Some have fallen in love and gone on to marry their partners in WoW crime. Some have been bitten by love when it finds them in the virtual world. Some choose not to get involved in relationships in game, because it “isn’t real” or is too difficult. Even if it isn’t romantic love, there is love in WoW if you allow it to be there.
Over the few years of playing the game, I have made friends, become intensely close with them, drifted apart, sometimes drifted back together, some have never returned. I have fallen madly, deeply and passionately in love with a fellow gamer. I have had that love reciprocated, and I have had it fall on deaf ears. I have met a select few IRL, and fallen even more madly in love or drifted away from those.
Just like any relationship, these encounters sometimes end in tears, sometimes in mutual distant friendship, sometimes in bitter hatred.
“I’ve been burnt so bad, but I still play with fire.”-lyrics from I Won’t Tell You by Lacuna Coil
This is how I view relationships, whether they be friendships or true love. No matter how difficult it is when someone says goodbye, no matter how painful a break up, there will always be another friend or lover.
It wasn’t easy for me to come to this point. For a long time I wallowed in self loathing and self doubt. I thought it must be my fault they left the game or didn’t want me.
My traipse across realms and types of play style has brought me back to where I started, but with a little more wisdom than I had before.
Just as I have changed what I want to do in game, so do others. I cannot fault my friends for leaving me behind when they have changed how they want to play. Nor should I fault myself for not changing with them.
My advice to any who play this massively multiplayer online game, is to open yourself up, let people in. You may get hurt, but every heart you open your heart to teaches your heart a little something about love.