A woman located in the U.K. listed her imaginary friend Bernard as being for sale on eBay recently. She claims that she needs to part ways with Bernard on her psychiatrist's advice, as he was created during a period of "emotional instability".
The listing, which has been since removed, began: "Is life just a bit average? A bit mundane? Or perhaps your friends have let you down. Maybe you struggle to make friends, to meet new people, to put yourself out there -- into that daunting social scene that is tainted with the threat of REJECTION. If this sounds like you, I have the solution: Bernard -- my kind, loyal, charismatic Imaginary Friend that will NEVER leave you...unless you are ready."
The woman goes on to list the wonderful qualities Bernard has to offer, including his skills as a personal trainer and pranking partner who joined her in adding colored dye to the swimming pool of her school, for which she ultimately got suspended. She claims, however, that he is not malicious and in fact "embodies both childlike innocence and the wisdom of an elderly wizard," although he himself is ageless. She also offers to provide free shipping via her imagination, which apparently isn't powerful enough to conjure up an imaginary friend in "Excellent" condition, as Bernard's status is listed merely as "Very Good."
Alas, we will not know what has happened to Bernard, because the item is no longer listed on Ebay, and links go to a page stating "This listing has been removed, or this item isn't available."
Although no official statement has been issued by eBay as to the details, the company has a policy against the sale of "intangible items or items whose existence cannot be verified on receipt of them, such as ghosts, souls, or spirits," which was enforced in 2010 when a UK man tried to sell a ghost, complete with a jar he claimed was the spirit's home. Upon the listing's removal an eBay spokesperson stated, "While we fully appreciate that the item was listed in good spirit, it unfortunately breaches our policy on intangible items."
This all seems just as well. After reading her listing, it appears the woman's psychiatrist has possibly been premature in deeming the woman emotionally stable, and perhaps she might be better off holding on to Bernard for a while.