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Ronaiah Tuiasosopo

Intense Feelings For

Manti Te'o

1/24/2013 11:00 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF
EXCLUSIVE

0124_ronaiah_article_tmz
Ronaiah Tuiasosopo
had intense feelings for Manti Te'o ... feelings that developed over time that he channeled through a female persona, but the emotions -- like the scam -- were rooted in fantasy.

Sources very close to Ronaiah tell TMZ ... he struggled for years trying to adapt to the expectations of his culture, his religion and his family.  Ronaiah, we're told, never had a serious physical relationship with anyone and created a female persona online as a way to vent his feelings.

We're told Ronaiah used the female persona in many encounters, but so far there's no evidence he became intensely emotionally attached to anyone -- until Manti.  We've confirmed when Ronaiah spoke with Manti as "Lennay Kekua" he used his own voice.

Indeed ... Ronaiah's feelings became so intense, he blew his cover on December 6 because it was hard to walk away.  He never intended to reveal Manti was actually talking to a man ... he just wanted to reconnect with Manti, but still as a woman. 

Our sources say Ronaiah has buried his feelings to the point he has little emotion about anything.  We're told even the scandal has not produced intense emotions. 

We're told, Ronaiah shut down emotionally at a very young age.  He lived his life through fantasy.

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115 COMMENTS

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46.

BUOOBEES    

WHO NEW TMZ HAD PSYCHOLOGISTS ON STAFF

455 days ago
47.

SC Girl    

Being gay hasn't ever sounded as bad as all the bullsh!t stories Manti keeps runnin with...Geezus dude we know you're gay, and we don't care.....

455 days ago
48.

Meg    

Clearly Manti isn't gay... He thought ronaiah was a woman. Fine he lied after dec 6 but this guy is admitting he lied. Why would someone admit to a scam they didn't do? And as for all of u urging Manti to come out and be who he is, u r being stereotypical by assuming he has to be gay. You aren't nearly as open minded as u think u r

455 days ago
49.

Zombie Whitney Houston    

Watch.. this guy is going to end up committing suicide over this dumb story and all the embarrassment it's causing. Good job beating this uninteresting story to death, TMZ.

455 days ago
50.

Toilethead    

I think they're in love.

455 days ago
51.

manbearpig    

that's embarrassing sh!t right there- lol

455 days ago
52.

sarah    

What the f---

455 days ago
53.

Davis    

Maybe they can have a happy ending and get married now.

455 days ago
54.

debi t    

Ronaiah obviously endured some horrific trauma as a small child which caused him to feel the need to escape reality and live life through fantasy roles. Sadly, Manti was his victim this time. Perhaps now, Ronaiah can get the help he so obviously needs before he really hurts someone or someone retaliates on him.
As far as whether either of these 2 are gay: REALLY people? Does it matter? Who cares?

455 days ago
55.

TNastyFunktown    

lol this story keeps getting progressively more bizarre. I wonder how weird it's going to get by the time it's all said and done.

455 days ago
56.

Violent Pope    

Dude displays maximum gayosity.

455 days ago
57.

EasilyHard    

This story stinx like Elton John's jock collection

455 days ago
58.

dale12    

If you watch that program on MTV, Catfish, you "know" that this dude Ronaiah is gay....That's the way the story always turns out, male dude wanting to be a female, contacting straight dudes, imho.

455 days ago
59.

Warren    

I knew there was a gay twrist to this story when I first read about it. I doubt if Manti Te'o is far, far, far away from having some homosexuality feelings but, at this point I won't say that he knew the whole story.

455 days ago
60.

Tray    

Our poor society! People trying to be someone they will NEVER be.

455 days ago
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