“In the last three years, we’ve seen an astronomical increase in Internet-related affairs,” said Sharpe, with the Life Connection Counseling Center. “This whole affairs thing is just off the charts.”

Sharpe, a pastor who works primarily with Christian clients in his counseling center, said more than 50 percent of his practice is affair recovery, much of it Internet-related.

“Anything that’s good always has its dark side,” he said of the Internet.

“Twenty years ago, there was no way to find a high school sweetheart,” he said. And social boundaries restricted the face-to-face contact needed for an affair to develop.

The Internet has removed those boundaries, he said, “allowing a relationship to begin to flourish where it never got any traction before.”