Anthony Weiner, Sexting, and CyberCheating

Weinergate.   This term was coined in 2011 after Anthony Weiner, a married, Democratic US Congressman, used social media to send women sexual explicit pictures and messages.  The media frenzy started after Weiner did a series of interviews where he denied sending those photos and suggested that his accounts had been hacked.  In June of 2011, Weiner finally held a press conference, where he apologized and admitted to having both sexual conversations and sending the inappropriate sexual photos of himself.  He stated he never met the women or had a physical relationship with any of them.  On June 20, 2011, Weiner resigned and then said he was working to fix his marriage to his wife, Huma Abedin, who he had married only 11 months earlier and who was a long-time aid to Hilary Clinton.  I wouldn’t have wanted to be him.

Now Weiner is back.  He’s running for the Mayor of New York.  And he is still talking dirty to women other than his wife.

In June 2011, my article on sexting and infidelity in cyberspace, was picked up by the media.  For a University professor, whose research usually doesn’t get noticed at all, it was quite exciting to be interviewed by the LA Times, USA today, New York Times and many others.  I was asked frequently during those interviews to discuss Anthony Weiner.   They wanted to know if I thought he actually met the women in person.  While I figured Mr. Weiner had enough trouble without me helping the matter, off the record I told them I believed he had met women in person.

Why would I think that?  I began conducting research about online sex in 1992 when I was working on both my masters and Ph.D.  at UCSB.  In fact, I began conducting research when individuals had to use dial-up in order to gain access to various BB’s (bulletin board)!!  In my article about “sex over the internet,”  I found that over 57% of both men and women in my sample stated they had met someone face-to-face after meeting them online.   Almost 20 years later, my more current research showed that 66% of all respondents had met someone in person after meeting them online.

Getting to know someone on social media sites, gives individuals different options that they might not otherwise have.  Because their sexual interest in one another is good online, they want to take it farther. So they meet. Why would Anthony Weiner be any different?  He has lied, cheated, and humiliated his wife.  Why would he do anything different to New Yorkers if given the chance.

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Learning How to Date Online

Hi everyone, I have been gone for awhile.  So much has happened.  My husband died 4/3/12.  We were separated, but we spoke every day.  There are no guidelines for the death of a spouse.  Then I got sick and decided to retire from my position at UNK.  I moved back to Denver to be close to my mom and my grandbabies, Emma and Evan, in September 2012.  That’s a lot of changes in a very short time.Emma and Evan

While I have taken time off to heal, I’m ready to get back to my research and blogging on dating online and cybersex.  It took awhile for me to start dating, but I’m getting into it.  And since I know about online dating, I’m going to share some things I have learned with you.

Once question I am always asked is “how do I know if the person I am meeting online is telling the truth?”  Well, my answer is, how do we know if our potential date, whether we meet them face to face or online, is ever telling the truth?  You have to be very careful.

If you go back to my research on sexting and infidelity in cyberspace, we know that many people are looking for someone else online.  According to my sample of 8,000 people who responded to my survey on the Ashley Madison website, they are all looking for someone outside of their primary relationship. So with that in mind, you have to be careful.  Some other widows told me about a website called militarycupid.com.  I checked it out for a very short time and found it was full of scammers.  The men were from another country, rather than where they said they were from.  It’s easy to tell that they are not from the US, if you read their writing.  They are typically terrible at grammar. If they say they are from State College, PA, but I ask them questions about the issues at that University, they tend to not know the answers.  That is a hint.   And they want money. Never give money.  EVER!! So be careful.

The next thing I suggest, if you are interested in dating online, is to decide what is important to you.  Make a list.  For instance, at the top of my list is a non-smoker.  I don’t smoke and can’t stand the smell, so I’m not going out with someone who does or “is trying to quit”.

Do you want kids?  Are you willing to date someone who is still raising kids?  Not me.  I’m done.  I’m also surprised at the number of men in their 50’s who are raising kids and want someone to help with that.   Decide ahead of time what you are willing to put up with. Remember, if you take on someone else’s kids, you need to also be willing to deal with an ex, which isn’t always fun.

There are lots of singles out there looking for a “generous” partner.  That means they are broke and need someone to take care of them.  I can’t see that ending well.  I clearly state that I don’t need someone to buy my dinner, but I don’t want to have to buy someone else’s.  I am retired now and want to travel and do the things that I now have time to do.  I want someone I date to not only, want to do those things, but able to financially do those things.

If I think I might be interested in someone who has contacted me, I want to talk by phone pretty early.  If they aren’t willing to talk, or only talk at certain times, I know they are attached to someone else and I’m done.  Sometimes I talk to them and find out they have a laundry list of medical problems.  Call me shallow, but I’m not willing someone’s caregiver right off the bat.  If I do connect with a phone call, then I’m willing to meet in a public place.  Usually I can weed them out then. I was asked to go to dinner with one man, but wanted to meet him at the mall first.  After listening to him tell me he hasn’t paid taxes for years and the mother of his children, who he was still living with, wasn’t going to get anything from him, I was out of there.  No dinner.  Nothing!

One thing you must be prepared for is many are just interested in sex.  That’s fine if that’s what you are interested in.  But if you want something more, be prepared and know how you are going to handle the sex question.  I went to lunch with a man one day.  I told him I wasn’t jumping into bed with him.  He said he didn’t want to work that hard to get laid.  Nice,huh?  I just didn’t think the Chinese lunch special was a good trade for my body.

The bottom line is that you might have to kiss a lot of frogs to fid your prince/princess.

Have you had experiences you want to share?  Do you have questions?  Don’t hesitate to ask.  Email Diane Kholos Wysocki.

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Scammers on Dating Websites

I think I figured it out. Finally.  I knew something was weird.  I kept getting really nice emails and chat messages in dating websites from very good-looking men. In fact, they were almost too good-looking.  Some of them even said they were in the military and said things like “has it been your dream of finding a man in uniform to spend the rest of your life with?”  Well actually, that wasn’t such a cool thing for me since my dad was a career Air Force man and I grew up around military bases. It’s what I was used to.  So dreaming about it? No.  Dating a man in uniform?  Fine.  The weird thing is their profile says they are in the states and then they say they are in Afghanistan or Iraq when chatting with talking to me.  The first time this happened to me I didn’t realize what was going on.  The guy was making plans really quickly and wanted to come see me, which I thought was odd.  He wanted to get to know me. It just so happened, it was during the summer and I had my tornado warning going off. I said I would have to go to the basement and his answer was “how far do you have to go to get there?”  Ok, I knew something was fishy then since he didn’t know what a basement was or realize it was part of my house.  So I started asking more questions.  By this time he had already asked me early into the conversation to go from the main website he found me on to yahoo instant messenger.  I didn’t realize then, but asking me to go to yahoo IM should have been my first clue to get rid of him. Anyone who asks that is a scam artist!!!!  So then I began to ask this person, who wanted to spend the rest of his life with me, other questions and he couldn’t answer them about military life. They were simple questions. At this point he got mad at me for not trusting him. Since that time I have met lots of “men” (one never knows if they are male) who want me to go to yahoo IM and that is my clue to hit disconnect and report them as scammers.  Last night I finally found out why they want unsuspecting “dates” to do this. Yahoo IM provides them a way to get into our computers and copy anything they want. Our passwords, anything.  DO NOT DO IT.  In fact, I just took yahoo IM off my computer this morning to prevent anyone from getting into my computer.  So here is what I do when I start chatting with someone.  As I said, if they even mention moving to yahoo IM, I report them. Then early on I ask them to call my cell.  Only an unmarried man who lives in the states will actually make this call.  I don’t even bother chatting with someone who I have no interest in. So if they smoke, I don’t even chat with them.   If they want babies, no way!   Beyond that, I want to make sure they are real. I have never had trouble  with this method.  If they are in another  country they will not call.  If they are  married they will not call.  So then I  know two things are OK and I can go from there.   After talking to them I check them out to see if they have lied about their age and  other things. It is amazing what you can find out on the Internet.  There is lots of information online about the romance scams.

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Filed under Cybersex, dating scams, Online Dating, romance scams, sexting, Yahoo IM

The Joys of Online Dating

I am new to online dating. Actually, I suggested that my host daughter put an ad on Match.Com and in preparation for her ad I thought I would do some research.  Next thing I knew I was writing my own profile.  Of course it was to help her.  But since I am a researcher, I looked carefully at what middle-aged men were asking for while I was on the site.  It seems difficult for me to not make dating even a research project.  I found that there are a few categories of men.  First off, and there are the lonely men. These men have been dumped by their wives and they don’t know what to do with themselves.  They say they wander aimlessly around their house and want a woman to cook and clean for them.  For some reason, my first thought would be, “why don’t they hire a maid?” rather than make another woman miserable, but maybe I am missing something.  Maybe someone wants to fill the previous wife’s shoes. Just not me.  I am located in the middle of Nebraska. So the second group loves football.  Every man in who had a profile up in this are mentioned how much they love sports.  By the way they write about it they must spend their entire weekends either at the football stadium or glued to the TV set.  For a woman like me, who doesn’t like football, who was really happy when her sons quit playing in high school so I didn’t have to go to any more games, and who would rather be shopping, what am I to do with all these men to pick from who me to love football with them?  I will tell you in my next blog.

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Sexting 101: My First Blog

While I have been researching sex on the internet and sexting before the term became popular, this will be my very first blog on the subject. Actually it is my very first blog at all. The word sexting is when people send pictures of themselves and their body parts via the computer and/or their cell phone or they text the sexual words to another person telling that person what they want to do to them or have done to themselves of a sexual nature. It is phone sex gone high tech. The difference is that once a person hits send, it is sent is written in stone for the person who receives it to do whatever they want with the information. They can either keep it safe; and use it for their own pleasure and for only them to enjoy or they can share it with friends, the media and even the world. We know that this is what gets people in trouble. After an article of mine on sexting and infidelity in cyberspace hit the media this summer, journalists coined the term Weinergate, to refer to Rep. Anthony Weiner whose private parts were found to have been floating around on Facebook and had been inappropriately sent to other women while married. Since this story broke, Weiner has lost his job, almost lost his marriage, and most certainly his reputation. Did he leave the internet and actually meet those women? He and those women are the only ones who really know that for sure. My research has found that if individuals find someone they like online they typically are going to meet them face-to-face. Then there are those who keep getting caught because they are sending minors pictures of themselves and their naked private parts. Just this week, a California assistant football coach who last summer sent a young girl text messages with nude photographs and a video of himself masturbating was sentenced to prison, while a 20 year old Houston man was caught sending his favorite pictures of his private parts to a young girl he met in church of all places. We know that when politicians do this it can ruin their careers and it is stupid, and that adults who send pictures to children it is against the law. However, what about when children send pictures of themselves to other kids? Is that just a childhood prank? Is it kind of like when my generation mooned our friends by sticking our naked butts out of car windows? We didn’t think twice about it. Well, kids think it is similar, but the laws haven’t caught up. For instance, the problems happen when a 15 year old decides to send a picture of her 34 DDD breasts to her boyfriend on her cell phone. She thinks it is just going to him. However, he sends it to his friend, who keeps on sending it on. Before anyone knows it, the picture is all way through the junior high and the high school, she and her boyfriend have been suspended from school. She is horrified. Her parents are very upset. Worse than that they can be arrested and have to register as a sex offender. It is always best to think twice before hitting send.

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