I use the SDMB often to figure out “Am I alone in feeling this way?” This post is no exception. Please read and let me know if this is just a strange quirk or serious problem.
I’ve been very addicted to Final Fantasy XI after I lost my job in February. I’ve met some truly fascinating people in this game, but one person stands out amongst the rest. I’ll call her “Beth” in the slight chance she might be a Doper. Anyway, I seem to have a problem where I need to be this person’s absolute best friend in the game, or it’s not good enough. Here’s the story:
We met several months ago in a particular hunting area in the game, and we were the same level. We liked working together so much that we agreed to always party together from now on (leveling up in the game doesn’t really work unless you have five other people in your “party”). She was so nice and it looked like I was going to make a really good friend.
Immediately, things were getting weird. She didn’t respond when I would send her tells (FFXI lingo for sending a message to one person only), saying that she keeps her text window maximum at two lines and she misses messages because of battle spam. I suggest she ups the maximum on her text window, and she agrees. She doesn’t miss any more tells from me.
So she and I are talking a week later or so, and she’s complaining about her linkshell (a linkshell is like a private chat room that you can only access if you’re given a “linkpearl” by a senior linkshell member. You could call it a clan, guild, or whatever MMORPG term you want to add to it). She was in this giant linkshell that accepted anyone who asked for a linkpearl. She said she was sick of the beggars and idiots in it. I told her if she ever decides to leave, she’s welcome to mine, since I’m the leader of a very nice and stable one. She says that sounds like a good proposition, and she’ll join mine if she leaves hers.
The next thing I notice is that she’s already four levels above me. I ask her why she went ahead and leveled without me. She didn’t answer that question, only to say that she would now sit at that level and wait for a friend of hers and I to catch up. Needless to say, she stayed at that level for about two days and resumed her leveling, widening our gap.
At this point we’ve done things together in the game a handful of times. A higher-level linkshell took us both to do a rank mission, which we had fun doing.
Fast forward a month. Square-Enix had just implemented a ten-hour maintenance update at which time we weren’t allowed to enter the game. I’m one of the first people back in, and I catch her in the main city. She’s about 10 levels above me and wearing a new linkpearl. I asked her about the linkpearl and she responded, “Oh, I needed a linkshell that had high enough players to help me with things.” This linkshell is of course the one that took us on the rank mission. What a slap in the face. She levels without me, then breaks her promise again because she’s now too high-level with me?
Now, due to her level and extreme popularity among people in the game, she’s grown distant and honestly, fairly egotistical. She DOES pop into my linkshell quite often and is friends with the people in there. But I have to get all this off my chest. So I ask if I can talk to her a few minutes. I tell her I’ve felt like she turned her back on me. She told me that she wanted to level quickly to do the high-level-only stuff in the game. I told her my feelings on the linkshell, and she said she’ll try to be in there much more often. I asked her about growing distant, and she told me that about the time she met me, she was friends with this other guy who started asking her all sorts of weird real-life personal questions. She said she withdraws from people now to avoid that again.
So, thinking things will be a little better, we say good-bye for the night. But they’re not better.
The real pain came when she came into our linkshell and announced that she was getting married in the game. Huh? What? I didn’t even know you were talking to any guy. You know, I never had thought about having an in-game relationship or marriage with her, but this made me sick with jealousy.
One thing she’s always been in the game is very helpful to others. She spends all of her time either leveling up or helping people with their own things. She’s helped me a lot, but refuses to ever let me return the favor.
I was given a linkpearl to her main linkshell, and access to their message boards. The way she talks to her friends in there is NOT the way she talks to me. She jokes with them, laughs, and is very extroverted around them. Around me or anyone else, she’s friendly, but sort of has a shell and remains distant. I ask her why she doesn’t treat me this way, doesn’t accept help from me, especially when she complains that her own linkshell doesn’t help her with her own things. To sum up the discussion, she basically asks, “Why does everybody want to own me?” I ask her why she allowed this other guy to get close to her and not me. She said when she was depressed, he kept sending her little trinkets and stuff that made her laugh. If only I had known. The worst thing is that the only way to really see her is if I ask her for help with something. The aforementioned discussion came from when she announced on the linkshell that she’s bored. I told her to come hang out with me, I’ll keep her from being bored. She responded “Hmmm?” and logged off. This isn’t the first time. What a slap in the face.
So to sum it up, I look up to her and am jealous of her at the same time. I’m not in love with her, but I think about her a LOT, even when I’m not playing. I guess what I really want is her respect and admiration. I want her to treat me like I’m one of her best friends in the game. She tells me I AM one of her best friends, but everything I said above tells me otherwise.
Is something wrong with me? Why am I bordering on the obsessed with this individual? Why do I care so much what she thinks about me? Why do I want to be her friend so badly? I don’t feel this way about ANYONE else in the game, nor am I like this in real life. One more thing I should add is that I myself am quite popular in the game, and many, many people open up the most private parts of their life to me. I don’t ask for it; they just do it. Maybe I’m upset that Beth won’t. I dunno.
Any advice or thoughts would be greatly appreciated. Thanks, guys.