I woke up to find an unexpected comment to my article about ERP, waiting to be approved. Since the intent of the comment seems to be to expose me as a hypocrite (?) I might as well go on to explain it all from scratch. Better I give the full picture before the person decides to spread things elsewhere and people jump to conclusions they shouldn’t. If you then think worse of me for it, well then that’s how it is I suppose.
Yes, I have several accounts that have been used for RP. Not just on gw2 but also on TESO. There are two main reasons for this, one being a desperate need for casual RP on an account where no one knew it was me, where I could log on to RP without pressure, without being met by expectations. The other being the wish to play certain characters without having to deal with unpleasant reactions.
When I was a complete noob in the RP world, when I didn’t know anyone and was still trying to learn how the community works, I had an idea for a character. Blue eyed and naive I presented my idea to the RP community on gw2rp: I want to make a prostitute character, I said. Where focus wasn’t on ERP but on exploring the character seriously. Digging into the issues of the darker and less pleasant sides of the IC community.
The following day I had to ask the moderators to delete that forum post. The reactions I got were just too unpleasant, I was accused of OOCly selling erp, basically being a cyber whore, I was told it was immoral and terrible, and that I should be banned.
Saddened by the response I put aside my character idea. I was entirely serious about my RP already as a noob, and did not want to get branded by the community as a cyber whore.
Half a year later
I created a second account. I was still just learning the ropes, getting to know the RP community, and I was still scared that if I created a character that was too provocative I would be slut shamed, shunned by the community and excluded from this amazing hobby I had come to love. So, I made a secondary account for more provocative ideas. For a little while I thus came to play an IC prostitute, casually on the side of my main.
So yes, the initial reason for creating the secondary account was that I wanted to explore provocative characters without being slut shamed and excluded. It quickly became something else though. The Sneaky accounts (I say accounts because it’s not just on gw2!) became my refuge when things were too stressful on my main account, it became the account I would log on to when wanting actual casual RP without expectations. And as such, it was amazing. Suddenly I could log on and go IC without being instantly claimed for this or that, it was quiet, peaceful.
Since then I have used secondary accounts not just to play a prostitute character. I’ve had beggars and pickpockets, low-lives lurking silently at the outskirts of RP, some friendly and some not so friendly. I’ve used Sneaky to venture into other servers and explore RP in other circles, and sometimes to stir up RP where it was unexpected. I’ve played villains created specifically to give good guys someone to hunt down (one especially ended up stirring up a really neat plot over on TESO), and enjoyed having a safe account from which I could just relax.
Today, when I am no longer a scared noob, I am not ashamed of my IC prostitute. Several of my closest RP friends know about the Sneaky account as well, playing that sort of character is not actually something I am scared to admit.
Sadly, to a large extent my initial worries have turned out to be valid. A person playing a character who resorts to anything, including selling her body, can expect ridicule and shaming. Even though I have played my Sneaky accounts just as seriously as my regular main characters, my Sneaky account has been met by quite devastating reactions at times. Slut shaming is real, folks. I am not going to repeat here all the nasty comments and reactions my sneaky account has received just because of the character’s IC profession, but trust me when I say, it’s not pleasant stuff.
I absolutely hate secrecy. I’m also a terrible liar. This has lead to me actually telling a few close RP friends about the Sneaky account over the years, not many have known but a few.
You who this morning decided to out me, to let people know that I have had Sneaky accounts… I can only assume your purpose is to damage my reputation in the RP community. Expose me as a hypocrite maybe? Seeing how I publically have taken a stance against those who would claim ERP is something shameful, yet have kept my prostitute character secret? Well. Had I officially spoken out against ERP and publically been against such ghastly immoral practices, it most certainly would have been hypocritical of me to secretly keep such a character myself. But that isn’t the case. There is no shame here.
I am just sad that you have now taken away my safe haven, my chance to RP without anyone knowing it’s me, without all the pressure and expectations that follow. I’m sad that some may be upset about the secrecy.
To sum it up. I don’t give a fuck about people knowing I have played an IC prostitute. But damn you for deciding to take away my chance at relaxed, casual RP without pressure and expectations.