I am sure I speak for many about the sadness of a new total lockdown. Many people are going to suffer from loneliness,especially the older generation who may not be as accomplished with using technology. I will no longer be able to physically see family or friends, activity groups are now closed but I do have the skills to keep in touch with everyone. I am also fortunate to be in good health and can get out daily for a walk to maintain my mental health. How many would want to admit how loneliness and 4 walls are so difficult, especially without a fixed end in sight? Most people don’t want to moan or complain as the very important reasons about why we must endure this are very evident.
There are well publicised helplines you can contact ( the Samaritans e.t.c) but sometimes it is just regular contact that we crave without feeling that we are ‘bothering’ others.
I came across a new concept the other day. Being able to find and pay for a virtual friend!! Who would have ever thought that such a thing would ever exist?
These are my initial thoughts on this:
- able to select a like-minded person
- choice of costs
- consistent company at a time to suit you
- ability to ‘off load’ without worrying your actual friends and family
- ability to sign up and offer your services and maybe earn some money
- It could be great for language learners to practise conversational language skills or to find someone to help you learn a new skill
- security; who are you offloading all your secrets to?
- genuine interest; is the virtual friend really interested in your wellbeing as this is a financial transaction?
- is it ethical? How can friendship be bought and sold as a commodity?
- Vulnerability- those who are vulnerable may divulge financial information and therefore be at risk of fraud e.t.c
- Can the paid for friend deliver on their advertised promises?
- Offering friendship services to people who may have mental health issues could lead to them not getting the correct help and getting poor advice from someone not qualified to advise or discuss their issues.
How good is the site at vetting virtual friends and ensuring the safety of both parties? How are comments handled? What are the reviews like for these sites? Do they have the volume of reviews to give you confidence? After all, the people who are offering friendship for cash may be solely motivated by generating an income. A free alternative is to sign up ( UK) for your local volunteering service.
Anyway, if you want to find out more this is a site that offers virtual friendships, seems to be the place to go.