"Rezbian" is Kit Meredith's elegant term for a phenomenon I've meant to write about for quite some time: women who are heterosexual in real life, but partnered with another female avatar in Second Life. (Or if you care for a cleverer definition: girls who like boys who like girls who like boys.) Recently, Kit explored it from her personal vantage, so I should let her have the floor:
I’m straight in RL. I’ve never even had one of those college “experimental periods” or anything. I’m a firm believer in the notion that our sexualities are hard-wired into our brains... But, here I am, romantically involved with a woman in SL.
Kit's totally comfortable enjoying that paradox, but she's also curious why it's so prevalant. After all, as she notes, lesbian couples in SL are disproportionately common, compared to their real world numbers. Why? She suggests a few explanations:
- SL is perceived as gay-friendly, and consequently, there are likely more homosexuals in Second Life, than other online worlds.
- SL offers a safe place for straight women to experiment and play with their sexuality.
- In many lesbian couples, one of them is actually a man in real life. ("[S]ome [men] are playing a female avie for the express purpose of getting into a lesbian relationship for the free virtual porn. Others may have chosen a female persona for exploratory or other reasons, and are simply attracted to women, just like they are in real life.")
But none of these describe her personal motivations, Kit continues, for she has her own:
[I]t has to be the absence of the physical in SL that makes the difference. For me, a lot of the attraction to men in RL is
based on physical elements - there’s just a sense of protection, of
being safe, that comes with being with a man... But see, none of that carries over into SL. There’s
no reason for me to need to feel safe or protected, and procreation
just isn’t a factor.
Here, instead, she's free to pursue a relationship that's based purely on spiritual and emotional needs, and because other women are more likely to be in sync with her on those fronts, that's where her attention naturally goes.
This train of thought leads her to a final question that's doubly paradoxic:
"If my girlfriend decided to use a male avie for a while, shouldn’t I be attracted to that male avie?"
Read her answer, and all the rest of her utterly worthwhile reflections on the nature of metaverse love, on her blog.
Update, 11:15am: I was hoping Kit would reply to reader Comments on this post, but as it turns out, she is otherwise, jubilantly occupied-- go here and extend your congrats!