Figured I needed a new journal entry, so here’s an issue that was buggin’ me last night.
Old friend of mine wants to RP. Sounds like fun! I try to remember where I still have characters… most of them I’ve abandoned since I don’t have enough time… and more importantly, because I’ve picked up a few hangers-on.
I’m way too social and friendly and polite for my own good. When a complete stranger pages me wanting to play, or just chat, I tend to accommodate. When I agree to RP with them, we usually have a fun time… but then I tend to draw people who obsessively want to play more and more with me.
Every time they’re on they’re expecting to RP with me. When I don’t log in for a day or two they complain that I’m not logging in more and they wanna play more with me. It’s creepy, almost like having a stalker, only a polite and cheerful one who just wants MORE of you. Having a casual friend is one thing but it’s like they assume I’m way more into the friendship than I actually am. Usually I end up ditching the character/MU… not enough time, not enough interest in trying to actively avoid this person. And not enough backbone to tell them to push off when all they want is to have fun and aren’t trying to be mean about it.
Anyway… last night I log in one place to use an old unused character, and lo and behold ten seconds after arriving, there’s that character’s stalker friend paging hello and wondering where I’ve been. I make an excuse that I don’t have much time to play (which is largely true) and log out quickly. I pick a different place to play with said old friend, we do a nice session… and another old flame from the past pages me as I’m about to leave. And this one’s six kinds of guilt because he’s recovering from an accident and just wanted to talk and hadn’t seen me in months and here I wanted to go play Smackdown. I tried a compromise of giving my ICQ number, he doesn’t have ICQ and suggests I install AIM, I don’t WANNA install AIM just for this guy, he suggests I log in more, I say I can’t make any promises and shuffle my way out the door.
This is why when I was in my later college years I refused to RP anywhere without being totally anonymous and tended to change characters a lot. I just want to PLAY, okay? And maybe talk to friends, but not have my ‘friends’ banging down my door wanting me around when I want to do something else! Even creepier are the ones who get really attached AFTER my character is romantic with theirs… look, I’m just RPing here, okay? That’s pushing a line into the Creepy Zone that I don’t want pushed.
A lot of this is guilt on my part, too. I have too many friends and not enough time to divide between them — especially for RP, which is the single most time consuming thing one could do online. It takes HOURS to do anything of good weight and fun, it’s something you pretty much have to dedicate half of your entire evening to at minimum. Even for folks who AREN’T pushy, creepy stalkers, even for normal friends I don’t know how to handle this problem. If I dedicate more time to my friends I have less for other things I want to do, and vice versa, and AAAAAAGH.
As for stalkers… ugh. I really don’t know how to … no, well, I do know. I should say “Quit pushing me, we’re not THAT close, I’m not interested.” But I’m too damned NICE to be that cold to someone. I wish there was a better way than being a harsh bitch or being a distant avoider.
Well, that was rambling. Back to work for me..