Originally Posted by CConn
I think what happened was, after their deaths, Bruce considered his time as Batman a failure, and instead tried to do good as Bruce Wayne. So he poured his heart and soul into this project in hopes of improving the human condition.
When it was revealed that this effort could be corrupted and twisted into something evil - much like the Joker twisted and corrupted the concept of dual personas - Bruce lost all faith in himself to ever accomplish something truly successful and good.
It's actually rather deep now that I think about it. And, again, ties even more into the idea of Batman as a symbol, and people's ability to draw strength from such a symbol and concept.
For eight years tho? No. A year. Yeah. A couple. Maybe. I just have a hard time believing Bruce would become a recluse for eight years. Actually I have a hard time believing anyone would do that, let alone Bruce. Perhaps I should blame alfred for letting him stew. It was the butler's fault as usual.
Going back to the problem with no one discovering Bruce is Batman but Blake. Bruce, who is a major figure in gotham, conveniently disappears from life when Batman disappears.