Fortunately, by taking steps to keep your personal information private, being cautious when it comes to interacting with people you meet online, and ending communication with people who threaten you, you’ll be better able to safeguard yourself from predators.I was a latecomer to counselling, having previously considered therapy a largely American pursuit. By the time I reached that landmark age, without children and in a marriage that was beginning to lose its fairytale glow, my daily life was beginning to feel not unlike a soap opera.I am bound to say, though, that I wasn't solely culpable. I ended up marrying one of these complicated boyfriends.
And I did, pretty much, and I was perfectly fine - until suddenly I wasn't.
There were redundancy problems at work; my marriage was showing strains; and there was something large and unnameable missing from my life.
We would meet in hotels, have sex – mindblowing sex - and then the realisation that what I was doing was irrevocably wrong would set in.
Taking my online affair offline was my big mistake, a transgression too far.
I began writing everything down, to help make sense of it, first for myself, then for others.
It's taken me a good while to fully come to terms with what I've done, to understand how easily I fell into the previously unknown world that I would regrettably come to prefer to the real one.
I failed – the guilt was profound – and so began the painful but necessary process of erasing one and focusing solely on the other, the one that had come first.
Mercifully, the kind and complicated man I was married to focused too.
After a couple of months I had to end it – and it was after I had made this decision that my husband found out.
He discovered messages on my phone and so I sat him down and poured the whole sorry tale out to him, feeling I was stamping on his heart with every word. I spent a lonely Christmas at my mother's house with nothing to do but wonder how I had got myself into this situation. I started therapy, and learned just how dysfunctional my life had been, and so little wonder I kept making new problems for myself.
And it was harmless, until I fell in too deep and wanted more than his messages.