When two people meet in a chat room or strike up an email relationship, it's easy to begin idealizing each other and blur the line between fantasy and reality. An intense sense of intimacy is quickly fostered. Sharing personal details and desires is often easier over the Internet than it is face-to-face. The instant gratification of these technologies stimulates reward centers in the brain, and it's easy to find oneself craving the quick hit of an instant connection or lamenting its absence.â€¨
Even without the senses driving attraction, the mind goes into overdrive and imagines that this is the perfect person and the perfect relationship.â€¨
Soon, a person may feel like an online friend "knows" them better than a partner does. A person may feel freer to explore other parts of themselves, while real life (and a real relationship) feels stifling. This artificial sense of intimacy can begin to consume a person's thoughts, which becomes all the more exciting because it's a secret.