I never make the same mistake twice. I have always been the type of person to go through a challenging time once, learn some valuable lessons, apply those lessons to my life and move on. I have always considered this to be one of my strongest qualities as a person. This is how i quit smoking, left an abusive relationship, walked away from a job I hated, and went back to school and changed my life. This way of moving through life has also helped me in holding onto something when I know it's a really good thing. This quality has served me well in my life, and the same holds true for SL.
That's why, when it comes to romantic relationships in SL, I can emphatically say, never again will I be involved in one. It's too complicated, and it just hurts too much.
SLove has always been a mystery to me, and even having been there done that, I might have gained some understanding, but I still don't completely "get" it. I think probably the only kind of SL relationship I can kind of, sort of understand are single people looking for RL love, but even that remains somewhat of a mystery to me...well, maybe not so much a mystery but it just seems damn scary. I have two friends who are making the transition from SL to RL in their relationships and I wish them all the best with that. I am truly happy for them.
For married people like me, there are no happy endings for SL relationships. How could there possibly be? Someone is always bound to get hurt, whether it be yourself, or worse someone's RL spouse or children. That is not something I want to be a part of. I consider myself lucky to get out now while my life is still in tact. I count my blessings, and maybe the best thing to come of my whole experience is that I have learned, the not so easy way, to love and appreciate what I already have. No, my marriage is not perfect, but I'm not willing to walk away from it or jeopardize it for some crazy SL fantasy. For those that say they can maintain a RL marriage and a SL relationship...well, all I can say is I am not one of those people. The duality and inner conflict a situation like this brings on for me is just too much to handle, and if I can put a stop to self-inflicting any further emotional pain, then I'm gonna choose to stop it.
I don't even want to get into the much debated about question of "is it cheating or not?", but I'll give you a hint...if it involves lying or hiding something from your spouse or partner, then calling it cheating is not such an unfair assessment. I'll tell you another thing, it's more than cheating on your spouse, it's cheating on yourself. You're cheating yourself out of being really happy in your real life, you're holding yourself back from making things better, you're keeping your life at a standstill. Forgive me if I sound like a new age navel gazer for what I'm about to say, but if you're not going to do something about your unhappiness now, the Universe or the powers that be (or whatever the hell you wanna call it) will do something about it, and chances are it ain't gonna be pretty. You can only carry on a charade like for so long until it implodes on you.
If it sounds like I'm preaching, it's entirely for my own benefit. I'm not writing this to preach to or pass judgement on anyone. We all have our reasons for the choices we make and I am in no position to judge anyone on that. And no, I'm not posting this to draw attention to myself, as someone on my friends list suggested to me. That's just not my style. I don't know the precise reasons why I wanted to post this. Maybe it's because I think there are other people out there who can relate, but mostly it's because writing this here is my way of holding myself accountable to my words...writing as witness.
And so it is, SLove will always remain a mystery to me, and I'm just fine with that. I have no desire or inclination to go back there and try to figure that out. It's not worth it. Instead I choose to love and appreciate my family and everything that I have...in RL.
Ages ago, I wrote in my 1st life profile, "1st life is 1st life, I have a pretty good one". Amen to that! It took me this very emotionally challenging experience to really "get" that very simple, yet hard earned life lesson. But like I said in the beginning, I never make the same mistake twice. Lessons learned, case closed, private i.m history permanently deleted. I won't be needing to go back and review that experience again.