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Internet Relationship

Question:

I have met someone online from a different country. We are planning on getting married. Family & friends don’t seem to believe that you can “fall in love” with someone & make this commitment without first “knowing them in person” as they word it. We see each other via cams and talk with one another via computers & telephone. Are their concerns truly founded or not?

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  • ‘Anne’ is the pseudonym for the individual who writes this relationship advice column.
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Answer:

Your family and friends’ concerns are founded. There is a difference between a long-distance relationship and one where the partners are living together or nearby day to day. It is helpful that you are in constant contact via computers and telephone, but it is not the same thing as being together. You can’t touch one another when you are living apart, nor can you see how stress affects them in their bodies. It is quite possible to fall in love over the long distance, but this state of being in love is not stable. When you fall in love long distance, you are falling in love with who you think the other person is. The other person is on good behavior. It is not until you live with someone physically, and have to be in the presence of each other’s underwear and annoying habits, that you can begin to see what the other person is really like. You and your partner will face the additional problems associated with different countries and different cultures. I’d say, go forward with your plans if that is what you want to do, but don’t fool yourself into thinking you know this other person enough to be absolutely sure you’ll be marrying who you are bargaining for.

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Comments
  • Anonymous-1

    Internet relationships are a very new phenomenon, and in my opinion it can be very difficult to accurately compare it to a physical relationship. It's definately not the same, but it is important not to underate the emotional closeness that can develop even without physically touching.

    Internet relationships often sustitute other activities in an attempt to match the closeness acheived in a physical relationship. For example, a couple may engage in a variety of activities, as a couple or with a group, such as playing video games together, webcamming, chatting, story telling, cybersex and more... The idea is that different activites are able to showcase different aspects of a person, such as their creavitiy, confidence, and level of affection. As two people can interact with eachother in enough different virtual environments they can come to know eachother very well, and thus fall in love with eachother. It's not the same as a physical relationship, but as I stated earlier, be careful not to misunderstand what you have never experienced.

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