I want to talk about sex and love. But I’m not really sure how to approach the topics. I want to talk about sex in SL. I want to talk about love in general – FL and SL. I don’t know that the subjects actually need to be dealt with in the same blog at all. Heaven knows there are a million blogs out there already dealing with SL relationships. And billions dealing with relationships in general. But I don’t care – I’m going to venture here myself. The topics seem to have come up a lot recently.
It’s probably easier to start with sex. Let’s put aside the people who go to SL specifically for sex – for a different way to access porn. That seems fairly straight-forward to me. Real flesh & blood people having sex also seems understandable to me as well. 🙂 I want to talk about why people who are in SL for reasons other than porn engage in sex. (Obviously I am talking about the avatars here, but since there are real people behind the avatars, I’m not going to keep clarifying or differentiating.) WHY??? What does it signify? Is it just a form of titillation for self and partner? And so falls more into the “SL is for porn” category? Or are people trying to signify something different?
I met a very nice person the other night. We were both sitting on the benches, chatting with the group. We ended up IM’ing and chatting for quite awhile. He was pleasant, witty, well-spoken – a nice guy. And an attractive appearance as well. Do NOT ask me why I even mention that – I have no idea. Probably habit left over from RL. Because I certainly have found that some of the people I like the most in SL do not always look exactly, ummm, how should I say it?, standard-human. I liked him, I was having fun chatting. And we were flirting. He kept inviting me to join him, hinting of intimacy and such. (Was that vague enough to keep my PG rating???) 🙂 I told him no. I told him no, not tonight. I told him meeting him somewhere was certainly a possibility sometime, but not tonight. We must have had about 6 or 7 iterations of this conversation. So besides wanting to know why people ARE having sex in SL, I am also interested in the fact that I seem to have all my RL values intact even in a world where perhaps they don’t apply or aren’t necessary. Maybe this is another anomaly for me. Lots of people like to have non-human avatars and that didn’t “work” for me. Maybe everyone is out there making like bunnies, too, except me.
So putting aside “SL is for porn”, WHY?? Is sex in SL an attempt to communicate a deeper feeling for another person, and since RL methods (side glances, smiles, moving closer, body language) don’t work, people jump immediately to a behaviour that signifies that deeper emotion? Is sex so prevalent because people CAN? None of the RL fears exist: no disease, no hurt, no embarrassment of exposing yourself. Is it the lack of physical constraints that makes sex so prevalent? Is it because it actually means nothing? That having sex in SL is no more than shaking hands saying “Hi, How are you?” ?? What is it that people are trying to communicate when they have sex?
Love. Maybe this should be a different blog. But after a conversation with a friend, I started really thinking about what it means to “fall in love”. Obviously people are falling in love left and right, in SL and RL. What struck me, however, was the difference in terminology that appeared when people talked about “falling in love”. Here is my totally unscientific poll: 2 males said “falling in love is exhiliarating”. 2 females said “falling in love is scary and makes you vulnerable”. I probably need a larger sample group. 🙂 I’m sure that 4 people is not statistically significant. Somehow I just don’t see myself walking about asking all my friends, neighbors and co-workers to tell me what “falling in love” means to them. And obviously more than one word applies. But the women said vulnerable FIRST and the men said exciting FIRST. Actually – neither male ever said vulnerable. So – I have no idea if anyone is reading this or not, or if you’re reading but don’t want to answer, but that’s my question to YOU: What does falling in love mean to you? Pick a word or supply your own words: exhiliarating, scary, vulnerable, hot, caring. Use several words. But WHICH word do you put FIRST?