There are many psychologists that claim that social networks alienate by keeping us away from real-life encounters, but in Japan, the “2D Lover” is a social phenomenon with its routes in Japanese social status and family traditions, and not in the social networking phenomenon.
2D lovers are men passionate about 2D characters (usually manga) which have been screened onto pillowcases. Doctors claim this is a follow up of the hikikomori phenomenon, when men were afraid to go outside so stayed home.
The 2D love craziness has its roots in the Otaku movement as characters from games, anime and manga movies are transformed into pillowcases and some men develop a relationship with them. Some of them are married, some of them are single but they all build up a close relationship with their favourite fantasy characters.
Doctors say it’s unhealthy that some Japanese men are embracing this new trend due to their lack of interaction with female humans. In a world dominated by emotional crisis and lack of time to take care of our inner self, who are we to say who others should love?
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