LARPing Online Comes with a Fine
The internet always finds the truth.
LARPing is pretending to be something you’re not.
LARP stands for “Live Action Role Play” which is exactly what it sounds like, kids and adults playing pretend. These people will dress up like WWII Soldiers, re-enact Revolutionary War battles, wear chainmail, and swing cardboard swords fighting as knights against goblins, orcs, and elves. It’s not my particular cup of tea, but it’s done in good fun and brings people together, so I am indifferent to those who participate.
The problem people run into and where I do take issue is when people will LARP online, presenting themselves as a much more realistic character with achievements these people have not earned. This is called lying, not LARPing and the consequences of doing so are much worse than many can appreciate.
To pretend you’re a Knight fighting a dragon to save your girlfriend who is LARPing as a princess in her gown out in the woods is fine; to present yourself as a successful businessman, military Veteran, and involved father when you are none of those things, that is an entirely different story, and the ramifications will be felt by you, your friends and family, as well as your employer, any following online that you have, and most certainly yourself bearing the brunt of it all.
You cannot lie forever;
The internet will find out who the true you is, and the longer it goes on and the deeper the lies, the harder the fallout will be felt.
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Choices Have Consequences
Your intentional decision to fabricate your achievements, to amplify your experience, or to be the person you know you should be without ever doing the work to get there are all choices you alone have made, and the consequences of this deceit will fall to your shoulders.
The aim, of course, after reading this is to audit your life and ensure that the real you is better than the “you” online.
The persona online needs to be authentic to the real thing, and your flaws and features must be included if you’re to share yourself with the world from writing, recording, and content creation or angle of being a subject matter expert.
The human brain can only do so much when it comes to discerning what is real and what is fake.
Take a look at porn, your brain doesn’t know any different, and while you’re in the moment, your brain is all in but immediately after climax, a wave of self-disgust sets in, and this is where your brain recognizes that it wasn’t a real connection being had, it was lonely masturbatory behavior leading to further self-loathing.
This is exactly what LARPing does-
You get high off the validation for a while, and your brain doesn’t know any better, so then you double down for more and start acting, speaking, and believing the lie yourself - until you’re forced to face the reality of the situation in your “real life” where your boss dunks on you, bills add up, your girl is walking out the door, and your physical health is taking a toll.
Keeping up the charade has you conflicted because online, you’re the man, yet in the real world, you’re struggling, and there’s nobody to reach out to because admitting failures at that point requires the admission that it was all an act.