I spent some time recently trying out things online that I had never
tried before. I was lonely, and decided to send thoughts out into the
cyberuniverse to see what would come back. Later on, I also tried
Second Life, but I will get to that in a while.
It was good to explore new areas of the internet. I checked out a
support group and for a while posted a significant amount, I created
a couple of dating profiles, I posted for a while in Yahoo Comments
(where the general public comment on various news and pseudonews
articles), I did a small amount of chatting, I acquired a Facebook
account, a few gmail accounts, I acquired an ebay account, a Paypal
account. I did have positive experiences, but I am still left with
the feeling that I need to talk to someone, and there is no one it is
appropriate for me to talk to. I continue to write a lot on a daily
basis, and this kind of writing comes easily. It seems too difficult
to figure out how to prune it all down and add more of it to my site.
I created various new aliases, and made an effort to 'be myself' in
different settings. I didn't use or refer to the name Xesce, and I
chose names that wouldn't be easy to link with the identity
It was partly related to my conclusion that as Xesce I had now
disclosed more info about myself than anyone was comfortable with. It
had been necessary to go through the process, but I realized that
what had been necessary might now be preventing others from
contacting me. So, I tried to simplify. I tried to start over without
all of the baggage in the way.
I was able to communicate, and I did find that I have a 'voice'. I
have changed, developed over time, although I am still fairly
similar in the overall sense. I can articulate some things I didn't
know how to before. But..
What I found was that I experienced a level of anxiety I hadn't in a
long time. I felt constantly nauseous, and often as the night would
wear on, I would find myself shaking uncontrollably. I didn't
experience sweating or stomach pain as I did in the past, but my
reactions were a lot more intense than they had been in a very long
I found it extremely difficult to work out how to be myself while not
oversharing, or purposely concealing.
I realized that part of my anxiety related to my fear others would
discover that I was 'Xesce'. I had spent so many years facing fear
over and over in trying to discuss various aspects of who I am, in
putting new entries on my website, and in my communications with
others, and now I was suddenly afraid that the new people I was
encountering would discover I was this 'monster', Xesce. I tried to
think about it, what this meant. Was it because I realized that as
Xesce, people don't like me or respect me? And since people seemed to
be responding positively to me with different names, without knowing
all the details, I wanted to hold on to that? But there was no way I
could do that indefinitely. The more I communicated, the more
searchable I was likely to make myself. And besides that, I would
eventually have to purposely avoid and conceal in order to maintain
the impressions others might have had of me. I felt boxed in, and I
felt like I had gone back 'into the closet'. If people liked me, it
was probably not based on anything real, and in time, I would reveal
the self that has driven everyone else away. I decided to just give
When I made a decision to stop all of these activities, the
I am not sure that was the right way to go about things. I probably
should have outed myself as Xesce, and faced the fear that the new
people I encountered would not like me if they knew me
Maybe the main difference this time around was that I no longer felt
I had a motivation or incentive to bear with the anxiety. In the
past, I would often connect the feelings of anxiety to sexual
attraction, and probably the underlying motivation for hanging in
there was that I would have a sexual release or relationship. But,
over time, for a very long time, I have had no release.
I should clarify that. Intellectually, I think I appreciate the
relationships I have had, and think I have learned a lot. And though
I haven't felt understood, and I haven't connected sexually or
emotionally in the ways I wanted, I think the efforts at
communication have helped me to understand myself and others better.
it's better to keep trying to communicate than not.
But I think there is another part of me that says it's a completely
hopeless situation, and that there is no use in trying.
Anyway, I might try again to get out there, but it is difficult to
shake off the impression that I am just killing time while rubbing
salt in the wound. Many years ago (2004), I wrote:
i do feel like i want to have someone to talk to, or be with,
or something, and like i want to be comforted, held, but it's like i
don't feel i have the energy to cope with all the stress that might
make it possible to find someone, and it seems unlikely anyone is
going to approach me for some time, maybe a very long time, maybe no
one will ever attempt communication with me again, and if they do,
maybe i've completely lost the ability to adapt, or through the years
i've continued to mutate in directions that make it impossible to
find enough common ground with anyone.
it seems simple enough, though. i have a place here, where i can talk
if i want to talk, when i'm ready. it does seem that as time goes on
my options are shrinking, and that my potential for coping with new
interactions is also shrinking, and that i may have to retreat
further and further into myself, and realize that i'm not really
coming back out. in a way, i do like that i can come here, at least,
to describe that as it's happening, if i want to, if i have the
I was talking about my website. This is the place where I can
describe the truth of the situation, if I have the energy. And people
can look or look away, whatever they want.
When I joined Second Life, I did choose the username xesce. On SL,
you can choose different display names, but it is possible for anyone
to see your username if they want to. A (display) name I came up
with but didn't use for my new avatar was: Nova Mnemonic. I was going
for a kind of scifi feel, but also I was trying to link a few ideas,
and maybe search for a new way of unlocking old memories and/or
linking new ones.
I had managed to walk, run, fly, teleport and shop (for freebies)
before attending my first tutorial. The most fun I had was something
I discovered accidentally. In one world, while I was trying to work
out how to jump into a pose ball (pose balls offer drop down menus
of sexual acts it is possible to perform), someone asked me if it
was ok if they animated me. I said yes, and my avatar began dancing.
Not long after, a male avatar came over to me and our avatars
danced very smoothly together - it was really quite well done. From
this, I could imagine that having sex in Second Life could also
work quite well.
After I left that world, I went into another one where I was chased
by zombies, but instead of running, I tried to dance with a female
one. Interestingly, it was like something in the programming there
picked up keystroke attempts, and then animated both me and the
zombie to continue dancing without me having to do anything. Then
a couple more zombies joined in and I found it quite amusing.
I tried to undress my avatar to find out what the naked situation
was and if I would have to go find some genitals and nipples
somewhere. I had managed to find a demo female shape that was
anatomically correct, but because it was only a demo I couldn't keep
it for free. And besides, it had really big feet which I didn't
think were proportional, and I had a bitch of time getting my
editing to stick.
As far as sex, I am still a Second Life virgin. I don't know if I
want my first time to be special, or I expect it to be awkward, but
at present I don't feel up to shopping for the necessary parts and
so I'm giving things a bit of time.
Oh, there was one embarrassing thing: I didn't realize I had voice
activated. I don't have a microphone, and didn't realize the default
setting would automatically set up the built-in microphone to
work, until one time on my travels someone said to me that they
could hear me breathing and clicking, and it sounded like I was
really annoying.. anyway, I just signed out, but the next day
changed my settings, once I had recovered to some extent.
Below are images of the original avatar I started with on Second
Life. One of my first priorities was to change the appearance as
quickly as possible. The original is pretty, but I didn't want one
that a million others also had. The other photos on this page
represent what I was able to achieve on my own, for free. It's not
that I'm against having a premium account or spending money, it's
that I'm not a gamer, I'm not particularly good at this kind of
thing, and I wanted to test how well I could do on my own. If I go
back in, I will have to again change my appearance, because I have
realized that my avatar, while different from the original, now seems
to bear a resemblance to Winona Ryder. This wasn't intentional, it
was just me mucking around with the editing software trying to come
up with something different and not having a great deal of control
over the process. (I like Winona, but feel uneasy about accidentally
copying her). I will have to try again if I want to come up with a
more original avatar.
Anyone wishing to contact me on Second Life might have better luck
emailing me - I haven't signed in to SL for a while and am not sure
when or if I will go back.
My adventures in cyberspace have shown me some of the possibilities
and have inspired some creative ideas. And yet.. I still give up
fast. It seems impossible for me to connect.