If you are a parent who disapproves of your child's partner, maybe you should be thankful that they are of flesh and blood as opposed to, say, a pillow.
Attraction to inanimate objects is rare, but it affects enough people for there to be global organizations dedicated to objectum sexuality, and the things that this eclectic bunch have lost their hearts to makes clips like the one below from Lars and the Real Girl seem tame:
So, without further ado, let's go forth and meet some of the world's strangest significant others.
6. A Steam Train Engine
Who Married It: Joachim A of Germany
What's His History? 41-year-old Joachim realized he was attracted to inanimate objects at the tender age of 12 and began a "an emotionally and physically very complex and deep relationship" with a Hammond organ. He is deeply attracted to the inner workings of technical objects and believes this is where his desire to have relationships with inanimate objects came from.
In His Own Words: "You can reveal yourself to an object partner in an intimate way, in a way that you would never reveal yourself to any other person."
5. The Eiffel Tower
Who Married It: Erika Eiffel of San Francisco, U.S.A.
What's Her History? Erika Eiffel's history of objectum sexuality is a lot more tragic than some of the others in this list. After enlisting in the US airforce, she was sexually assaulted by another cadet and only managed to repel his advances with a training sword. After the incident, she explained:
"I really felt that the only way for me to sleep is if I was holding onto something, like my sword, because that was the one thing that protected me. And it just got worse."
After this event, she dedicated herself to archery (she was on the American national team for three years) and became more interested in her attraction to objects.
She later founded OS Internationale to bring other people who are attracted to objects together to help stop them feeling isolated and alone.
In Her Own Words: When Erika was in the United States Air Force Academy and she first saw a F-15 jet, she said: "I'd like to get to know this jet. Kind of like a guy goes to a bar and he sees a really nice-looking girl and he, he wants to go sit next to her, buy her a drink and get to know her more. Well, I kind of felt that way about the F-15."
4. A Life Sized Photo
Who Married It: Liu Ye of China
What's His History? There isn't much information about 39-year-old Liu Ye except that he said that he claimed to be so dissatisfied with reality that he was going to marry himself. Yep I know, doesn't make any sense to me either.
In His Own Words: "Marrying myself is a process of deconstructing and reconstructing myself. I make use of the wedding to reconsider opposite-sex marriage. My behavior seems ridiculous, but I am traditional and conservative in heart so the wedding ceremony is traditional."
3. The Berlin Wall
Who Married It: Eija-Riitta Berliner-Mauer of Sweden
What's Her History: Eija-Riitta, whose married name means Berlin Wall in German, claims that she fell in love with her 'husband' the first time she saw him on TV, aged 17. After visiting the wall several times, they eventually tied the knot in 1979 in front of a handful of supportive friends. Needless to say, when the wall was pulled down in 1989, Eija-Riitta was devastated, she told the press "what they did was awful. They mutilated my husband."
In Her Own Words: "I find long, slim things with horizontal lines very sexy. The Great Wall of China's attractive, but he’s too thick – my husband is sexier."
2. A Fairground Ride
Who Married It? Amy Wolfe Weber of Pennsylvania, U.S.A.
What's Her History? 35-year-old church organist, Amy Wolfe, fell for the fairground ride when she first saw it aged 13. Since then, and after a courtship of 3000 rides, Amy has married the 80ft gondola ride and adopted the name of its manufacturer 'Weber.'
Although she has known she's been attracted to objects for years, Amy was ashamed so she kept her love to herself for a long time, she told the press that:
"I was instantly attracted to him sexually and mentally. I wasn’t freaked out, as it just felt so natural, but I didn’t tell anyone about it because I knew it wasn’t ‘normal’ to have feelings for a fairground ride."
In Her Own Words: “I love him as much as women love their husbands and know we’ll be together forever.”
1. A Pillow
Who Married It? Lee Jin-gyu of Korea
What's His History? I can't find any information on Lee Jin-gyu's past, but it's probably quite lonely seeing as he married a pillow with a face on it...
The pillow bride sports popular anime character Fate Testarossa's face and was wedded to her groom by a local priest.
In His Own Words: There are no quotes from Lee Jin-gyu, but his friends say:
"He is completely obsessed with this pillow and takes it everywhere. They go out to the park or the funfair where it will go on all the rides with him. Then when he goes out to eat he takes it with him and it gets its own seat and its own meal."
While it's hard to relate to people who have unusual attractions like this, let's try and keep it civil in the comments. In the words of professor Volkmar Sigusch of Frankfurt University:
"The objectophiles aren't hurting anyone. They're not abusing or traumatizing other people. Who else can you say that about?"