hi again, Sadie. Another question about fashion in Second Life. Do avatars come in 34B? I want to look really good in clothes.
OK - well I dont know how I stumbled onto this documentary but Its left me feeling strange.
I have never, yet, been in a chat room, I only started using a computer (for entertainment) in June 2010 - when I had my own home internet connection for the 1st time.
I live in Wales - UK (am I disadvantaged??) - heck, I dont need you to answer that question, because if I WAS disadvantaged - or 'lacking' - Im CERTAINLEY NOT ANYMORE!! yes! oh YES!!! Im very excited right now - Im all lipgloss and spandex - and Im off to find this 2nd world place,
................(dont wait up!)
Second Life could provide some of what is missing in real life. Love and sex are 90% in our brain and Second Life is a stage where all of that could be played. Like anything else in life you could get carried away looking for what you really want, but at the end finding good in what we already have is the real joy in life. Looking for the perfect relationship or the soul mate in real or virtual life can never be accomplished, because you will always find something missing there.
Elliot is a wise man knows what he wants in life and go for it. Carolyn can try finding positive aspects of her marriage and focus on them rather than trying to find her diamond somewhere else.
I THINK POPTROPICA IS A GOOD PLACE TO EXPLORE AND IS GOOD FOR ALL AGES!!!!
Great documentary. Now if Carolyn could only RE-ACT in real life the way that made her so desirable as an Avatar towards her Real husband, that family might be able to put things back together.
Second Life could be an excellent marriage skills building tool if used properly.
Throw the bitch out, or atleast stop feeding that skank.
I can't believe she let some unrealistic thing ruin her family. She's gonna regret ever doing that. Her husband's such a kind man and she's so...selfish! She doesn't deserve the saint of a husband she has.
A not too smart woman, married to not a too smart man...
Well, what would you expect from this couple?
I hear that a company called "3Feel" or something like that is making USB sex devices which can be used in an XXX Rated MMO which is looking to be released in the U.S.
Whose got game?
Yeah Caroline is right don't put the "Forrest Gump" analogy in there because they might look stupid. The 18 hours a day spent in a cyber-fantasy affair is cool though. What a scrag!!
That's her logic, lol.
Wow... I can't get over how pathetic this is. Lee needs to grow a pair, I would've shown her the door long ago. Having a cyber relationship can never ever replace the real thing.
What a disgusting woman Caroline is... Elliott too.
Set down the mouse, put your hands in the air, and step very slowly away from the computer. Nobody wants to hurt you, you just need help........
How can you cheat on someone that quotes Forrest Gump?
life is unfair, virtual or real.
I have just watched this documentary, how sad for Caroline's family her husband Lee and her 4 kids, I can also see the attraction going into second life you have no worries and no responsabilities. You can be all the thing's you cant be in real life, I realy hope they work thier marrige out Caroline seems very depressed with her life and just got carried away with the game but her little children need her and I feel so sorry for Lee good lick to them both and I hope they get thier love and real life back
have you seen the new movies they have made on this idea? gamer and surrogate
Second Life can be so addictive! People who can't separate the reality from the fantasy get sucked in and it's so sad. It's fun for a lark but taking it as far as these people do is just ridiculous. No one is who they say they are there, obviously. You can't just trust that everyone is going to be honest.
This woman is selfish beyond belief. Her husband is a saint. I feel sorry for him, but at least the children have one functioning parent.
Her husband is the fantasy of other women.
To love so blindly deserves criticism?
I am not quite sure. Breaking up a relationship
takes just a minute. Maintaining it for the sake
of their kids..... A ridiculously tough challenge.
I hope this serves as a lesson to others caught up in similar stuff on Facebook/Myspace/Orkut/Second Life etc.
Its really strange to see Carolyn's husband being so blind..I mean just look at the guy.He sees what all his wife does right in front of him and his kids,and still just sulks in the corner.Now i know why she wants someone else.. He isnt man enough for anything.What a pathetic guy..
... what's with the Taxi Driver score at 17:45? Disturbing.
Utterly Bizzare! I sure hope the fat and forty semi-balding avatar is still available. Oh please, oh please! . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . NOT!!!
You all should get a life . . . . . a real one!
What's rediculous to me, is the husband does not consider the cyber affair cheating, but does if it becomes physical.
..our society is going get screwed up in the future if people get addicted to this.
I really feel sorry for the husband.. she doesn't deserve him.
I don't know who is more pathetic - Carolyn for escaping from her sad little life in a virtual world or Lee for staying with her...
Carolyn, hands down. How can one consider Lee pathetic for doing what he vowed to do when they got married? The outcome is clearly torturous, but the world could use more people who stick to their promises like Lee.