Stone had been inside the simulation for over a week when a concerned neighbour called the emergency services.
“No way I am coming out,” Stone told reporters who contacted her inside the virtual reality universe. “I never had it so good. I am 19 years old in here. We are doing ballroom dancing and the boys are all handsome navy cadets.”
Mental health professionals have raised the alarm about virtual reality addiction recently, saying it is only a matter of time before this addictive and frighteningly realistic technology claims casualties.
“We need to educate users about the dangers of virtual reality,” Professor of Psychiatry Samuel Silverstein of The University of Kansas said. Silverstein is a specialist in treating addictions. “Their real lives are still there, and the longer they remain inside the fake world, the harder it becomes to face reality again,” Silverstein said.“My husband died 20 years ago”, Stone said from inside her universe. “My children live in California. I had nothing to do. Feeding pigeons in the park was the highlight of the day. Things are much better in here. Everything is non-stop fun and action. In real life, I only had one lover in my whole life, my late husband. Here, I have them by the dozen. Finally, I am miss popular.”
Profesor Silverstein warned emergency workers against pulling the plug on the computer which runs the virtual reality Grace Stone is inside. “It can read to reality shock and require involuntary hospitalisation,” Silverstein said. “Pulling the plug and making her world go dark should only be a last, desperate measure.”
As the standoff continued in her Goodland home, Grace Stone was reportedly pursuing a career as a figure skating champion.