...and I'm back in the game!
Play the peaceful variant. It is part of the official rules and solves your whole problem. So....do it.
I've read about the Peaceful Variant, but I'm really more interested in playing the game per normal rules.
It's okay if there's some confrontation and an ability to negatively effect the other player(s) as long as it's not the main focus of gameplay. I don't own the game and I'm not really interested in purchasing it just to play a variant (whether it's in the official rules or not).