Digital Boyfriends Vs. Real Life Boyfriends

Saturday Mar 22, 2014 - BY Stacey

Are you my boyfriend? (Photo via Wiki Commons)

Japan, the country that brought you Tamagotchi, a small handheld digital pet that was popular in the 90s, now brings you an app that can masquerade as your boyfriend.

 

It functions as a role playing game with characters based on Japanese manga comics.The player is the “heroine” of the story and selects a boyfriend from among several eligible beaus and then develops a relationship with him based on the choices they make throughout the narrative.

 

According to Reuters, the game has taken off among single women in their 30s. ”In the game, you’re the lone woman, and the attention of all the guys is on you,” said “han-kura,” a 37-year-old office worker who uses that alias on a blog dedicated to these games.

 

It seems like the “perfect” solution for women who are so consumed with work and climbing the corporate ladder that they don’t have time to date and develop relationships with flesh-and-blood humans.

 

I can sort of empathize. While it’s been years since I’ve dated, I remember it quite well. It is all very time consuming–from going out to meet a guy, to setting up dates (or in today’s dating world–meeting online), to finding someone that you actually want to spend time with. And then things get even more consuming once the relationship deepens and becomes a long-term commitment.

 

I understand how someone women want to opt out and enter a fantasy world where all of this is simplified and streamlined, where effort expended is effort rewarded. But is this sort of thing emotionally healthy?

 

Ultimately, I would say no. Fantasy worlds are fun and games such as the one popular in Japan have their uses. But if these digital relationships flourish at the expense of your real life ones. Human relationships can be messy and time consuming to be sure, but they are ultimately worthwhile.

 

And even if you find yourself with a boyfriend, it doesn’t mean you have to give up your digital dalliances–you can include him in the fun!

 

 

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