Archive for Alts

Honestly Sometimes I Can’t Take It

Posted in Op/Ed with tags , , , , , on November 25, 2008 by hawksrock

I have a wide group of friends, acquaintances, and contacts in all of my worlds and endeavors.   They cross a wide range of classifications on any scale, but I do require one absolute trait to be present at all times.   This trait is honesty.   I can take tough feedback, I can accept that we all have flaws and make mistakes from time to time, but if you are the kind of person who tries to cover it up or deny things outright, then I absolutely refuse to have anything to do with you.    I do not equate full disclosure with a prerequisite for honesty, because I believe that we are entitled to our mistakes of the past, and to the extent that they do not impact our present, then they are best left alone.    We can debate what honesty means until we are blue in the face.   This is a discussion which I would love to have, and I will probably tackle this topic in a future post.   At this point though I want to address a particular type of dishonesty.

The whole online world of anonymity offers layers upon layers of deceit for the right type of individual.   There are a lot of assholes, but let me say that there is one in particular that is unusually dangerous.   He is the kind that doesn’t come into your life acting all bad ass and asshole-like from the beginning.   He is the kind that is witty, charming, funny, and preys upon your loneliness.    He will build you up, and pull you into a web of ever growing sympathy.    He will be there for you when things are bad, and offer you a shoulder to cry on.    He will relate to everything negative you have going on in your life.    He will play the part of a victim, and say that he too has been wronged in his life.

The thing you will not be aware of is that he is a complete and total sham.    He is hiding you from his SO, and will one day be found out.    He will then disappear from your life, but only to reappear a few months down the line in another identity with another woman, and the cycle begins anew.    In some cases, he will just kill one alt, to keep going with another which is already moving in on his next prey.   She will construct a fantasy world in which anyone who tries to point out any flaws will be shut out.   She doesn’t realize that she is not the first, nor the last, but she will at some point be another victim tossed to the curb.   A thrill of the moment, and then the moment is passed, or else busted by the truth.

At some point things will catch up with him, and the SO will give up on him, and he will be free to move beyond an alt status into something more with this flame of the moment.    She will be excited, until the pattern completes itself and she finds herself as the SO discovering alts down the road.  Once you have a pattern, most people do not break out of that pattern, until they realize they are wrong and take a serious hard look at themselves.

How are we as a virtual society ever going to combat this type of predator?   I think we have to speak up, and say our minds.   If our friend is willing to dump us because we care enough to broach the topic, then that is not a very solid friendship.   The fact is that we all know people or of people who are running multiple alts for the sole purpose of hiding activities which they would not want discovered by their SO.   If any of your friends, take up with this individual, then you are obliged to call it out.   Throw it out there, and if they don’t listen, then at the very least you don’t have to play the sympathy card on down the road when things turn out for the worse.   Maybe, just maybe, you will actually keep someone from getting hurt.

** If you are reading this and you think it applies to you, then it probably does but I will honestly say that I know many such instances of this type of thing and drew from multiple examples when thinking through it.