The Business of Electronic Love - Who Needs a Girlfriend?

Love: the eternally abstract emotion that has inspired the most profound sonnets, literature and artwork. When people are in love, they become bubbling, rosy glass-wearing optimists and when love is lost, it creates suicidal emo nihilists. Love intrinsically sucks. Finding love is an even further convoluted process, involving awkwardly alcohol-fueled interactions, multiple rejections or dejections and lines such as “Are you an astronaut? Because that butt is out of this world”. If you use lines like that, please just step to this side of me and stand up against this wall. Oh, here put this blindfold on and don’t mind the guys with the guns. They’re just here to learn how to pick up hawties from a master such as yourself, just keep saying your best pickup lines. Now that that’s taken care of, is there not an easier and less painful way that will also inadvertently quell such creepy pickup lines?

Physical contact is overrated

I’m sure you’ve read, heard and assimilated via osmosis that relationships are built on communication. Woefully though, your message inbox is a barren landscape of advertising SMSs and messages from your mom checking to make sure you haven’t completely given up. Worry not though, for only about $3 a day you can have someone to chat to, message and even talk to on the phone. Without the hassle of physical contact either! There is a service on China’s Taobao (essentially the Chinese Amazon) that will wake you up with a girlfriend/boyfriend type sweet talk, text you sweet nothings and even give you goodnight wishes. It happens over the phone virtually, without the need to suppress your agoraphobia to meet that special someone. The most discerning aspect of this isn’t the virtual part, but the option for an “understanding uncle”. Was someone not hugged enough as a child? Or hugged too much? OK, I know that joke took it too far, but for comedy’s sake, please don’t put a hit out on me.

Sex for money’s not cool, but it is for companionship. Is it really, though?

Blah blah blah oldest profession, legal in Amsterdam, unethical, dangerous, and such. I think we’ve all have heard enough about the societal, emotional and legal ills of prostitution, I really don’t need to reiterate. No, creepy guy with a greasy comb-over in the corner, I really don’t need to reiterate, and please take your hands out of your pockets. There is a website called MyGirlFund that specializes in offering a virtual girlfriend experience via webcam. No, creepy guy with a greasy comb-over in the corner, they do not wear sexy horse masks. Jeez, who let this guy in?! Anyhow, these women interact with their clients via webcam, having conversations that last for hours, offering nothing more than PG-rated companionship. One of the women that work there claims that there is real communication going on and she genuinely cares for the people she interacts with.

Invisible Girlfriend/Boyfriend

This is the real McCoy, if the real McCoy was fake. It gives you the option to choose the name, age, personality type and photo of your S.O.B.N.R.I.J.C. (significant other but not really, it’s just code). For naysayers’ sake, it will even create a cute backstory of how you met. You get all that for just $24.99 a month. Your new boyfriend/girlfriend will send you 100 texts, 10 voicemails and a handwritten postcard. Everything is created by a human and not automated, so you can look forward to some genuine, heartfelt interaction that’s ultimately fake.

Virtual dating for realsies, Bae!

Because you have been living in your mom’s basement for the better part of the decade, let me clarify something. Firstly, ‘Bae’, although regrettable, is the newest term of endearment that young whippersnappers are calling their significant others. Secondly, you actually use the Internet for more than just scathing mother-centric insults. There are websites that will get you in touch with real, honest, good people that want to date. Before you hyperventilate, let me tell you that the initial contact will be via electronic means giving you the necessary leeway to emotionally prepare to talk to someone without your headset microphone. From casual to real terrifyingly-involving-actual-human-contact long-term relationships can be found on websites such as, Tinder and OKCupid. Just a tip, make sure you lose the Dorito dust and Red Bull-infused sweatpants for something less Dorito-dusty.

Have you found true love online? Let us know about your experiences in the comment section below.