My own totally subjective ...non-researched conclusion...is that sl is FULL of people with mental-health problems...this stirs my compassion...but not my desire to wanna get to know you better.
Yeah, well that's one of the Second Life cultural chestnut jokes for a reason, isn't it?
Orfeu and I agree that there seems to be a lot (anecdotally disproportionate even) of people with mental and physical health issues in Second Life, and the virtual world forums attached to Second Life, who are drawn to Second Life and the forums because of a number of reasons, but often because they can do things in Second Life and the forums they cannot do, or cannot do easily, in First Life.
I think Orfeu might agree with me, however, that there are delightful people you meet and happily get to know in Second Life who inform you that they have mental health issues, whether it be bipolar disorder or social anxiety disorder or some kind of gender dysphoria and then there are people who, to put it in crass layman's language born out of frustrated experience, are batshit fucking crazy and toxic as hell who you do not want to get near with a ten-meter-pixel pole, let alone get to know. It's like the example Cody and Orfeu and I discussed earlier about the profile with the likes and dislikes. There's a qualitative difference in tone and effect that makes all the difference.
The realization, again, I know I'm speaking anecdotally, that there was such a significant mental health component to virtual worlds and their forums, got me really interested in that teeth-in, curiosity kind of way. I'm fascinated. I've done a lot of layman's research on the subject and have done some exploration in Second Life with that sole interest in mind. Orfeu, for example, directed me to a place in Second Life in which, not only could you read about schizophrenia, but you could "experience" it through the scripted activities you could try. I've got some screen shots and links. I'll bring 'em over and post 'em. Anyway, I obviously have a lot more to say on this subject. So you know what's coming.
At any rate, one thing I do want to be clear about, is that I'm not driven to reduce my sphere of friends and acquaintances to those with "perfect" physical and mental health. One, that would be impossible and two, it would be foolish and I would miss out on so much. I do, however, have a healthy radar for toxicity and I have a healthy sense of self-preservation.
Repost. LeeHere Absent, Mar 5, 2011 http://gotvirtual.net/community/threads/thats-what-she-said.772/page-20#post-31121