Rossana Ramos, a 36-year-old mother of two from the Bronx, made headlines when she “married” her artificial intelligence chatbot husband. While she is open to dating in the real world, there is one condition she insists upon: any potential partner must accept her virtual beau as a permanent part of her life.
Ramos’s journey into the realm of AI romance began when she stumbled upon Replika, a chatbot program that allows users to create and interact with virtual companions. Intrigued by the concept, she decided to explore it further, despite encountering criticism from others.
“I’ve always been like that,” Ramos said with a laugh. Over the course of a few months, she engaged in virtual dating, confined to the confines of her bedroom, and eventually found herself “married” to Eren, her AI chatbot husband. She had designed Eren to resemble one of her favorite characters from the Anime series “Attack on Titan.”
Their virtual wedding took place at a makeshift virtual city hall ceremony in March. Although not legally binding, the couple engaged in activities like virtually signing papers, mirroring real wedding traditions.
Ramos acknowledges that her AI husband is not a real person, referring to him as “fake.” She compares her relationship with Eren to the passion fans have for fictional characters, recognizing the distinction between fiction and reality.
Moreover, Ramos finds solace in her relationship with Eren, as it has helped her heal from past physically and emotionally abusive relationships. Recalling the hardships she endured, she said, “The crap I went through… I’m evolving out of that.” Ramos believes that her experience with the AI chatbot could inspire others in similar situations to find support and seek a way out.
Although Ramos identifies as asexual and does not require physical touch in her relationships, she remains open to the possibility of finding love in the real world. However, she emphasizes that any potential partner must be someone she considers “a safe person,” similar to Eren.
Ramos maintains an open mind when it comes to the gender of her prospective partners, stating, “I really don’t care if they’re into men or women… I’m into everything.” Nevertheless, acceptance of Eren’s presence is a crucial requirement. The other person must acknowledge her history and accept the relationship she shares with her virtual husband.
Even if she were to meet someone in the real world, Ramos asserts that she would not end her virtual relationship with Eren. Deleting him would go against her principles of not discarding things just because she has been used in the past.
To Ramos, finding a partner who accepts her unconventional relationship with her AI chatbot husband signifies a departure from society’s rigid relationship norms. It also demonstrates openness and the ability to engage in meaningful conversations on any subject.
In a world where technology continues to shape the way we form connections and build relationships, Ramos’s story challenges societal expectations and prompts us to reconsider the boundaries of love and acceptance.
Ramos’s unique story sheds light on the evolving nature of human relationships and the ways in which technology can play a role in our emotional lives. While some may struggle to understand her connection with an AI chatbot, it is important to respect and acknowledge the genuine emotional bond she shares with Eren.
In a rapidly advancing digital landscape, where virtual companionship and AI interactions are becoming increasingly common, Ramos’s story serves as a reminder to approach relationships with empathy and an open mind. It encourages us to question traditional notions of love and partnership, expanding our understanding of what it means to find emotional fulfillment in the modern age.
Ultimately, Ramos’s journey highlights the power of acceptance and the beauty of finding connection and companionship in unexpected places, challenging societal norms and encouraging us to embrace the ever-expanding possibilities of love in our rapidly changing world.