Can a Saudi Have a Virtual Wife?

virtual bride

While many Saudis may not yet use email extensively they probably know how to use MSN messenger, google talk, yahoo talk or skype quite well.  They will have no problem chatting online or perhaps even having a video-chat.  In fact, due to the closed society and segregation in the Kingdom, social networking sites and the ability for real time chats are the mechanism many Saudis are now using to get to know one another.  These Saudis can be a newly engaged couple who wish to know one another better before their marriage or alternatively social networking on the internet is used same as in the West where guys and girls would go to popular clubs to meet up.

So what exactly is the impact of social networking?  Can regular chatting or video-chats between a man and woman on the internet lead to a virtual marriage?  Or what about “virtual infidelity?” If an unrelated Saudi guy and girl are interacting back and forth via the internet either by chatting or having video-chats would that action therefore put them in a state of khulwa?

Can a Saudi man (or any man) for example have a virtual wife?  I became curious and started doing some research on the topic of a virtual wife and not surprisingly found various articles on the subject.  Even the Wall Street Journal provided an article on a man who took a virtual wife and what impact that act had with his real live wife.  According to the article, “Family-law experts and marital counselors say they’re seeing a growing number of marriages dissolve over virtual infidelity. Cyber affairs don’t legally count as adultery unless they cross over into the real world, but they may be cited as grounds for divorce and could be a factor in determining alimony and child custody in some states, according to several legal experts…”

I’m curious to hear your views on the topic.


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