About "Bioshock Infinite" and the real life

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I watched a video on Youtube about Elizabeth, a character in a game called “Bioshock Infinite”. People admitted there in the comments, that they fell in love with her. Then someone replied with a remark about those people needing real women in their life.

It hit me. It reminded me of how different good looking women in real life are. Yes, “Bioshock Infinite” is a shortcut. Buy the game and you will get an illusion of what can be gained in real life with a lot of brain ability, only. No, not looks. Brain ability. Ability to understand and control social situations when your brain and frustrating fears get the best of you. Ability to remember things under high social pressure.

To get a girlfriend like Elizabeth to desire you, you have to fight against all of what your mother told you to do. You have to face your fears(which happily come back again) and realize that your brain works really bad under social pressure.

Then you can get something like that with no computer involved, real life, real feelings, real satisfaction.

It reminded me of the sadness that built up inside of me realizing and experiencing the high standards good looking females have, which they also can afford to have, because they exist.

Which is the main reason for me to play computer games in the first place, to escape this cruel and daunting reality of not getting what you want while seeing others getting it.

I resent you stranger, for taking me back to the here and now. I resent you for destroying my little fantasy world that gave me a little bit of comfort. Next time I will play bioshock I will remember this and I will lose interest in the game.

Do you play games because you hate your real life or because it enriches your real life?

 
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Have you considered that women like Elizabeth don’t desire you because you treat women like objects to be “gained”? Elizabeth is incredibly intelligent and it’s pretty depressing that despite her being well read, brave, skilled in many areas and very, very strong, you are all still obsessed with how “good looking” she is. Perhaps it’s your attitude towards women and not their “standards” that is causing your “problem”?

“Not getting what you want,” “what can be gained…” women do not have to be “good looking” to find this attitude repulsive.

P.S. It’s remarkable that Elizabeth has been treated like an object and controlled for her entire life and you’ve seen the effect this has had on her, and experienced her joy at freedom, yet still wish to manipulate and “control” social situations and in order to “gain” women.

 
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Do you play games because you hate your real life or because it enriches your real life?

I play games because I have a sickly need for constant entertainment and it helps me forget about my nicotine addiction when I’m low on money.

OP, you should start working out. It boosts both your looks and self-confidence, two important factors in attracting the opposite sex.

 
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As a female, your original post makes me a bit ill. Not all attractive and smart women are the same. They won’t all react the same way to what you’re doing. Hell, not all women, period, will react the same way. There’s no set in stone option for how to get a girlfriend, let alone one that you find attractive and stimulating both mentally and physically. It isn’t that good looking females have high standards, they just have standards that aren’t you. I’ve known plenty of attractive girls that are chubby chasers, prefer dumb guys, etc. If you aren’t what they find attractive, but deal, some people aren’t what you find attractive. But you can’t change yourself or what they desire to make it fit. It’ll only exhaust you and eventually become such a lie that nobody will be happy and resentment will breed.

And playing video games to escape rejection from a female is a bit, low, I guess. In my experience, if you can’t like and love yourself, and be happy on your own, there is no possible way to be happy with another person. Nobody wants to be with someone who seems like a constant drain and is always down on themselves. Learn to be happy by yourself, and the rest won’t matter and then it’ll fall into place.

Now, that doesn’t take into account all the possible psychological issues, such as depression, etc, that may exist. BUT, it’s a generalized start.

I play games because they enrich my life. If I hated the life I’m living, then I go out and change things. I don’t sit there and do nothing if I am truly, truly unhappy because I know that complaining isn’t going to do anything except make me wallow in self-pity.

If you’re that unhappy in reality, then you need to change something in your life. Whether it’s just a change of scenery, or serious medical help. I can’t begin to tell you which is right, if anything, but obviously what you’re doing isn’t working right now, so you need to be the one to start to fix it. Nobody can do that for you.

 
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it’s easy to fall in love with fictional characters, because they’re made ambiguously so that you fill in the blanks to your liking. it’s also far easier to know and trust a fictional person and…well, because you’re not actually in the situation, you don’t get any of the dynamics how you respond to one another, or how she asks a favor and you have to say no because of another obligation but you don’t know how to say no, so you kinda do it wrong and she responds badly and you don’t know who to blame so you kinda feel like she may be a bitch and… well, you know. how reality works.

tip: don’t get involved too much with fictional characters. there’s a reason they’re fictional.

 
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Originally posted by ParaNoir:

Have you considered that women like Elizabeth don’t desire you because you treat women like objects to be “gained”? Elizabeth is incredibly intelligent and it’s pretty depressing that despite her being well read, brave, skilled in many areas and very, very strong, you are all still obsessed with how “good looking” she is. Perhaps it’s your attitude towards women and not their “standards” that is causing your “problem”?

“Not getting what you want,” “what can be gained…” women do not have to be “good looking” to find this attitude repulsive.

P.S. It’s remarkable that Elizabeth has been treated like an object and controlled for her entire life and you’ve seen the effect this has had on her, and experienced her joy at freedom, yet still wish to manipulate and “control” social situations and in order to “gain” women.

<3 I couldn’t have said it better.

This is one of the most important female characters in any piece of media I’ve experienced, because she gives little boys and little girls who play these games a totally different paradigm in regards to gender. God forbid I play a male character in a game with relationships with women that aren’t based on attraction, but genuine intimacy. Their ability to make her vulnerable without sexualizing her, (I’d argue there’s one moment that does sexualize her, but immediately accents it by painfully pulling a probe out of her back.) and then empower her through her decisions and the relationship she has with the protagonist is paramount. Please think deeply about the post you’ve made here, OP. You’re on the brink of something that will enrich any relationship you ever have with anyone, much less the people you’ll be deeply, universally intimate with.

 
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Ehh, if you can fall in love with a 3D model, then you just have a problem.

And/or socially retarded.

 
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Originally posted by PatriotSaint:

Ehh, if you can fall in love with a bunch of meat, then you just have a problem.

And/or socially retarded.

fix’d, for no reason.

 
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Originally posted by PatriotSaint:

Ehh, if you can fall in love with a 3D model, then you just have a problem.

And/or socially retarded.

It’s not really all that different from falling in love with a character from a film or a play. In fact, it’s probably more normal than that since you actually have some interaction with a video game character and they have a sort of personality that is designed to appeal to people.
But, of course there’s a difference between having a crush on a character and actually falling in love with it. The latter definitely seems pretty damn strange.

EDIT: I think I need to clarify this a bit. I am not talking about the: “Oh, I love that character. She symbolises what I stand for in life perfectly,” or the: “I looooove postmodern gothic novels,” love, but instead one where the person is treating that character as if it was a person he or she could have a relationship with in real life.

 
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Originally posted by EPR89:
Originally posted by PatriotSaint:

Ehh, if you can fall in love with a 3D model, then you just have a problem.

And/or socially retarded.

But, of course there’s a difference between having a crush on a character and actually falling in love with it. The latter definitely seems pretty damn strange.

That is the part I am having trouble with. Pretty sure that the people falling in love with this character either have some major social or mental problems or have not idea what love really is.

 
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Originally posted by dd790:

That is the part I am having trouble with. Pretty sure that the people falling in love with this character either have some major social or mental problems or have not idea what love really is.

To be fair, the OP does have one of these. Their attitude to women in general is absolutely disgusting, as Paranoir and Natamora have already said. I have nothing to add to the points they have raised in how JensRasch and his ilk are valuing appearance over capability as the defining attribute they see in women.

Yet there is something more to it than that. Failing to woo any of our gender over to his side (for reasons entirely unsurprising to most, given his approach to the issue, he has retreated into a situation he feels he can control, and has clearly developed an obsession with the videogame character.

I can understand that to a point. When I first met the man I now live with, he was as a 3D model with one heck of great personality behind it. There were many things I fantasized about doing to his avatar, most of which have now been performed in RL to varying degrees of effectiveness (we will not be discussing any of the epic failures therein). So the base attraction makes sense. I can understand where he is coming from, in falling in love with someone despite, not because of their appearance. You do look past the body to the person within it, and in that way a 3D avatar is no different to a physical body.

However, a videogame character at this point in time, has not a snowball’s chance in hades of being able to match a human mind for sheer depth and breadth of character. Nor is there any chance of getting physical with them in at least the next decade. Probably never for current renditions – they were never built with haptics and NUI in mind.

So, it is a sad, lonely longing, but one born I suspect, out of that utter inability to cope with relationships out there in the physical world, where the ‘objects of desire’ are people with unique, deep and complex personalities and abilities. The videogame character is much shallower in comparison, and very unlikely to get fed up and leave you. If they do, there is always the game’s reset option, of course. So its a much safer form of relationship with no real risks, and no real rewards either.

Its also a transitory thing. As AI algorithms improve, and home computing power climbs, we are going to reach a point in the not too distant future where neural nets and self-learning adaptive AGI is used for the mind of the primary character or characters in video gaming, and simulations. At that point, the characters who represent the ‘objects of desire’ are themselves going to become much, much more complex and themselves reminiscent of actual people to an ever greater degree.

There is going to come a time, realistically well within Jens’ own lifetime, that such characters are beyond his ability to cope with as much as normal women are. They’ve become too intelligent, and too complex to be satisfied with a partner who completely disregards their mind and person in favor of something as superficial as looks. Even if you add parameters in to the base setup to force them to start off that way, a self-learning neural net is going to change over time, and there’s no way of stopping it from doing so – nor would you realistically wish to.

So Jen is going to find himself in the position of having to seek ‘love’ in the older videogames, rather than in anything new or modern, as their characters share too much in common with normal women – realistic, deep, capable minds who will catch on to what a player is really like as they continue to interact.

On the flip side, you could quite easily use such characters as a form of therapy to prepare someone like Jen for a real relationship – in the relative safety of a resetable simulation. Ultimately that is what must happen. Jen must learn to engage with real people, or wind up realistically alone for the rest of his life, having relationships only with characters who don’t understand what a relationship is, let alone how to have one.

However, this cannot be forced on Jen; it will be up to him to take the first step.

Just keep in mind Jen, as I have explained above, your remaining time to use videogames as surrogate women is quite limited. I wonder frankly, how many like you there really are out there, and how many would seek help if it was made available to them.

 
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Alright, I’ve been holding my peace, but time to weigh in.

One. Nothing wrong with falling in love with fiction. At it’s most obvious, it is love of the concept, love of the idea, it’s all someone’s heart and soul and there is nothing wrong with finding that evocative. Weeping at tragedy, swooning at bliss, that’s the general idea of fiction right? Further, I would saw few relationships are free from illusion. There’s plenty of fiction, plenty of abstract, plenty of idealism between two flesh and blood folks too.

Secondly, I find the general reception a little… over sensitive. Women are an attainment. There are those who desire a woman, whether it is for ‘love’, companionship, comfort, beauty what have you. It’s something you want, and either you get what you want, or you don’t. We’re not all going to settle down with billionaire, genius, sex kitten, poets. Everyone has to make their peace with that somewhere down the line. And part of that, a big part of that, is experience. When you connect with someone you begin to realize that a lot of your preconceptions, your expectations, are not as important as you think they are. Values shift.

Women in general are not a person. They are a thing, an idea, a desire. Relationships are hard, lots of people are bastards. Stressing about turning ‘women’ into ‘a woman’ seems pretty reasonable. Though, I would digress to denounce defeatism and resentment. Few get what they deserve, let alone what they want – I can’t disagree with anyone angry that a whole emotional spectrum feels unattainable to them.

I have a close friend, honestly not myself, heh. He is a saint and a scholar and has never had a superficial relationship let alone a deeper one. He is not shallow, mysoginist, or any particular character defect. Simply shy. It doesn’t mean that rectifying these things is unattainable, but, there is certainly an absence, a tragic absence. That’s legitimate, are we really vilifying longing, or absence of social graces, or the desire for beauty?

By his own admission he has problems with ‘fear’. Why are we flagellating him for it? He is aware enough to recognize it as problematic, and has taken some refuge in fantasy escapism. Fair enough by me. Short of keeping hope, keeping confidence, that self mastery is the road to attainment, I can think of little else to tell him. This castigation baffles me.

 
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Originally posted by JensRasch:

vikaTae, you proved right there that you were dismissed because of your repelling looks. This is exactly what you deserved.

Well that’s a lovely thing to say to someone.

 
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Not to mention I don’t understand how it marries up with what I said. What part of I now live with him is compatible with ‘I was dismissed because of my looks’?

Throughout the years, I have met a lot of people who happily use an avatar for interpersonal relationships. Having physically met a few of them over the course of those same years, I now have a better understanding of why. For some their physical disabilities are severe enough to limit their interaction otherwise, and the avatar gives them a level playing field. For others insecurity and inbuilt shyness means they find it easier to communicate avatar-to-avatar than they do in person. This could be issues with weight, age, or yes, even looks.

For others the issue is more complex. They may desire a lifestyle that is incompatible with modern society, and avatar-based interaction allows them to live it through a proxy, with other like-minds not physically co-located. Pretty much every niche lifestyle you have ever encountered, also expresses itself this way. It happens to also be a primary reason I chose to explore that medium. the other being of course, my field.

This is why I suspect I can see where you are coming from, to a degree. Such interaction offers a good degree of comfort. Either as a safety net between the physical self and others, or as a shield between current reality and a desired lifestyle. However, in my explorations, I have only come across those who sought interaction with other complex minds. People who could give as good as they got, and who led lives of their own outside of your control.

So it is difficult for me (not impossible, but difficult) to see any appeal in a videogame character who lacks that depth of mind. I certainly find it impossible to picture any kind of long-term relationship with them. Current-generation characters are scripted, and will eventually run out of dialogue to say or acts to perform. What do you do when they go through the loop for the umpteenth time?

Near-term future characters (approx 20-30 years away) are not going to work either. They will most likely be deep, multi-level minds, capable of their own thoughts and feelings. This sort of person is exactly what you were running away from in the first place, and I doubt that finding another just like them in a computer, is going to be something they would wish for, or would find any easier to handle. So, its back to the scripted characters again. It seems…lonely.

Originally posted by JensRasch:

I wrote “You have to face your fears”. If you’ve ever tried to have sex with a woman like Elizabeth(provided you are male) you know very well what I mean.

Whilst I have experienced the oddity of sex with a woman a couple of times, I cannot say it is an experience I would eagerly drop everything to repeat. I’m also not a male myself, so we may be hitting something of a translation barrier here.

However, when I meet someone interesting for the first time, I cannot honestly say my first thought is to jump in bed with them. They may be physically attractive, yes, but if they have a brain like a block of tofu, what would be the point? You’re not going to get anything interesting out of them. Conversely, the ones who are not really so physically attractive may well be the kinkiest bastards on the planet.

You have to take time, get to know a person, find out the depths of their character and how well your own measure up to theirs, before you can even think about going further with a relationship. It again sounds like you are looking for something shallow. That you frankly do not give a shit what mind they do or do not have, so long as the looks are appealing to you, and you can control them.

Which I guess is where we come full circle back to videogame characters. No brains whatsoever. Nothing but an empty husk of looks, and their very existence is at the mercy of your finger and the power button. Ultimate control indeed.

Just… Not going to be fulfilling in any meaningful sort of way.

 
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Originally posted by JensRasch:

vikaTae, you proved right there that you were dismissed because of your repelling looks. This is exactly what you deserved.

I have no idea how you are having so many problems finding an IRL Elizabeth if this is how you speak to women.

 
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I have no idea how you are having so many problems finding an IRL Elizabeth if this is how you speak to women.

This is not how you will have sex with vikaTae.
 
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This is not how you will have sex with vikaTae.

Your arguments are absolutely amazing man.

 
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I take back my insinuation that you are somehow on a path towards gender enlightenment, or having taken this thread seriously at all. Grow the fuck up and leave Serious Discussion.

 
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Why do I play games ?
Entertainment, I suppose.
Or a need to prove that I’m better than someone else, than everyone else, and fail miserably.

When it’s reainy outside, and I don’t want to see my friends, I’ll just start a game.

 
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Vika.

So it is difficult for me (not impossible, but difficult) to see any appeal in a videogame character who lacks that depth of mind. I certainly find it impossible to picture any kind of long-term relationship with them. Current-generation characters are scripted, and will eventually run out of dialogue to say or acts to perform. What do you do when they go through the loop for the umpteenth time?

I would suppose one swoons. Never had ‘the one who got away’? The relationship is a closed book, nothing has changed grown, or developed, but it remains as a memory. I would agree that a static relationship (for whatever reason) is anathema to the idea of progress and growth. But is it necessary? I don’t see it as such. I’d say a trace moment suffices. Cast of the eyes, brush of the hand; it can leave an impression, stir the soul.

I’d daresay we are crossing ‘love’ and ‘relationships’.

Near-term future characters (approx 20-30 years away) are not going to work either. They will most likely be deep, multi-level minds, capable of their own thoughts and feelings. This sort of person is exactly what you were running away from in the first place, and I doubt that finding another just like them in a computer, is going to be something they would wish for, or would find any easier to handle. So, its back to the scripted characters again. It seems…lonely.

Well none of these characters are birthed ex nihilo. They are still the product of human conception. You mentioned depth a few times and I still feel on account of that they are capable of the same depth as any other fellow. Breadth, breadth is the problem.

Although even a fully sapient AI character would operate under a different set of rules. Localization of consequences comes to mind namely. Rejection becomes resettable. Problems remain between you and the box. One isolates the relationship and thus gains greater control.

Which I guess is where we come full circle back to videogame characters. No brains whatsoever. Nothing but an empty husk of looks, and their very existence is at the mercy of your finger and the power button. Ultimate control indeed.

I can’t help but laugh. Come on now Vika, let’s not speak ill of the desire for Control. Some of us find that sort of idea rather appealing.

BSG,

I take back my insinuation that you are somehow on a path towards gender enlightenment, or having taken this thread seriously at all. Grow the fuck up and leave Serious Discussion.

Seconded? I wish I could see the content of his post. Although, I feel it has roused some interesting concepts, above and beyond the OP’s personal stake.

 
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This is going to get long, and I realise a lot of people don’t like to read long posts, so I’m going to attempt to catagorise it, in order to make it more approachable. Please think of it as a series of separate posts, all joined in a central theme. If you are going to quote any of it, please do not quote the whole thing, but stop at each section delinator. Otherwise you will just be spamming huge chunks of quote for nothing.

Thank you.

  

A Book Character as a serious relationship

Originally posted by Ungeziefer:

I would suppose one swoons. Never had ‘the one who got away’? The relationship is a closed book, nothing has changed grown, or developed, but it remains as a memory. I would agree that a static relationship (for whatever reason) is anathema to the idea of progress and growth. But is it necessary? I don’t see it as such. I’d say a trace moment suffices. Cast of the eyes, brush of the hand; it can leave an impression, stir the soul.

I disagree. You may fall in love with a character from the book, and would love to meet them as a person in real-life, with all the faults and foibles perfectly transferred from the book into real life. A living, breathing version of the book character to interact with and lead down new paths. This does not translate into having sex with the book itself, nor does it translate into introducing the book as your ‘significant other’, and calling the fantasy played out in your head ’a serious relationship.

It is not a relationship, it is just you.

Transfer that to the more interactive medium of the videogame, and you can extend the scripting of the character to say what you wish it to say in given circumstances, but it is all still you. To use the book analogy, you have taken a pen and written into the book new dialogue for your character to say. This does not make them more of a person. It is again just you. Only one mind involved.

 

Depth and Breadth of Character

Originally posted by Ungeziefer:


Near-term future characters (approx 20-30 years away) are not going to work either. They will most likely be deep, multi-level minds, capable of their own thoughts and feelings. This sort of person is exactly what you were running away from in the first place, and I doubt that finding another just like them in a computer, is going to be something they would wish for, or would find any easier to handle. So, its back to the scripted characters again. It seems…lonely.

Well none of these characters are birthed ex nihilo. They are still the product of human conception. You mentioned depth a few times and I still feel on account of that they are capable of the same depth as any other fellow. Breadth, breadth is the problem.

Although even a fully sapient AI character would operate under a different set of rules. Localization of consequences comes to mind namely. Rejection becomes resettable. Problems remain between you and the box. One isolates the relationship and thus gains greater control.

Greater control, not absolute control. The depth is definitely going to still be there. Bredth depends on the extent of the world they are born into. A greater depth of mind is going to demand a greater breadth of world for that mind to interact with, or the mind is going to develop disorders that will make the product ultimately unsellable. Its the same as sticking a human in a sensory depravation chamber for a few hours. No sensory stimulation makes the mind go nuts.

So the trend towards more open, expansive, complicated gaming worlds would obviously have to continue, which is generally in line with what the gamers wish anyhow. The more experiences that mind has access to even as background, the more complex they are going to be. It doesn’t matter that the memories are fake; they still feel real to that person.

But yes, if they make the ‘wrong’ decision’ the player can always reset their memories to an earlier state and try again. Problem is they don’t have full control. They cannot demand what the character thinks and feels. They still have to work at changing themselves to meet the character’s expectations rather than forcing the character to like them as they are.

In theory you could do that of course, manually inserting incompatible memories and desires into the AGI’s neural web. But you’re going to brreak their mind that way; send them into psychosis based on how associative memory works when the incompatble data is assimilated, and I doubt a psychoctic, unpredictable significant other was exactly what you were aiming for. So, back to the reset and start again.

Ultimately you do not have ultimate control, because they still have their own mind, their own free will, and you cannot force them to think as you wish them to think without destroying the very mind you fell in love with in the first place.

You have more control than normal, with the reset option, but still not full control. The relationship still depends on relations, and you’re giving your all as much as the other mind is. That’s where our thread OP falls apart, as he doesn’t want that. Just wants it all to fall in his lap perfectly with no effort involved – hence retreating from actual relationships into something shallower.

  

The Male Mind and Desire for Looks Every Time?

Originally posted by Ungeziefer:


Which I guess is where we come full circle back to videogame characters. No brains whatsoever. Nothing but an empty husk of looks, and their very existence is at the mercy of your finger and the power button. Ultimate control indeed.

I can’t help but laugh. Come on now Vika, let’s not speak ill of the desire for Control. Some of us find that sort of idea rather appealing.

I cannot imagine desiring a blow-up doll for a companion rather than a woman, because you value looks and don’t give a shit if she has a brain, Ung. That’s what you’re saying you desire, and hence the title of this segment. That you prefer an empty beautiful husk with no mind of her own to something challenging. It is your ideal relationship.

I submit to my man as his slave, because that’s what it had to be for us. Our respective roles within the gorean system and the pre-existing relationship dynamics between him and another left no real alternative. Leave the gorean system, and I leave him behind. Wasn’t palatable. Still, I have a great deal of trouble believing in your claim here that it was solely my looks and not my mind he desired. There are plenty of better looking fish in the sea, and my mind continually challenges him. Keeps him on edge.

He doesn’t have full control with me, because I’m strong minded. I know my own mind, and it is a powerful tool which creates much mischief and weird electronic gizmos with some regularity. If he had the option to erase my mind and replace it with an empty shell, I know him well enough to confidently say he wouldn’t do it. There’s no challenge there any more. No relationship dynamics. He just has an obedient love doll and nothing more. Everything that binds the love between us would be gone.

For some, I would dare say even most control freaks, the love, the bonding is as important an aspect as the control. There has to be something stimulating there; something challenging, something meaningful. Otherwise, what’s the point?

 
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In my experience women tend to not be big on boys who make physical threats over nothing, especially ones so spineless to do it through a computer, and block the person they message for fear of a reply…

 
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With every post he makes he is looking more and more like a frustrated teenager to me who uses the internet to vent off some steam. The same with his games.