Love, HUDs, And Other Drugs…(Pt. 1)

Is there something that you’ve spent your entire life wanting? Yearning for? Dreaming of? Praying, wishing, and hoping for?

You would do just about anything to get it. Sometimes, however, your only option is to muster every ounce of patience you can and wait; not everything that you want is within easy reach and ready for the taking.

“In RL, at the age of fourteen, I remember vividly crying in my bed at night, knowing that I would never naturally become a father. This was my ultimate dream, and has continued to be so throughout my life. “

Of course, modern science is far more advanced than what it used to be, but it’s never going to be as simple as ‘boy meets girl, fall in love, make love, have kids, live happily ever after’. Thousands of pounds and test tubes will help me to become a father and reach my life-long dream, but at the back of my mind, I couldn’t shake the feeling that this method made me feel inadequate as a man. Whoever she is, I wish that I could give my future wife a baby without the hefty price tag and invasive medical procedures. But it’s not possible. At least, in RL it’s not…

A decent selection of pregnancy HUDs available in Second Life enables you to conceive and carry a baby, including labour and delivery. I have personally looked into three brands; Deciduan, Pooterbilt, and Mama Allpa; all of which have products including the HUDs on Marketplace. But I have found Mama Allpa by YT Recreant to be the most realistic and desirable to my preferences.

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I can only really give my experience from the male HUD side of things, and all I know is that the female HUD is confusing…well, to me at least! So, your blue symbol is present at all times while you’re wearing it; the pink symbol will appear when a female wearing her HUD is within range. Interaction between the HUDs is easy and simple; very straight forward. Naturally, you do have to think of etiquette when using them; it’s not exactly all that polite to go up to someone you’ve only just met and expect her to accept the ‘coupling’. In fact, you’re more likely to go ahead and piss someone off…unless you’re in somewhat specific RP areas…

Either way, I knew what I always wanted my HUD for and, as outlined above, I had no idea how I was going to do this. I had been waiting for the right woman to come along and fall head over heels for her. Having kids wasn’t my primary concern to be honest, though this is what I hoped would come to pass, and to find someone in Second Life who wanted kids also, would be a difficult task.

The prospect of families in SL is usually brothers and sisters and parents of grown children as opposed to starting completely from fresh, and those who want the ‘start from scratch’ approach are a bit of a dying breed. (No pun intended).

I had been on dates and hung around flirting but it never seemed to amount to anything. I did, however, enter into two semi-serious relationships over the course of two years. Both ended catastrophically badly with both of them cheating on me. And as someone who puts their all into relationships, it broke me. The final hurt caused me to take a four month break from Second Life and it was only the fact that I missed my friends so much that encouraged me back in. My brother was there to greet me and I couldn’t have been more grateful. I had been so worried about returning and that perhaps these painful memories would override my need to be amongst friends, but he was there for me and I was instantly hooked again.

Time passed and I grew weary about the fact that I wanted to become a father. I started looking into the many different options including adopting. I decided to keep all options open and filled out the application form at Heritage for my board. I set it all up and kept my fingers crossed for any child that was willing to give a guy a shot at being a single father.

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I was shocked and devastated though to find that many people’s opinions on single males wanting to become a parent in Second Life are somewhat negative. Unfortunately, as with anywhere on the internet, there are those who pose a risk to children, and SL is no exception, hence the age restricted registration to become a member. Rest assured that Linden Labs are extremely vigilant in enabling users to report abuse of any kind to them using the appropriate form within the viewer and tackle it head on.

But this negative view on men who want to become fathers? What in the HELL? For a start, women are also equally capable of the above so why is that so gender specific? That thought in itself made me angry, but to know that this is what some may think of me while trying to adopt was more than I could bear. I was longing to be a father and now I had this absurd blanket idea to be aware of and prepare myself for should it come to a confrontation of some kind.

Not all men are monsters! Same applies to women! Bad experiences or fears does not justify condemning innocent individuals without fair cause.

First time positive experiences are exhilarating and you’re unlikely to find the same rush when you relive them and therefore, I was not prepared to have my own tarnished in any way. I removed my board from Heritage a short while later and looked into prim babies.

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I didn’t have to search for very long when I found Zooby. I educated myself on them and was well aware of the costs, current and future. I wanted the full RP of caring for my children which is exactly what Zooby could offer me, along with all their furniture, care items, and toys which can be found in their main store, including the wide choice of babies themselves. I found it amazing that they would grow over time and you could ’stage them up’ with four kinds of stars; Deluxe, Premium, Standard, and Generic. The Deluxe offers a one day stage and will grow within a 24 hour period, while the Generic is seven days. Each stage brings a knew skill, usually displayed with a sound or movement. The objects they interact with also change as they grow. For example, the pram that you push them around in shifts from them being carried as a newborn, positioned in an additional seat facing you, to sitting in the pram upright by themselves, and facing forwards.

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I was incredibly happy with my son and daughter, Johnny and Eowyn, but over time, I knew there was something missing. I wanted that loving relationship between a mother, a father, and their kids. I had missed out on the pregnancy, I had missed out on the birth. I had missed out on having a wife to share all of this with. I had missed out on doting on the mother of my children. Regardless of how much I believed that although I didn’t make them, I was still the father of my kids, I wanted more. And I knew that Second Life could offer me that. And as impatient as I am, I knew that I was going to have to wait…..

E.C.

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