Never consult a therapist who isn’t at least as queer as you are.
I’ve met a whole pack of furries, literally, because of a shared love of costuming. The one person I know best among them said they started because they could be anonymously extroverted. Even online, they were very shy and introverted, but inside the animal head, they could let loose with everything they were afraid to be IRL.
I know an Otherkin family, also through costuming chats. It’s a completely different lifestyle/religion?/orientation than the furry pack.
It’s like when computers were new-ish- you could be a computer enthusiast, and have nothing in common with the guy that was all about hardware, because you were an OO programmer. Or “comics” - there’s a world of difference between collectors of the Golden Age and reader of current graphic novels. “Furry” covers a lot of space, online and IRL.
“… they started because they could be anonymously extroverted.Even online, they were very shy and introverted, but inside the animal head, they could let loose …”
I got roped (reluctantly) into being a puppeteer when I worked as a page at a library as a teenager. I suffered from agoraphobia and social anxiety, and my experience was as you say, that I could be anonymously extroverted. Both the puppets themselves and being behind the curtain on the stage allowed for a more extroverted side to come out. It turns out I can be a scenery chewer given the right venue…
- MANY to this article, and most of the replies.
(this name is not my wallet name, but my WoW main when I was still playing. )
It’s one of the things people really don’t get when they call furry a Kink. Most of the “Kinks” in furry exist outside of furry and what people are seeing is just somebody overlaying antho stuff to it. Really furry is an aesthetic expression overlay to stuff. Given it is a safe space to play out your gender/sexuality in a headspace that is a bit safer you tend to see more expression then you would in other subcultures. I’ve been closely involved in the fandom for the past 25 years and been running a regular montly furry party for the past 15 and the community always manages to surprise me a in a good way when it comes to exploring identity. I find it amazing when I see things hit the fandom and start to become more mainstream many years later. I guess once you get into ditching your species in your head it is much easier to play out and sort out your identity in a very personal way.
I think with the way the world has gone with being so inter connected that we are starting to see old cultural identities break. The social structures used in the past in the US just are failing us as consumer isn’t a good identity and the American dream turned into a joke for anything younger than a boomer. Finding new identities really is starting to become very important to the world.
I’m not a furry and I don’t have a fursona, but in the past I did do a lot of online chat based role-playing of characters where in retrospect I was clearly trying to boil down to an idealized representation of myself.
Ultimately I believe it worked to a degree and while I’m not the characters that I role-played in the past, I am closer to that idealized version of me I wished I could be, while being comfortable knowing that ideal self is an unattainable dream.
I did some early social media studies 15 years or so ago, and an offhand comment made over and over by many of the people participating was “I didn’t know other people that liked ___ were out there!” An unexpected artifact of sharing information was niche communities springing up. People found out that they might be the only one in their little town that liked ____, but there were hundreds or thousands out there online. Once the groups formed online, they moved into meatspace.
Finding your people is still one of the best things about the Internet.
Furry really was one of the earliest examples of that and almost the prototype on the internet. That “I didn’t know” is echoed by the creators of furry conventions as they got people to show up to parties in the mid 80s at fan conventions. Helped on by stuff like their showings of Animalympcs.
In other words, it’s just like any other hobby.
This topic was automatically closed after 5 days. New replies are no longer allowed.