Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Lords of Killing Innocence

One week ago I left LOKI. I have been hurting really badly the last few days. Today is the first day I feel like I can breath. This is an explanation to my friends and guild who might need more explanation. And another reason why the petals have been dropping off this blog one by one. This is me coping with my feelings. This is for my husband, because while I know he is 'getting it' and that means a lot to me, I figure seeing it in writing and with music (because we have always picked songs so carefully) can only help. So why am I leaving the guild that I have been in for two years and that my husband is GM of?

(1) Disagreeing with some things about Yakra’s leadership style AND my feelings about those disagreements not being heard by him. If he had sat down and listened to my thoughts and feelings I think I would have been okay. But I didn’t have a husband to listen to my concerns about the guild anymore I just had a GM trying to justify their every action.

High Life – Count Crows: God Yakra, we became the worst kind of people and you knew it would take more than an apology to get us out of it all. All I wanted was for you to acknowledge how LOKI was changing us as people and to tell me it would be okay and to convince me that I should stay. Sorry for the random slideshow of the pretty girl and pets. It was the best sound quality YouTube had.

(2) Increased stress during raids due to Yakra’s louder venting outbursts. I don’t particularly blame him for this. Ulduar has been stressful and I’m sure people who play alone in a room yell and slam things on their desks when other people screw up. But I was constantly feeling yelled to and then he would get on vent and be calm and collected. Sometimes he would yell on vent also, which actually was better for me because then the person who was at fault got yelled at too and I wasn’t just the GM’s emotional punching bag.

Worth Dying For – Rise Against: Because it’s a fucking game guys. Is it worth the yelling and fighting and belittling? It’s made my husband mean. It’s made me mean. It’s made loved bloggers highly opinionated and commenters jerks. It’s given us time for guild drama and comments behind people’s backs. And It’s made boss kills feel like slaps in the face. I don’t want to be a hardcore raider anymore.

(3) Rumors of rumors of people in the guild who didn’t like me and people who had me on ignore. For me its enough for one person to not like me, I will just leave. I don’t know what I did to this person. I used to confide in them and they confided some pretty personal stuff in me and I really hoped for the best for them regarding that situation. It was exciting to think I had found a friend like that on WoW. But apparently the things they are saying are upsetting this other person enough that they feel they have to tell me and it is just tearing me apart. I would rather not know and think I still had a friend in this person.

(4) I finally /gquit when I went to Yakra again after a raid hoping he would understand my feelings about an issue. Instead he focused on a side issue slightly related to the one I had. He focused on justifying his actions, not on understanding my feelings. He then made a guild policy change related to the side issue/ This was a change he was adamantly against, so I asked him “What made your change your mind?”. “To get you off my case.” Wow. Just wow. You are going to make decisions for your guild to get your wife off your case because it is easier than listening to her. Do. Not. Want. /gquit.

Rest of My Life – Less Than Jake: LOKI was full of my best friends. Trust me, I felt like there was nothing else I could do. When things got worse not better, yeah, I questioned leaving. I was making a sandwich in the kitchen when I hit my all time low. The ending of this video where the couple looks like they are going to get back together but they don’t is how I felt until last night.

Things got worse before they got better. Yakra and I flipped between using sugar coated words to denying WoW existed and bodily standing between each other and doorways, screaming at the tops of our lungs. Not to mention every possible comment we could make to hurt each other. “Let me know when you ARE going to get over it.”

Stuff got so bad last night we reached a point where we could be blatantly open with each other. “I lied to you. I was on the phone with so-and-so.” We went out to dinner. Yakra made some decisions. He listened to my feelings, actually understood them and wasn’t trying to defend himself when he didn’t need defending from my feelings. He explained to me this thing I did (do?) that really hurts his feelings and I was able to sort out in my mind how it is possible for me to have a certain opinion about something and not use that opinion to hurt him.

Rumors of My Demise Have Been Greatly Exaggerated – Rise Against: We built our sandcastles on WoW. Really, what were we thinking? I don’t know if we will get another chance to leave raiding and start dreaming and hobbies anew. We have said a lot of shit to each other and to other people in the guild and its going to come back in our faces. It already is. But as long as I have you, Yakra, I know we will okay, right?

So how does leaving LOKI feel? It kills. It’s like a piece of me is dieing inside. I was in LOKI for two years and I don’t think I would have left for any reason other than thinking my marriage was in serious peril. LOKI totally made me who I am as a raider and WoW player. I would like to think I had some part in making LOKI what it is. The old GM only had good things to say. He was letting me reminisce about LOKIs ‘glory days’ last night and that meant a lot to me. So what are my plans for Aert right now? I might server transfer and will probably work on Loremaster. But it's not like anywhere but LOKI will ever be home.

The Impression That I Get - The Mighty Mighty Bosstones: If I had a theme song for LOKI this would be it. Because what more can you ask for in a guild than not wanting to change a single thing for almost nine months? But if this is a test of choosing between my guild and my husband, I would like to think I am passing.

If I could offer you only one piece of advice: Think twice before letting your significant other be your Guild Master.

Power of Two – Indigo Girls: This one’s for Yakra, because I took him for better and I took him for worse and I’m not going to forget. It’s also our wedding song…


  1. Aerti -

    I am so, so sorry to hear about all of this. I often wonder how leading Monolith with Brade affects our relationsip, and while we don't have many fights about it we have had our differences, and things have gotten a bit blustery at times.

    If you need a home while you are sorting through all of your thoughts, or just need somewhere to hang out for a bit and get away from everything, please feel free to make a baby tauren druid over on Llane and I would be happy to offer her shelter in my branches.

    /huge hug

  2. @Beru - I know I said "think twice" and I know there are plenty of people who probably are in a guild with their S.O. in a leadership position above them who don't have problems. I guess I really just want people to know to talk it out. You can't make someone's feelings go away by saying "It's just a game/boss/the guild." And you have to do something else together besides stressful raiding, even if it is other WoW stuff.

    I am glad Yak and I finally talked stuff through, I just wish we had done it before we destroyed (for us) the thing we loved to do together the most.

  3. This post is alot like a mix-tape in Blog form.

    I love you, dear, and its sad that things have been rough. I do think we'll be OK, as long as we're together.

  4. Uhh...I'm a complete random, new to WoW blogging and all that, but you've been on my reading list for a while now (what can I say, I clearly have tree-envy, I can't resist druid blogs). I don't know why I haven't left you a frivolous comment before now, but it does make me a stranger trying to formulate a response to something as painful and complex as this.

    So I guess what I want to say is that this sounds *incredibly* difficult, but it sounds like you've managed to come through the worst of it into a space which, although horribly painful, at least seems like it is a space from which better times can spring.

    You're clearly a wonderful person and you write a wonderful blog (I smile every time see I see 'don't you wish your girlfriend had HoTs like me' - it really tickles me). Although it may feel like the petals are are falling at the moment, I'm sure there are still green leaves and maybe even buds to come. You will bloom in vivid profusion again.

  5. @Aertimus -

    If I may humbly offer a suggestion:

    Maybe take a small page from Keeva's book, so that you might still be able to keep WoW as a hobby between the two of you, without all of the stresses that were added by raiding and running your guild.

    Perhaps together roll some characters *coughtaurencough* that are just for you. Go to a different server, a different faction, don't tell anyone. Make the most exclusive guild on the server, where the membership is limited to two. Keep it your own quiet, private, little affair.

    Play them casually, do all of the lower instances as they should be, use them to enjoy spending time together in the game. There is no rush, no pressure to get to the end, no pressure to succeed.

    Set aside time each week specifically to enjoy each other as you play with these new creations. Run wailing caverns 7 times to get that drop you want. Laugh about how noobish you feel while doing so ("pro" tip - avoid questing in the barrens!). Blog about your mystery, un-named, character and her wonderful adventures, because I would certainly still read.

    And then maybe, slowly, as things mend, you can reconsider if you want to return to raiding. You can decide if you want to return to LOKI or look for a new place to hang your branches. I certainly know other couples that raid in different guilds, to avoid this very situation.

    It doesn't have to be tomorrow, or next week, or even next expansion. Take your time, get your feet under you, replant your roots =)

  6. Oh, Aertimus... so sorry to hear this! I've known and raided with a number of couples and always wondered how that worked.

    Anyways, I hope things get better (sounds like they already are?). Thinking of you! /hug

  7. I'm glad you took action before things got even worse.

    It tore me apart when my guild died because I had poured all of myself into it for 2 years, but even more so in the few months leading up to things falling apart. I tried so hard to make things work, and when it was finally over, I didn't know what to do with myself.

    Most other people simply transferred to other servers to keep raiding. Or quit. I felt like I was in limbo - they all seemed to move on (in one way or the other) but I was stuck standing in the smoking crater, wanting things back the way they were.

    I still feel a little strange. I probably won't feel right until I have cemented myself into a new "home".. but after two years, it's hard to imagine starting again with a completely new bunch of people.

    I've enjoyed the break from raiding, but I've still been super busy in the game, levelling my night elf, starting on dailies, and farming money. So I haven't really gone "casual" in terms of time invested, I just haven't been raiding. I've really enjoyed it. And to be honest, I'm not sure what I'll do in the future because I have particular personal goals that I've set myself, and they may not leave room for raiding (quite the 180 from a year or two ago when I would have said that raiding doesn't leave room for other things).

    I still don't feel like I have a "home", I am still very sad and bitter about losing my online family. But getting away from the stress, and the fights, and the constant feeling of pushing people uphill.. it just can't be a bad thing. And I can't blame myself for what happened.

    Things will get better.


  8. Aert: I don't have any wonderful words of wisdom, but just know that you're in my thoughts. I'm glad you two were able to talk things out. I only wish the best for you! <3

  9. *vibes* It sounds very difficult but sometimes once you've made the choice, things get easier. I hope it works out for you all (I think it will).

    There is life after hardcore raiding. And I don't think it's necessary to actually play together to be able to enjoy a game with your partner. Even if you are in different guilds, on different servers, or different factions, you still have the game in common. I used to raid hardcore while my husband played casually in a different guild, and we both were much happier for it.

    It's more important that you don't tear yourself apart over it.

  10. Hey, I hope everything works out and that you feel better soon.

    When you focus so much energy into something like WoW then it's perhaps easy to get tunnel vision and take your partner for granted and then conflicts can make a mess of things. Raiding can be so result oriented and more of a competition than just playing together and having fun.

    It's good that you took action. Good luck!

  11. Your post is beautiful, I wish you all the best in finding your new home in game. I think some of the previous comments about rolling an alt, or rolling an alt with your SO, are great. Keep the game fun for you two.

    Sorry you have been through so much.

  12. I'm sorry that you had this experience. I hope that you husband takes the time to realize the alienation that he's putting you through AND the limitations he puts himself through by that alienation. Having your spouse with you in things like this is great.

    My wife and I also play together, both Resto/Moonkin Druids. (Rolling for loot = bad mojo). We've ALWAYS pulled in different directions. I want to be with competent people who are all business (25 HC Raiding). She wants to be in a social guild that progresses. (10 man.) I tried for so long to make her happy in the game and have what I wanted too. It never worked. She would get bored with nights that I was doing 25 and eventually left the game. Not having her around would tax on me and then I'd leave.

    Since we came back we've been running 10s with personal friends. While myself and a few buddies would love to move on to 25 man for more of a challenge I'm trying to do what's right for her.

    I hope that your husband reads this as it's something that took me 6 years to learn (from SWG to Wow). Take the time to remember why you started playing. If you started playing together then remember how much fun it was to do so. If you met online, like my wife and I did in SWG (Starwars Galaxies), then remember what drew you to them at the time. Then analize what you are doing now. How did things change so much that you're at each other's thoats. No marriage in this world is worth less than a guild, progession or gear. And if those things ARE getting in the way you need to take the time and figure out why. If the guild issues are causing real marital problems you need to rethink your situation because the only person in that guild that is or can be TRUELY on your side is your spouse. If that guild is pushing them away you're failing in RL. RL > Game. Wife > Game friends.

    In no way to I agree with everything that my wife does or says. But she's a grown up and can handle herself as I can. But if there's an issue, bring the defenses down (Both of you) and talk it out. No side issues, direct topics only and answer on them without diverting. You'll both feel better and be stronger for it, together.

    Dillion of Dalaran

  13. Aerti, I am so hopeful for you since you took such brave steps to make a positive change. I wish you and yours all the best as you find your way through. I'm with Beru... if you need a new place to hang your hat for a while, come look me up on Khadgar =). I'm working on a little hunter there that would love some company from an expatriated Druid tree. =) /hug /hug /HUG!!!!!

  14. Joining in the group /hug here :)

    My husband was once my guild leader, and we agreed at the start of it that he was GM, and that as long as he listened to what I had to say about a situation as much as he listened to any of the other officers about their own opinions, his decisions would be final and I would not hold them against him. It was a casual raiding guild, so most of the drama came from balancing the "casual" with the "raiding," and we were usually on the same page about things. We refused to let a game that was, after all, a wedding present (cool friends, eh?), come between us.

    Eventually, the casual/progression split drove me to panic attacks and I realized I had to quit. Not just quit officer/raiding... but fully quit so that I wouldn't be sucked right back into the same raiding situation.

    He chose to leave with me. We were, though, at a point where he was as frustrated too, and we chose to just step back from the raiding scene and play alts. We leveled baby horde versions of ourselves and had a blast, playing about in a horde friends' guild. In time, we decided we liked their raiding style and that it wouldn't burn us out like it did before. We made the decision together to start raiding again, and I agreed even to switch to resto again since it was what the guild needed, just so that we could continue playing our game together.

    Communication is key, understanding both of your situations is key, and remembering why you're playing is key.

    I hope you two are able to fully sort things out; just be sure to give yourself as long of a break as you need before deciding where you want to go next.



About Amy

I've been playing WoW since Easter Sunday 2005, coincidentally the same day I became engaged to my forever husband and tank Chad, aka Yakra. I have held the roles of druid class officer, healing role officer, and general secretarial type officer in two guilds. Currently, I am not playing WoW. When I'm playing, my blog, like my life, is casualcore PvE healing focused. (I love gear math!) When I'm not playing WoW... well, I can't quite tell you what this blog will be about since I have never blogged while not playing WoW! Expect to see reflections on being a married WoW player and on just being married, stories from my other RP adventures (LARPing and table top), and accounts of my life's most meaningful activity: teaching chemistry.

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