Sunday, February 15, 2015

Fights with Friends

So my best friend... my real life best friend... and I got in a bit of a fight today. Right smack in the middle of an Indian restaurant.

What was it about?

Second Life.
Mind you, we've been besties for well over a quarter of a century, so when I say we got into a fight, it means we had a strong disagreement that came to a heated head, then quickly dissipated when she excused herself from table for a moment and we both shook it off, shared some mango pudding and went on with our day none the worse for wear.

That's what's cool about having a long time best friend. I love her, and she loves me, even though we don't understand each other sometimes.

She knows about Hugh, though we don't talk about him a lot. I know she doesn't understand Second Life... and I can't figure out the words to explain it to her. It's a topic we mostly just avoid but today I said something about spending Valentine's Day with him and how we'd been together for over a year now.

So what caused the fight? She made the mistake of saying that he wasn't real. And what we had wasn't real and that there is no way you can be intimate with someone without actual physical closeness.

She has a lot of trouble with the concept that Hugh and I are completely satisfied and content in the knowledge that we'll never meet in the real world. And she absolutely can't conceive of how any two people can know each other intimately without meeting face to face.
I know she feels this way and I'm not sure why it got under my skin so badly today. I dug my heels in and she dug her heels in. The fight/conversation had a lot of things like this:

Her: Can you hold his hand?
Me: Yes.
Her: NO YOU CAN'T!
Me: Just because you don't understand it doesn't mean it isn't real.
Her: IT'S NOT REAL!
Me: You're being unfair.
Her: How do you know he doesn't have 20 other virtual girlfriends?
Me: I know him. I trust him.
Her: YOU CAN'T!

(She yells... I don't.)
I tried to compare it to people she's friends with on Facebook that she's never met. She still considers them real friends. I said that means she has a relationship with them... she denied it. I don't think she quite understands that intimacy doesn't necessarily mean sexual in nature, though with Hugh, we certainly have that, too.

I'm not sure what to do, and I probably won't do anything. It'll just continue to be a subject we avoid, but that rather pisses me off. Hugh and I certainly don't have a traditional relationship by any stretch of the imagination, but we do have a relationship that we've defined for ourselves and he is hugely important to me. I'd like to be able to share a little of that with my best friend.
I'm tempted to invite her over one night and log on so she can see my world.  See me, my home. Take her to see a live musician. Show her some of the beautiful places people have created. Maybe even meet Hugh.

But I'm not sure I want to share that much of this with her. I just want her to accept that Beth Macbain is a part of me, and Hugh is a part of that, too. And to respect it, which she absolutely doesn't and that bugs the shit out of me. That's what I don't think is fair... that she's just closed her mind to it without having any understanding of it.
Anyway... that's where I am today. Trying to figure out how to blend a little bit of SL with my RL. Maybe it's best just to not even try that.

My bestie is, oddly enough, extremely conservative... politically, religiously. This isn't the first time we've butted heads when I feel like she's being close-minded. It is what it is... and as much as I want her to accept this thing I have going on, I guess I have to accept her for who she is, too. And I usually do.

Today was... just aggravating.

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