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Inkfeather
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First of all, I need to say that many of the quotes I will use in this is rough translations from the danish language and may therefore sound cheesy and/or stupid to some.

On another note, I will relate this post to ponies, hence why I post in the Sugarcube Corner section, just be patient.

Now, to the actual post.

Today I read an article about RealDolls, an article I had to read in connection with a Danish test and pre-exam. This article, with the name "A Dollhouse", seemed stupid at first, because the topic in itself seemed boring. That was, until I actually started reading. This article interviews and communicates with the owner of these RealDolls, a type of dolls designed to be the size of humans, around the same weight and pretty much extremely lifelike.

The owners at first, are mostly male. Some might think why this is, or may have ideas what they use these dolls for but, whatever you're thinking right now. Stop. The owners of these dolls were mostly found in the wealthier parts of the suburbs. People who lived fairly normal lives, with normal jobs, friends and a night out in the weekend for sports games and such. The only abnormal thing about this life of theirs is the fact that they live with these dolls. One man, an author named Rob had his doll. He live with this doll the day to day and is still as happy with it as the day he bought it. His story is one where he tells that he wanted to reward himself with something nice after finishing his first novel.

It might seem weird and freaky to own these dolls but, he explained fairly well how he enjoys the company of this doll, named Lily, and how he actually rarely ever use for for anything but the company of it. Sitting in the couch and holding hands, maybe staring into her eyes during a dinner for one.

His reason for liking this Lily was this: "And I will say, that the biggest surprise have been, that RealDoll creates such a real and comfortable illusion about being with someone."

I find this to be beautiful. That this man is able to feel love towards his doll as if it were a person. I think it's nice to know that he's able to find happiness by spending time with this Lily.


Okay, and now to why this is relevant to ponies.

The aforementioned quote, try putting that in relation to ponies. Try seeing it for yourself as you imagine your favorite pony scene or just the image of a pony you like in particular. Doesn't it fit quite well?

These ponies, these lovely and beautiful equines creates an illusion for us, of a better place and of happiness in general. It helps us, some of us at least, to find a certain degree of peace in this rushed life of ours.

We enjoy this because the show makes it seem real. We enjoy it because it's easy to let imagination brew. Just as another of Rob's quotes: "Imagination is a powerful tool, and it has to be used." The rest of the quote contains thought and facts about how dolls were used for this for thousand of years.

Well, this quote, try putting it in relation to ponies again, look at the forum and the roleplay section. These equines again, create a fantastic opportunity to let our imaginations bloom. They create this happy world of joy and smiles that no darkness nor corruption can destroy.

This article made me think, are we really so different from other people by liking ponies? I think not, and yet we are. We have a freedom, and a medium to channel our fantasies and imagination through, these ponies, this Equestria helps us do exactly that, like these doll Lily helps Rob use his imagination.

"And when I tell Lily, that she's looking good today, I imagine what her figure would answer, and I smile at the thought of the connection we create as we play in reality."

This is another quote of his, and by far the most beautiful of them, in my opinion. Rob plays his life as we play our OC's in a roleplay. He uses his imagination to make his life better in company with his doll, Lily.

Just as the artists of this site do when they create new images of pony art, just as we do when we play our roleplays in the pony world. We are all artists, in our own way. By using our imagination and the medium that is ponies, we all create a perfect world. A wonderland one might say.

We create our wonderland, right here, right now, with the help of ponies. Just as these people live their own by the help of their dolls.

"They have found something that works for them, something, that is true to them, and they live it out - no matter what others think of them. They are people, who is fiercely loyal to the thought of living in their personal reality."

This could just as well be said about bronies, about us, about you and me.


- Inkfeather.

Edited by Inkfeather
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Wow. Thats quite the report you did there. Can't say I really fully understand your motives with this, but its cool. I guess most people would see "pony enthusiasts" as a little creepy wouldn't they? Fortunately, I don't don't think that pony OCs aren't exactly the kind of thing that makes people see blindly. Even if they did I'd still enjoy them. I am quite sympathetic for these people. Its really quite interesting.

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I guess I understand the motives you've put into this article and I have to agree with you to a certain extend.

Yes the community gives me some kind of company and yes I really enjoy indulging myself in RPs and playing my OC. If you have enough fantasy it kinda takes you to another place and makes a lot of fun :)

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The article is very well thought out and I can see some relations between our interests principles and theirs.

 

Here's my two cents on this however.

 

 

There's a word for what we all do. In fact, the word pretty much can apply to anything dealing with escaping your real life in favor of a fantasy world or by other means. It's called escapism. Escapism in today's world is used many different ways, as everyone goes through some form of it throughout their lives. Whether or not it is considered more of a mental issue as opposed to what's considered by society to be a, "Healthy Obsession" is completely subject-able to any persons opinion.

 

As I mentioned briefly before, the definition for the word escapism is to find a diversion by means of entertainment (In our case MLP) or a recreation (In Rob's case Lily) to get away from what we can perceive as being unpleasant. Depending on what you do as an escape from reality is completely up to the person. Escapism can be anything from liking a children's cartoon, to religion, and even drug abuse. Whether or not it is considered a healthy obsession however, as I said before, is completely up to the masses and your own personal opinion.

 

EDIT: I'd also like to add that there can be a fine line of what is actually a healthy obsession and what isn't. For example, drug abuse by health standards can be considered an unhealthy obsession as it damages your own health and well being, which can eventually lead to serious health conditions or even death. This is something that we would consider a unhealthy obsession.

 

Yes we are very much alike in the core foundations of why we love and do what we do. Yes we all share the same courage to love what we love no matter what others will think. Remember though that we're all subject to our own opinions and what one person might love that to them is the best thing in the world, may not necessarily be perceived as normal by others.

 

I can understand why people would want these dolls. I can completely understand why they would love them unconditionally as well. However, I myself could never get a doll like that and feel absolutely comfortable with the fact that there was a inanimate and very life like looking object just sitting in my house. To me, it doesn't seem very normal. But alas, that's my opinion. I'm not judging these people by what they love to do. I'll leave it to their sense of character to help me make that judgment.

 

This whole doll thing to me is a bit... Odd. Just as anyone finds me liking MLP odd. Again, it all comes down to opinion and whether or not we care.

 

As long as we don't care and continue to love what we love, then that's what makes you in the end.

 

 

I personally enjoyed this article. I've read this story before and expressed similar feelings as did many of my friends. I can definitely see the relation to our fundamentals for loving MLP to theirs for loving their dolls.

 

Still, dolls.

 

I've never liked dolls.

Edited by Matackable
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As long as we don't care and continue to love what we love, then that's what makes you in the end.

 

 

Alas, this is what I was trying to catch with this thread, nice to see that someone picked up my motive of this long post. And I'm glad to see that you agree with the core fundamentals being the same in regards of loving what we do unconditionally.

 

Us being bronies, would be considered just as weird by "normal" standards as these people in their relationship with dolls. Though, I say I'm happy to know that they can find something that can make their lives a better place, for us it's MLP, for them it's their Dolls.

 

Which is also why I do not judge by what they do but rather by WHY they do it. Them having these dolls, if only used for sexual satisfaction, would be like having a VERY expensive sextoy. But as the article says, this is actually far from the actual reality. These people love these dolls, by all their heart. And that kind of love, no matter to what, is the most beautiful thing in the world.

Edited by Inkfeather
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You are right, in some extreme cases, like people who own realdolls and more extreme bronies the psychological function is the same.

However this is not true to all in the same extend of conditions and most people have the tendency to distinguish between reality and fantasy, which means not all of us can, or even would like to experience happiness that in a sense is more fantasy than reality.

 

To most bronies the ponies in the show are just beloved characters, they are indeed fodder for imagination and bring happiness like many other things in life can bring happiness to an individual, this happiness can motivate some changes in behavior as well as just reduce stress, but the degree of self-delusion that is involved with these people who "experience" realdolls is more deep and likely rooted in psychological disorder.

 

I do not find it as beautiful as you do, but then again I think that a healthy individual should be able to socialize as well as cope on their own without a need for artificial crutches like dolls and self-delusion.

The capacity for love is basic cornerstone of a mammal as well as birds, reptilians are not quite as socially evolved so they rarely pair up or even experience downsides of lifetime of isolation. But as more complex neurological beings we humans are more socially interconnected, and when this basic instinct gets violated against or somehow broken by isolation / outcasted status human mind starts to seek the same connection with other things, it may be a dog, cat, volley ball or a sack of flour. This is more pronounced in extroverted individuals than introverted individuals but even introverts can go "bonkers" if left alone for too long.

Edited by Pencils
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I've heard about these RealDolls too, and watched a couple of documentaries on them.... I understand that your motive for writing this is that the relationship is not purely sexual, and more platonically based, but still I find it interesting how there's been such a paradigm shift in our concept of sexuality...And even legal partnerships/marriages (with people marrying cars, characters on a Nintendo DS and the Eiffel Tower)...

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This is more pronounced in extroverted individuals than introverted individuals but even introverts can go "bonkers" if left alone for too long.

 

Posted Image

 

I'm sorry it was so hard for me not to make this.

 

Getting back on topic now...

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I saw a special on tv (or rather my family watched as I observed certain parts) about people who live with dolls like the ones mentioned in the article. The special depicted a guy who lives with his doll that he calls his wife. He seemed like a normal mid-late 40s american man. Apparently he bought the doll a few years after his wife died. The doll gave him a companionship he desperately needed at his home to help him with his depression, anxiety, etc.

 

I thought it was a nice story on how this man used a doll and his imagination to help him with his troubles. I can see how this really does relate to us enjoying MLP. Whenever I'm in a fowl mood and have some time on my hands I turn on an episode of MLP and it makes me feel better.

 

---

 

There is one thing I didn't like about seeing this tv special, and that was that the special purposely twisted the story to seem weird, ugly, or disgusting. The man would talk about him spending the day with his new doll wife and they'd play horrid ambient music like he just ate a puppy! :( They also went out of their way to find the most unflattering shots of the doll as possible. They turned a nice story into a horror story just for ratings. D:

 

What's worse was my family reactions to it. Perhaps they fell for the studio tricks and music keys or they really couldn't get over their own prejudices about the situation. They'd say all kinds of rude comments about the guy and how he's a freak or how he needs to get a life. This was even before I heard of MLP as a thing, but even back then I felt hurt about what they were saying about this poor old man. He had a job, he had friends, and he even had a wife who he tragically lost. He was just another human being who happened to enjoy the company of his doll and my family tore him to bits on the tv screen because of this ONE thing!

 

This is why I hate most of society. It seems that they are pushed to be very judgmental. They tear each other down about the stupidest little differences in opinions. It makes for a very intolerant world where everyone is pushed to conformity, or try to be an individual and become a laughing stock.

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I saw a special on tv (or rather my family watched as I observed certain parts) about people who live with dolls like the ones mentioned in the article. The special depicted a guy who lives with his doll that he calls his wife. He seemed like a normal mid-late 40s american man. Apparently he bought the doll a few years after his wife died. The doll gave him a companionship he desperately needed at his home to help him with his depression, anxiety, etc.

 

I thought it was a nice story on how this man used a doll and his imagination to help him with his troubles. I can see how this really does relate to us enjoying MLP. Whenever I'm in a fowl mood and have some time on my hands I turn on an episode of MLP and it makes me feel better.

 

---

 

There is one thing I didn't like about seeing this tv special, and that was that the special purposely twisted the story to seem weird, ugly, or disgusting. The man would talk about him spending the day with his new doll wife and they'd play horrid ambient music like he just ate a puppy! :( They also went out of their way to find the most unflattering shots of the doll as possible. They turned a nice story into a horror story just for ratings. D:

 

What's worse was my family reactions to it. Perhaps they fell for the studio tricks and music keys or they really couldn't get over their own prejudices about the situation. They'd say all kinds of rude comments about the guy and how he's a freak or how he needs to get a life. This was even before I heard of MLP as a thing, but even back then I felt hurt about what they were saying about this poor old man. He had a job, he had friends, and he even had a wife who he tragically lost. He was just another human being who happened to enjoy the company of his doll and my family tore him to bits on the tv screen because of this ONE thing!

 

This is why I hate most of society. It seems that they are pushed to be very judgmental. They tear each other down about the stupidest little differences in opinions. It makes for a very intolerant world where everyone is pushed to conformity, or try to be an individual and become a laughing stock.

 

I can only agree on this and I too have seen a documentary on these dolls some time back, before I knew about MLP, I found it intriguing to watch and hear how these people enjoyed this companionship the dolls gave them and my family was the same as yours, insulting the people for wierd interests just because of their opinions and their preferences.

 

It is alot like being a furry or being one of the more hardcore fans of MLP, the society will shun us for being us, they hate us becuase of our preferences, not because of who we are but because of an interest.

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