TUCSON, AZ (KOLD) – Dating online is nothing new, but what may surprise you is that hundreds of attached Tucsonans are going online to purposely have affairs. Also, single people are going online to specifically hook up with those who are married.
We set up a profile on the website www.ashleymadison.com, which has the tag line, "life is short, have an affair."
Even without a picture, several local men offered to meet, chat or hook up.
We sent a producer undercover to meet with a man who goes by the name "sensuousazguy". The married father of teenagers alluded to the idea of needing someone for sex, not a relationship.
"I'm looking for someone who is real stable, real passionate, real sensual, likes to really get in the moment, just dive in because I don't have that at home," he said.
Then, he explained why he chose this particular site.
"This one looked really realistic in terms of people really wanting to hook up," he said.
The website was created by Noel Biderman in 2002 as a place for attached people to either openly or privately have affairs.
"4.3 million members later and I can't tell you how many tens of millions of dollars later, but it worked," Biderman said.
And, it isn't just Tucson men logging on.
"40% of our audience is single women, who are more than happy to be with attached men," Biderman said.
The affairs are actually keeping couples together, Biderman said.
"We do save marriages, we are probably the biggest marriage preservation tool on the planet," Biderman said.
Licensed Professional Counselor, Carol Ross said the cheating and online chatting is a fantasy and only makes things worse.
"Initially, it feels like they're saving their marriage because it brings excitement to their sexual life, but it also reinforces not being mentally present with your partner in real life," Ross said.
People like another man we met with undercover, who online goes by "Bonehead64" excuse the behavior because he's in a sex-less marriage.
"For me, sex has been about probably twice in about 4 years," he said.
Although still, he'd hate for his wife and young kids to know. We asked him if his wife knew and he said, "No, not at all."
The internet progresses infidelity and even sex addiction, Ross said.
"Anything you can possibly fantasize about or imagine about is there online at your fingertips," Ross said.
She helps couples where someone has strayed by teaching them to connect emotionally and show affection besides sex.
"And then sex can become a way of enhancing that strengthened emotional intimacy," Ross said.
She said it won't actually work until both sides put everything into one relationship.
"They won't ever know until they stop having extramarital affairs and really put all their attention and energy into their committed relationship," Ross said.
As for the men, "Sensuousazguy" told our undercover producer he was going to pull his profile and try working things out with his wife. Although, at last check, he was still on the site but had revoked our access to his profile. "Bonehead64" is still on the site, but has not contacted us since our meeting.