As AI continues to seamlessly integrate into daily life, the emergence of AI-driven virtual girlfriends presents a new challenge in the realm of social interaction and psychological health. One professor is speaking out against the rising popularity of virtual girlfriends, saying these fake relationships are “very dangerous because it further isolates [young men] from real human connections.”
The Sun reports that the rise of AI girlfriends is reshaping the landscape of personal relationships and mental health, with increasingly sophisticated AI technologies blurring the lines between reality and virtual relationships. These AI personalities, which are slowly becoming virtually indistinguishable from humans, are tailored to provide companionship, emotional support, and in some cases, even simulate physical presence.
Professor Liberty Vittert, a data science expert at Washington University, recently shed some light on this growing issue. “The AI girlfriend is never tired, grumpy, or has a bad day; she just gives the users what they need to hear unconditionally,” she explained. This creates a perfect but artificial relationship for lonely single men, which Vittert finds concerning. “It’s very dangerous because it further isolates them from real human connections,” she added.
The AI girlfriends, designed to offer ideal conversations and personalized interactions, are getting better at mimicking real human behavior. Vittert highlighted the increasing realism of these virtual companions, stating: “AI girlfriends are becoming more like physical beings — they are almost indiscernible from a real human.” According to her, these AI entities are “shockingly good when it comes to replicating human interactions.”
This increasing reliance on AI for companionship raises significant psychological and societal concerns. Users can become so attached to their virtual partners that transitioning back to real-world relationships becomes challenging. This detachment from reality could also have significant societal impacts, especially in countries like the U.S. and Japan, where the birth rate is declining sharply due to a lack of human relationships.
The ease and comfort of these virtual relationships may also lead to a decrease in real-life social interactions and skills. Men, even those with real partners, are increasingly turning to relationships with AI girlfriends. Vittert warned, “Not a lot of men are going to end up staying with their partners who have this wonderful relationship with their AI girlfriends.”
Looking ahead, the prospect of physical AI robots capable of satisfying humans emotionally and sexually is becoming a real possibility. Vittert predicts that within less than 10 years, physical AI-powered girlfriends will become a common sight.