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February 16, 2006

Sambora / Locklear 31

By Sean L. McCarthy
Wednesday, February 15, 2006 - Updated: 04:56 PM EST

The Internet smut trail that police followed in the Neil Entwistle case is just the latest example of online infidelity.
“It’s much more prevalent than it was even a year or two ago,” said Cheryl Hepfer, president of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers.

Investigators say Entwistle, who is suspected of killing his wife and baby daughter in their Hopkinton home last month, was leading a secret life online, visiting Web sites for escort services and swingers.
Celebrity magazines have recently reported that e-mail evidence of affairs caused the breakups of Heather Locklear and Richie Sambora and of Denise Richards and Charlie Sheen.
Police, private eyes and suspicious spouses alike now know that damning evidence — of love affairs, secret financial assets or debts — may be lurking on the household hard drive.
Arlington psychotherapist Jan Bergstrom wouldn’t blame you for wondering whether you should check your own computer for signs that your spouse has strayed.
“It’s an epidemic,” Bergstrom said. “I can’t tell you how many couples I see this with, because the Internet is so easy to get to, and the sites are so easy to become a part of.”
Bergstrom co-founded the Relational Recovery Institute with Newton psychotherapist and author Terry Neal. They coordinate workshops for both couples and therapists, in addition to treating couples privately.
Even an online affair can ruin a marriage, Bergstrom said, because the spouse ignores the actual relationship in favor of the virtual one.
Once you find your S.O. has strayed, what should you do?
“My advice when they find out is, make sure you rock the boat and get some really good help,” Bergstrom said. “If you turn the other cheek, it’s only going to get worse.”
Larry James, an Arizona relationship coach and former radio producer for Dr. John Gray, isn’t keen on snooping.
“This is such a touchy subject,” James said. “You shouldn’t have been peeking. If you are peeking, there’s two things going on: Your self-image, or, they’ve given you a clue.”

He agreed that confronting the cheater is paramount, “but you have to be prepared that your spouse is going to lie.”
That’s because owning up to an affair might end the marriage.
Web helps monitor cheating hearts
Plenty of Web sites provide advice or warnings for people who suspect their spouses or significant others are cheating on them.
At couplescompany.com, relationship coach Larry James offers 29 “red flags” to look for in your partner’s behavior, from avoiding sex to repeatedly staying up late to work online after you go to bed.
A suspicious spouse can review the computer’s memory cache and “cookies” to see the sites his or her partner has been visiting. Or they could buy Internet monitoring software (examples include Spector Pro and eBlaster) that logs keystrokes, grabs screen pages and reviews Internet browsing.
Checking for secret e-mail accounts and fake profiles on dating sites — even a Google search — might uncover something.
So could a spy camera aimed at the computer screen.
Of course, spying on your spouse carries risks: It might not reveal any wrongdoing, and you might get caught snooping.
And if your spouse is determined to get away with the affair, he has several options for covering his tracks: deleting the Internet browser’s history and cookies before logging off, installing anti-spyware software that counteracts your program or switching to a computer you cannot access.

Posted by riesambo at February 16, 2006 10:12 AM