Monday, September 14, 2009


I was away from SL yesterday. For the whole day. And it bothered me. Now, in itself that's not a bad thing. But when it makes me grumpy in RL and that ends up affecting those around me perhaps it is.

Now I kinda now what's making me feel this way, and why I want to be in SL almost every spare moment I have, but that's really not what this post is about.

It's more about the emotions we feel in RL as a result of SL. The other day I had someone try to tell me again that SL is just a game. But if it's a game then why does it affect our RL emotions so dramatically?

I mean, as a result of SL I have experienced a whole gamut of emotions. The full emotional spectrum if you will - from red, through yellow and green, to blue. And maybe some pink. I've felt joy, happiness, contentment, affection, longing, lust, surprise, amusement, awe, sadness, disappointment, irritation, anger, guilt, jealousy, rejection. I am sure that anyone reading this has felt most of those and more besides.

What I can't answer though is, for me (and me alone here, as I know that everyone is different and has different RL and SL situations) is it right for SL to impact my RL in such a way?


  1. i think i could have written this same exact post. i had someone tell me today that it's just a game...i can't think of anything that can minimize a person's feelings more than saying "it's just a game". i just can't seem to fit my feelings into a neat little package like that, no matter how hard i've tried.

    on a good day, i feel like sl enhances my rl somehow and i feel super. on a bad day, it feels like maybe sl affects my rl too much and i just feel horrible.

    anyways, i don't know what my point is here, but i'm feeling your sentiments. hope you're feeling better soon.

  2. I know that in the early days with Karl I couldn't stop smiling after chatting on Gtalk with him during my morning break in between classes. It elevated my mood a lot and made me so happy, and I always looked forward to chatting with him. If we didn't get to chat, my day would feel 'flat' somehow.

    I kinda see SL as another circle in which I move, much like you'd have your circle of colleagues, former schoolmates, relatives, neighbours, childhood friends, and so on. If my relationships with people in those circles affect me and my "RL", then so too will SL affect me and my RL -- emotions & all. It just is, no right or wrong to it.

    The only thing that's different is that we tend to apply different boundaries in our SL compared to what we would when we move in the other circles. Why? Coz it feels different and is like moving away from normal points of reference, I guess. I think I gotta think about this more and blog it!


  3. I think I have finally figured out what SL is to me...not a game, not a virtual world but a community. Yes, this community of people or things can impact my feelings in RL. The people stuff is too personal and I won't get into it here but I have spent many times trying to learn some new gadget in SL that would frustrate the hell out of me and then I would have to get off the computer still fuming in RL because of the stupid little gadget that I couldn't figure out!

  4. I think we all have been through the emotions and feelings you describe here. And when something bad happens to me in SL ofcourse it effects my RL. Is that wrong? Nope, because we all are people behind the avatar, people with real feelings and emotions.
    There was a time not so long ago I thought I should leave SL because it was kinda taking over my RL, but thruth is I simply can't, because all the people I know in SL I love as much as the people I know in RL.
    Bottomline we are not robots, we have no button that can switch our feelings on and off. Everything we do or say in SL will effect our RL and vice versa.
    How to deal with that? I honestly don't know but I will continue my SL like I do now, I just love it and the people in it too much to leave it.
    So you are not the only one with these questions in your head:-)
    Take care!!

  5. Coming from a diehard MMORPG uber-geek, I can say with some authority that SL is NOT a game.

    Warcraft is a game. Aion is a game. Both have taken up way too much of my freaking time in the past year (Aion just in the past 48 hours..thank God the open beta is over and I have a respite until the release date).

    Games have objectives and end points (or expansion packs *rolls eyes*). SL has neither. You make of it what you will. Granted if my BF acts like an ass while we're questing in Warcraft it can (and does) affect me in RL because I know him in RL.

    I may not know many of my SL friends (not that I have many of them to begin with), but they (and you, lovely Marnix) are more than just people I need to help me kill nasty monsters. We make friends in MMORPGs to help us with quests and leveling. We make friends in SL in the more organic RL way (if we're being sincere anyway...Lindendiggers are an exception).

    I've been hurt in SL, but nowhere near as bad as RL has sometimes hurt me. I feel all the same RL emotions, but there's a bit of a buffer provided by not truly knowing most people in SL like I know my RL friends. I brought my own RL friends into the game (all 3 of

    Does SL impact my RL? Hell yes... I work long hours and I don't do the bar scene. When I'm not traveling to concerts or out rambling around in nature to do my RL photography, when I'm not Warcrafting (or Aioning now -.-), SL is where I go, but it does not affect my daily life in a negative way (other than it sometimes distracts me from work OOPS!). It's a refuge or respite from RL, but not a replacement.

    I think some people in SL have a hard time dealing with the Vegas syndrome: "What happens in SL stays in SL."

    As for anything else I have to say, I'll send you a private plurk. ;)

  6. It's so not a game...(( HUGS )) I have so much more to say but the kind friends above said most of it...

    RL & SL do mix. You'll find what words for you and makes you happy. Just take your time and go at your pace in doing so.

    See isn't nice to know you are so loved. Friends ROCK!

  7. Man, you guys are all so amazing. Thank you for caring enough to comment and give me kind and encouraging words and share you own views and stuff.

    It means a lot


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