I had asked Jonathon to respond on a warblogger quote about Japan before I read his posting today, I am very intense.

In the posting, an extraordinary exposition of self, Jonathon writes about an online relationship he once had:

We drove each other crazy. Minor issues of emphasis or tone in an e-mail led to massive misunderstandings and flurries of conciliatory messages. I longed for the unspoken understanding and emotional restraint that I’d shared with my Japanese girlfriends.



Eventually it blew up in our faces. A virtual relationship was—paradoxically—simply too intense. People told me this wasn’t a real relationship but that’s not how it felt. At the time, it seemed absolutely real. As real as the lilting tone of her voice, as real as the lingerie on her bed.

I had once asked, long ago in this weblog, can true relationships develop with people we meet online. I was answered by many that, yes, they can. Jonathon’s experience was not so fortunate.

It would seem that online relationships work well for some, and quite badly for others. And when the relationship doesn’t go well, one is then left with the question: if the connection is so virtual, why then is the pain of the loss of the relationship so real?

Jonathon, my sympathies for Pudding.

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