Credit By: Digital Native | Rex Woodbury – Substack
The emergence of virtual AI partners is more than just a wacky fad; it’s fueling a silent loneliness epidemic that affects a whole generation of young guys. There are no worries about the potentially severe ramifications of this seemingly innocuous occurrence for the future of America.
The Entire World of Virtual Girlfriends
Millions of people are using applications that generate virtual girlfriends. To replicate the “perfect” relationship, these AI friends converse, show affection, realize dreams, and learn about their users’ preferences through data analysis. Given that influencers are earning a significant following by creating AI bot versions of themselves, some virtual girlfriends are even modelled on real individuals.
Users can select these virtual companions’ physical characteristics and psychological features, making them very customized. At first glance, the AI creates a virtual connection that seems rewarding by learning from users’ emotions and customizing responses to give exactly what the user wants.
Statistics on Loneliness and Its Actual Effects
The alarming statistics of loneliness align with the growing popularity of virtual AI girlfriends. Compared to only 30% of women in the same age group, almost 60% of young males (ages 18 to 30) are unmarried. A fifth of men say they don’t have close friends, a four-fold rise in the past 30 years. During the pandemic, friends’ social involvement decreased by 20 hours per month, and this pattern is still present now.
These concerning numbers are having real-world repercussions. Young men’s preference for virtual ties over actual ones in marriages and other relationships eventually impacts the birth rate. Relationships, weddings, and births are declining in the US, with a significant reduction in the average number of children born to each woman.
This loneliness epidemic has severe economic ramifications. As fewer people get together, get married, and have children, the United States finds it harder to maintain its workforce and pay for necessary programs. A lower force in the future due to the declining birth rate could cause economic instability.
The economy needs help in sectors like healthcare. In 2021, the United States spent over $1.6 trillion on Medicare and Medicaid. By 2030, 50% more Americans are expected to be on Medicare. The workforce is expanding at a different pace, though.
There is additional pressure on the social security system. There were 42 employees for every recipient in 1940; today, that number is only 2.8 and is declining. A shrinking workforce’s economic effects could make it more challenging to pay financial obligations by creating financial obstacles.
Although the idea of virtual AI girlfriends can seem funny initially, it’s contributing to a more severe issue. It’s making it possible for a generation of childless and lonely men to stay alone, which might have disastrous long-term implications for the American economy. It is imperative to acknowledge and tackle the epidemic of loneliness, not only for the affected individuals but also for the long-term welfare of the country.
Follow ARP Media for more informative blogs.