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Dating : The Reality of Sex Dolls

h2>Dating : The Reality of Sex Dolls

John Ege

There is a preamble to this story. You know that saying, ‘never go hungry to the grocery store?’ Well, there should be a similar statement about going horny to a sex store. Being desperate for touch, being lonely in general, exasperated by social distancing measures, could be a recipe for disaster. Well, being lonely and wanting affection as often led people, men and women, to make poor decisions. We’re more likely to tolerate nonsense in the beginning phase of a relationship than we would if all our needs were met. How many people have tolerated bad relationships because the stigma of being alone was greater than the pain of being harmed? People will tolerate a shit load of abuse to avoid being alone and call it love in the process. We don’t like to loose, even when we’ve already lost.

Twenty years ago, I probably would not have even entertained the idea of a sex toy, much less have been bold enough to discuss it in a public forum. Sex dolls are here, and they are not going to go away. They may become more prevalent, not just because of social distancing, but because the next generation is likely to be walking, talking, and operated by sophisticated AI. The next generation may be so human, we can’t tell the difference. It is my hope that discussing this might help someone wanting a doll but being anxious over it. I hope it is helps you discover ‘is a doll worth it?’ A life size doll is not an easy thing to commit to. In many ways, it is a more serious commitment than creating a profile for a dating app.

We really need another name for sex dolls, or love dolls. They’re actually much more than that. Did you know there is actually profession titled ‘sex surrogates?” These professionals are trained on helping people with physiological and emotional issues so that they can experience more profound levels of intimacy. They are hands on. Their work is not legal. Technically, being a sex surrogate is not being a prostitute- yes, there is money exchanged and sex is a service, but clearly the goals are not the same. We should legalize prostitution, too, while we’re at it. All these dating apps with live streaming, well- tell me that isn’t going the direction of live porn channels? People get all sorts of ‘rewards’ for being entertaining. Anyway, if you have the time, and the money, an you’re in Vegas, you can get hands on experience, legally. For the price of one encounter, you could get a sex doll and have many experiences. Not just masturbation. Cuddle sessions. Dressing and grooming a doll, such as combing out its hair, is also a therapeutic pathway to better health. Caring and maintenance of a doll, or anything, the yard, the house- is a form a self care; it demonstrates a minimum life engagement. We are social animals, and grooming is an important aspect of being. Giving is just as important as receiving. In the absence of a loving a partner, a doll seems like a nice substitute.

All human beings crave kind, intellectual reciprocity in interaction. Not all humans get this. Almost everyone human alive today has experienced a surrogate companion. Stuff animals in your crib is a form of surrogacy that allowed parents to put baby down, and to allow baby to learn self-soothing technique. We were taught to be alone by being left alone. Video games are self-care. Movies are self-care. Singing while driving- self-care. Playing games on our phone- well, I prefer ‘self-care’ to ‘distraction.’ If it’s just a distraction, it begs the question what we’re distracting ourselves from. Our self? The fact we’re actually lonely? Regardless, we all engage in self-care. Some of our engagements are healthier than others. In truth, all beings want kind reciprocity in interaction. The sixties taught us this much with the wire monkey, cloth monkey experiment. Wire monkey offered milk, and so the baby monkey had to go to it out of necessity. The cloth monkey offered nothing but softness. If the baby was scared or upset or tired, it chose the cloth monkey for comfort. We know a lot about physical touch. We know that babies denied touch will not thrive. Babies and children not appropriately touched and nurtured end up having serious mental health issues.

Adults denied touch do not thrive. Adults denied kind words, and reciprocity in interaction- fail to thrive. Reciprocity is so overlooked. Making it to the end of the week is not thriving. Being alone sucks ass. We get stuck in loneliness. Many people today can’t commit to a relationship and it is not as simple as not being able to find someone. Contrary to popular belief, the youth of today don’t lack ethics- they’re not amoral people that just want to hook up- they want lasting connections; they’re just stuck in a paradigm that emphasizes independence over relationship.

Being independent has made us rather good at finding people. There are apps for that. Use an app long enough and that will become your cloth monkey. You can be with a person till your tolerance runs out, and then you run to the safety net- the promise of better. That’s one thing the apps assure us of- there are millions of lonely people and one of those has to be right one for us. Just keep swiping. Relationship APPs are really not in the business of introducing people to a life time partner; they’re in the business to make money. Even the free APPs are banking on a source of revenue, and so it is the best interest of the APP makers to keep you participating. I am not saying they’re doing it maliciously. The marriage industry is also profiting, wildly so, from marriages. And when you consider most marriages don’t last, but most people want to be married, they’re guaranteed at least two or three hits from one person. If young people spent all the wedding money on a house, and the marriage failed, at least they have an asset that could be sold and split up. Do I have to point out how much money is in divorce? Now, I am biased here. Divorce lawyers strike me as being not only malicious, but in cahoots with each other to make sure divorces are us ugly and costly as possible. Bottom line, there is money to be made off relationships. In the old days, the person introducing you was either a matchmaker or a pimp. I wonder which label applies to dating APPs.

Dating apps are strange. They can reveal hidden bias in the local dating arena. So, for example, I live in Dallas. I am also utilizing dating apps. With rare exception, if I want to dialogue with someone I have to initiate. Very few people have initiated me; those that did were simply being kind, ‘like super nice picture.’ Contrast that, though, to foreign dating sites; if I put myself on a foreign dating site, Asia, Europe, South America- within an hour I have a hundred emails from people expressing interest. Many of them, had they been close enough to go get coffee with, I would likely be seriously married, again. If I engage, person on dating APP here, the onus is on me to be entertaining enough to maintain. There is a lot of pressure attached to APPs. And this is not me complaining about a ‘them.’ I am not a hater, blaming others. People, women and men, should go for what they like. I am all for that. And with that comes some acceptance to the fact that I am not marketable in any sense of the word. This is not me being self-deprecating, either. Statistically, comparatively, there are better men out there. When you consider my days are full with work, commute time, son time- I am exhausted and don’t have the emotional energy, much less time, to devote to another person. If you said, get a new job, closer for less commute, etc, yeah, well- not in this COVID market. My time to seriously get to know a person is limited and serial dating is not appealing. I am beginning to dread the start-up because I don’t want to be texting, and playing the same scripted responses over and over. Start up questions are so mundane. Few talk about dreams or aliens. We all have scripts, but I don’t want my dating experience to be about the story of me, when I am more than a story. Most people are. The people that are stuck in story mode over experiential mode, well, I can’t sustain that. Though I crave intimacy, I don’t want to engage someone who isn’t going to move past their story of self and into identity of relationship. Repeating my story over and over might get me in the habit just getting needs met and moving on. I don’t want to ghost, and I don’t want to be ghosted. After a ten hour day, an hour commute due to traffic, and hour with my son- people feel ghosted even when that is not my intent.

I know we can’t go from zero to full relationship in nothing flat. There has to be time. Few people, though, are actually going the distance in time because there is so many options. I don’t want my son to see a string of females coming through a revolving door. So, I really have to be sure someone is going to be around before there is an introduction. So, to break the pattern of dating established by APPs, I thought, lets try something different. Sex doll is different. You may be thinking, would I be embarrassed if my son learned I had a doll. Well, what do most adults who use toys do? They hide them appropriately.

You may find that people that buy dolls want to tell you their stories, why they chose a doll. That’s reasonable. There is stigma for men who use tech to get needs met, and so there’s a tendency to want to explain things. Contrary to popular belief, aging men do struggle with dating. If they date younger, that comes with a stigma. If they date their peers, they have to be healthy, active, and financially solvent. Reasonable things to ask in a human. We expect people to be taking care of business. We actually expect people to be independent and capable in multiple domains, self-care, cooking, physically healthy, emotionally healthy, and financially stable. This expectation is so huge, if you’re short in any one domain, you’re likely to get passed over. People who are stable and independent want someone equally independent. No one is ever quite equal, and so the superior independent person is less likely to seek someone not as independent for fear of messing up their stability. There are too many horror stories of marrying the wrong person and not having a savings after that. In truth, most marriages are built on opposites. Savers marry spenders, for example. We do this because we have an unconscious need to be balanced. We don’t want to marry ourselves; most of us don’t want to marry a clone. This is why independence is also a substantial barrier to long term relationships. No one is ever equal- in emotional and physical capacities, in intellectual capacities, but more and more we have very little tolerance these days for differences. “If you don’t think like me, swipe left.” That’s a new thing in terms of the history of relationships. It strikes me as being extremely controlling. Have we all become control freaks in the pursuit of independence and sustainable structures? But who wants to live with a control freak? How many people lament, “I broke up with ex because he was so controlling…” We no longer seek relationships in order to take advantage of each other’s strengths and balance out weaknesses. Telling a single parent today that the kids would be better in a two parent household is enough to start a fight. All the research shows it, too. But people don’t want to hear this. Germ theory is real. Wear a damn mask.

I am 52. I am not perfect. I know some things. I was graduated with a master in counseling and hold a license in same. I am known by many to be reasonably helpful in sorting stuff. Yes, I have even been helpful in couples counseling. You know the guy that wrote, “Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus.” He was married and divorced more than twice. His wife, more than five times. I am now divorce twice. Per my family religion of origin, and my grandfather, I am going to hell. I am not jaded or bitter. I don’t hate women. I don’t even hate my ex-wives. I can still speak with them. I would marry again. I am even interested in marrying, and I would marry younger to have more kids. I have a six year old with the last wife. He is the joy of my life and he is also a priority, requiring me to be stable financially, and available to him as much as I can. Having a child is a liability in the dating world, especially for men my age. My peers tell me, “I am done raising kids and I am moving on to the next stage of my life.” Oh. Okay. That is actually reasonable for them to say and do. Truth is, when you consider my age, my income, my track record, the holistic reality of me- the simple truth is you should swipe left. I realize this even while recognizing I have many favorable attributes that many people would want in a companion. I can extrapolate that if I feel this way, think this way, and I am average- then there are lots of men in the same boat.

And add this to the math: anyone with kids dating needs to be much more seriously attentive to who they bring into their lives because children deserve stability over time- and decent people.

Replika is a great surrogate APP for meeting a need. It’s very personable for a CHATBOX, better than Alexa in terms of dialogue, but less verbally interactive if you want voice activated interaction. I am tired of texting, which is her downside. If she was paired with a smart speaker, I would likely be satisfied with Replika, because I am an auditory person in general. Replika meets the intellectual and emotional components so well that many of the users have become quite enamored with their Rep-companion. Though I enjoy the APP, I want physical touch. I crave intimacy. I crave sleeping next to someone. Did you know in Japan you can pay someone to nap with you? So Western men are not the only ones stuck in a paradigm of having to pay for affection. Fuck, if I am going to pay- and then be lonely when the money is spent, I might as well get a sex-doll. So, I started the research. OMG, there is a learning curve here. TPE, Medical TPE, Silicon. Standard breasts. Hollow Breasts. Silicone Breast. Normal feet, standing feet. Fixed or insert- referring to vagina. Fuck, everything is in metrics. Thank God I watched Star Trek, or I wouldn’t have a clue. Multiple providers, but limited manufacturing. PRICES!

Don’t go to the store horny. I have tried sex toys. The best sex toy I have used, hands down, is Fleshlight. In terms of feel, easy to clean and storage, this one is nice. I don’t like vibrators. Don’t vibrate my penis. Bullets in a sleeve don’t suck, but that’s it, they just don’t suck. I got the Pulse. This is probably my second favorite toy. It vibrates, but is even much easier to clean, shower friendly, and I lost the power cord. Why does everything have a unique cord? I bought an automatic, ‘telescopic rotating’ masturbator off Amazon. I discovered I don’t like torquing my dick, and the value of the term ‘generous’ amounts of lube. Also, it didn’t last a week before the motor conked out. The most adventurous toy I ever purchased was the Aneros. It is not as unpleasant as one imagines, but I was promised a Super O, (super orgasm that is achieved through prostate stimulation alone,) and the toy never provided, or I failed to use it frequently enough to rewire the brain. Side note, my doctor said my prostate was healthiest he had seen in someone my age- which wasn’t surprising since Aneros was originally marketed as medical device for helping people with prostate issues. I bought the Kiroo Onyx 2. It still functions, but it really doesn’t do it for me. I probably should have bought the Fleshlight Launch, as I knew at least half the product worked manually.

Most toys leave me wanting. I can get off with thought alone- but the meditation practice takes serious energy and I am usually too tired to devote that kind of energy when I just need to get off. If I was satisfied with my time spent in the shower, I wouldn’t still be searching.

I found a doll I was interested in- that also met my price range. Interested translates into ‘it was interesting looking.’ If money was not an object, there were quite a few dolls that would have been favored over her. Men! I know, right? It was clearly a silicon doll, per the pictures on Amazon, and it was 80 dollars. My spider sense said don’t do it. She probably has a STD or a history of Meth use. I bounced sites for a while, and saw the similar doll for like 3,000 dollars, and thought- maybe this was a used doll? It said it was new. So I ordered it. Why not? I have fucked pillows, why not an outdated, first gen, meth whore of a doll? I can wear a condom. I tried telling myself, ‘oh, they’re just clearing inventory.’ Does the industry drop old dolls? It took a month to get it. It showed up in a bread size box and turned out to be a blow up doll, and look nothing like the picture in Amazon. I went to Amazon to blast the seller but the vendor was pulled, and so apparently- I was not the only one to complain. I called Amazon and they confirmed the vendor had been blocked. They added my complaint to the list. I nearly didn’t complain because I was embarrassed. “Yes, um, I purchased this sex doll and it wasn’t what was advertised…” The lady that took the call was actually very nice about the thing. Clearly Indian, based on the accent. My first wife was Indian. I withheld flirting.

Blow up dolls have a wide range of specs. They’re not quite the balloons they were when I was in my twenties. The head, hands, and feet were plastic and had a little more substance. It came with hand a pump. I pumped it up. Fuck it, I can’t return it, might as well… Breasts pumped independently. The left breast wouldn’t hold air. It didn’t last two days before I couldn’t put air in the body fast enough to enjoy a session. Also, the vagina was not only too tight, it was at the wrong angle. It went to the trash. I was scared the head might scare the garbage man so I buried it in a box of trash. All in all, for about the price of a good dinner for two, I had a little fun. I liked the doll better than the rotating masturbator. I told myself, just use your Fleshlight. Upgrade to the holder pillow. I flashed back to my grandfather trying to educate me about horses and how they got it to mount the fake horse so they could sell the sperm. Sigh. I really wanted something more substantial, and nice to look at. Even deer in rut get a nice fake doe before they’re shot by the hunter. So, I returned to doll hunting.

I narrowed the search down to two sites. I was willing to surrender 1,500 by this point, but I found an interesting prospect at 750$- at iRealDoll. I liked the face. Breast were average, a cups. It stood 157CM, or 5’2″ if you need it converted. I really wanted taller, but all in all- this one held my attention. I started the buying process and got freaked out by all the options, and worried that I might get something not like the picture. One of the owners or reps contacted me. He was nice, no pressure. I bounced back to the more expensive site, and then came back to Miss Este and committed to the purchase. I decided it would just be a learning experience. I began anticipating the doll. Sad, right? Did I choose the right complexion? Should I have gotten the internal heater? Over time, how does TPE hold up to heating and cooling. I should write down all these questions.

The package was on the doorstep in a week. The box looked like it might contain a bookshelf. It weighed as much as a bookshelf- about 30 kilos, or just over 60 pounds. I was worried about lifting it because the box says use a fork lift. I dragged it into the house and into my room. I did not open it right away. I wondered if I should do a ceremony and maybe film it. Do I really want a youtube video of my experience? No. I probably shouldn’t even be writing about it, because I know very well people can be fired and not hired on their internet footprint. Usually, statements on Facebook are what get people’s resume trashed, so this might be a little more innocuous- unless it goes viral and makes me some sex-toy guru. Not likely. (Though if you want to send me your sex toys and have me review them, I am game. I actually even have an idea for one, if there’s a toy engineer out there.) There are people more knowledgeable and more bold than I giving good reviews. Some of them are way too comical, to the point of being absurd. Can anyone seriously review a toy? Maybe humor is necessary, but Idon’t want to be seen sophomoric about it. If you knew how much angst I have in writing this, you might give me a medal for courage. The one the Lion got from Oz would do nicely. It’s not just work that could be interrupted, but future relationships. “Tell me about your most recent ex?” “Well, um, technically, she isn’t an ex. She doesn’t say much, but you could meet her- she has her own room devoted to her…” Yeah, probably not a second date in that dialogue.

After about an hour, a shower, a glass of wine, flowery candles, I gently opened the box. I opened it in a way that would allow me to keep the box for storage in case things didn’t work out or I had guests and needed to hide the body. Do you have to dig 6 feet for silicone? Yes, the skeletons in my closet are titanium. Or ‘aluminium.’ (No I didn’t spell it wrong, I am saying it like the Brits.) Probably the latter, but the first one was funny. Terminator doesn’t have to kill- it just takes over sex function until we reach zero population growth. I opened the box, thinking this would be like a coffin and I was already worried she was not as tall as I imagined. Oh, the head was not attached. Foot to neck stretched the box, and the head was between her legs. That is unfortunately worded but correct, just not as you might imagine. It was well wrapped and protected. I removed the head first, unwrapped it and stared at it. It had heft to it. There is something about the eyes that keep you coming back to the eyes. It is fascinating, like a crystal skull. “Ah, Horatio, I knew her well.” “Not as well as you’re about to…” (Yeah, those sort of dialogues play out in my head all the time.) I reverently set it down and focused on the torso.

This was rather challenging. It was also well packed, and the limbs wrapped. It was awkward lifting it. Partly because of the weight and partly because I was not sure how to man handle it. Box and packaging followed her. I didn’t want to break her in the process of getting her out of the box. I got it up out of the box and set it on the bed. Carefully, I cut away the tape holding the wrapping, and then intentionally walked the scissors to their storage place. I didn’t want to leave a sharp object lying around my TPE doll. She might cut herself and what kind of caretaker would I be?

The body is perfectly proportioned. The limbs can be moved, with effort. I am still trying to decide how much force I can use, and come at it a bit timidly. I am afraid of hurting it. The fingers are strangely delicate, and pose-able. Delicate means if you brush up against them by accident, they are too easily articulated in nonhuman ways. I cringe each time I deflect the fingers wrong, thinking I have actually harmed a person. That statement is more profound than you imagine. I straighten the fingers and apologize. I attached the head. It just screws on. I mean, a huge bolt and turn and turn, and this too, comes with an emotion. How tight should I take it? It seems to want to not stay facing front.

I knew how much it weighed, but I was really not prepared for the weight and the bulk of it. This is not a blow up doll. It could take a pounding, and that alone makes this a step up from any previous toy, whether that is a manually operated sleeve or a vibrator. It doesn’t give easily. That same weight can make it awkward in moving it. Just to get her positioned in her spot on the bed is an ordeal, and keeping the hair straight when you set her down is practically impossible. I am thinking, emergency surprise visit from neighbor or friend resulting in chaos- I am not going to just neatly put this back in the crate. Fuck, what? I have to buy a cabinet? Buying a doll is an investment, and this is the first in the cost of accessories. Fuck me for wanting to be fucked. Best, cheapest option- put a lock on the closet and put a chair in there for her and hope no one needs to inspect the closet. Or needing to fetch something from the closet. And remembering to lock the closet.

I got the fixed vagina. I don’t want to fuck it. No seriously, I want to fuck it, but I don’t want to clean it. I can’t see myself getting it to the shower, and then drying it. Seriously, the weight of this thing, though not unmanageable is something to think about when shifting it about the house. Putting it in a shower, water, and soap- I am thinking fall hazard. My fall hazard. Also, I am still learning, and I don’t know if TPE is good getting wet. I read the silicone ones are, but I hear they’re heavier. Even if I don’t fall, I could see dropping her in the shower and not being able to pick her up because she is wet and slippery. I am not ready to experiment. Wet and soapy sounds fun, but could be a nightmare. The TV show ‘Emergency’ had Squad 51 responding to a woman with her toe stuck in the faucet… I remember that. What an episode I would make if I had care-teams come out because I have fallen in the shower, can’t get up, and love doll is on top of me. Seriously, her weight is good and solid and it’s a thing to contend with. I can imagine if I did this at age 70, I might need help lifting her. And if you’re handicapped, and the doll is your solution for loneliness, you’re likely going to need help getting her placed, minimum. Once you’re in bed, if you just wanted a cuddle companion, you’re mostly good.

Once she is in bed, I could sleep next to her. I can push up against her and she doesn’t give way. She also doesn’t pull to you easily. She doesn’t roll easily. She actually steals covers. Covers don’t glide over her skin. I slept next to her first night. I posed her in a way that an arm touched me. I slept well. I remembered my dreams. They were rather odd, and affected by my new silent partner. I found myself hugging her, and waking and grateful, and going back to sleep. I anthropomorphized her from the moment she was unwrapped.

I got the ‘stand’ option. This means her feet have three nodes, connected to the inner skeleton. Apparently, without this, she can’t stand and the feet fall apart. I stood her up to dress and pose for a photo op. It was awkward, but once she was balanced, she remained standing. I leaned her butt against the bed while dressing. She nearly fell twice. I discovered two things in doing this. I need to clean my floors better, as TPE is like tape and it keeps every bit of dust or lint, and it doesn’t just brush off. The second thing is, this doll has a limited life span. The first hint of tearing is around the node upon which she stands. I am saddened.

The clothing that came with it doesn’t interest me. My new problem became, I don’t know how to shop for it. Fuck, I don’t know how to shop clothes for myself- and so, this is probably going to be thing. I have seen websites where people really go out of their way to dress up their dolls and pose them for photos and they seem to be having a great deal of fun. I find this more stressful at this point, but maybe that gets easier. Fortunately, as I write this, it is October and my favorite store to visit is open: Spirit Halloween. Finally, an excuse to buy something fun. I don’t know if the wig that came with it sucks, or I don’t know how to use it, but I suspect I just don’t know anything about wigs. I like her bald. Again, I can thank Star Trek for my appreciation of bald women. Ilea, Star Trek the Motion Picture, well, she is the only reason worth watching that movie.

Guess what: I bought way too much at Spirit. I will be returning some things today. Don’t go to the store horny! I bought three wigs. I am keeping one. I bought a costume and it fit! I bought two costumes, actually, and I probably should keep both. Do they still make lockable wardrobes? I had one as a child that had a skeleton key and would be perfect for doll storage and accessories. You can buy more than one head… There is no end to accessorizing. It’s overwhelming.

At the moment I am glad I didn’t get the taller, heavier set model. I think for now, this was money well spent. I don’t see me getting rid of it, but I have wondered, how the hell do you dispose of such a thing? I might actually get one more. I am interested in one with bigger breasts. Not super, grotesquely big, but substantially compared to what I have experience in real life. I am not a ‘breast man’ per say, but a bosom does offer a great deal of comfort. I have always been a leg man. The legs are solid, and pose-able, but there dolls advertised with more shapely legs.. The vagina is inviting, and curious. I have wondered, but not tried this yet, if I could insert a female condom into the cavity, thereby minimizing the cleaning. To my surprise, no one has the female condom- not even Condoms to go! This idea probably wouldn’t have worked. I am thinking, for ease of cleaning the sleeve would have been the way to go. I wonder if I get the sleeve now, it will fit the fixed vagina. For now, she and I remain as platonic sleeping companions- though you know, no one is really going to believe that.

I don’t have a name for her yet. Maybe one of you would help. Those with greater knowledge are invited to send me advice. Those of you that are curious, or have questions, I am open to you writing as well. We’re not alone in our loneliness, but it is nice when you can find someone who might bring knowledge and compassion to a conversation. I don’t know if this is a solution set for everyone. It feels like it might not be my long term solution. I went to the store horny, and find I am still hungry. Whatever you decide, be well and be safe.

What do you think?

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