What is your kintype? (Just include the one you're focusing on.)
Do you identify for spiritual or psychological reasons?
Mainly psychological, even if I word it sometimes like it sounds spiritual, for I personally don't hold much stock in the multiverse theory.
When was your awakening (if you had one)?
I first awakened sometime between 2009 and 2010, but due to my parents reacting negatively I had to bury it deep deep down, to re-awaken (or it resurfaced, I guess) around August 2016. Between those two points I as I recall I acted about the same as I did before I found my source material, and I believe that between those two points I did experience some forms of slight mental/phantom shifting at random times. I stopped playing Legendary in 2013 due to reasons like college and later reasons like full-time employment.
(Also in May 2016 the company who made the game went bust - the game now no longer saves)
If you had one, do you believe something specific triggered your awakening?
I think my first exposure to my source material helped to trigger my awakening, due to the amount of familiarity and character recognition I experienced as well as 'natural' reactions that seemed so out of character for me at the time, being a 15/16 year-old AFAB person with no political interest,
If you had one, how long did your awakening last? Was it a sudden realisation, or did it take time?
It seemed to be a bit of both, at the moment I had the run-of-the-mill feeling of 'oh look, me', and also deja vu and what I call 'natural reactions' in regards to characters and specific locations, but due to my earlier repression, it feels like it took its time to resurface due to how much I had repressed it, with the occasional outburst and mild phantom and mental shifts, which I wasn't aware of the terminology back then.
If you had one, what did you feel during your awakening?
Emotion-wise, it was calming, in a way, as I finally had a name for why I felt the way I did, but then again at times during my awakening I felt like I was going crazy from how I felt towards a game, like I knew the other characters so well and familiar. I believe it also set into motion deeper questioning into my gender identity. Denying it didn't help me out very much, it just left me in the dark as to why I still felt weird, why something had always felt wrong.
Did you experience shifts and/or feelings of being non-human prior to your awakening?
Sadly my memory is pretty rusty when I'm thinking that far back, but I do remember starting to doubt my gender identity at that time, so the two might have been a part of each other, in that way. My stories also seemed to follow a similar trend, but of course that could just be coincidence, from LeFey's appearance, right to the appearance of the griffins in-game.
Did you know about otherkin/therians prior to your awakening? If yes, do you think learning about otherkin/therians played a part in triggering your awakening?
I didn't know anything about that kind of community, even from my various online research for my stories, never come across it before. Back then, I didn't frequent sites such as Tumblr either, so I didn't even see the 'fluffy' side of the community to laugh or mock (I was young, heh...). I learnt about fictionkin much much later in my life, around 19/20, and even then it leaned towards a more spiritual outlook, which didn't match up with what I thought about the root of my identity. So I stuck more to the Otherkin communities, and learnt more about myself that way, than trying to make myself 'match' the majority of the fictionkin community.
If you didn't know about otherkin/therians prior to your awakening, how did you come across the community?
I first came across the community through Naia’s video (“What? I
Think I’m An Animal”) which I watched when I was about 18/19, but I mistook a very strong cameo shift as the cause of my different feelings and ran with it, soon finding a fluffy site and flooded with misinformation... I soon went on to find more Otherkin communities, but still felt a lot out of place there, still unable to pin down my identity amongst therians and non-human identities. I then found the fictionkin community, but looking further into it the majority of the community had many fictotypes and seemed to experience it as a more spiritual aspect, whereas opposed to my single fictotype, made me seem the odd one out, and so I left and returned to the Otherkin communities where I had more of a home. And so here I am, home again...
Did you automatically know your species/race when you awakened?
Not really applicable here because human character, but yes. Ranging from the 'normal' fictionkin response of 'oh look, me' to quick flashbacks that I couldn't have forced if I tried.
If yes, did you make any attempts to verify this identification? If no, how did you discover your species/race (if you have)?
For a while, I distanced myself from the source material, and the identity seemed to stick around even though that was the time my parents had me bury how I felt deep deep down. Faded because of that repression, but still there and noticeable in the background.
Have you ever misidentified your species/race? If so, what did you mistake yourself for, and why do you think this was?
Cameo shifts made me mistake this a few times, but my main misidentifications were more before my second awakening when my fictionkin identity was buried but still sent out 'signals' from time to time.
My first mistake was what felt like a wolf/demon hybrid (days after watching that documentary and also minutes after having a huge argument with my parents, now I can say it was more in line with a berserker shift)
Then guardian angelkin (my close friend triggering this by calling me her 'guardian angel' - first false positive from a guided past life regression, as well as my feelings towards her in a need to protect)
Then being non-kin
Then a reptilian alien (which I believe came from my fondness and appreciation of the Greymon species from Digimon, but was also reinforced by another false positive from the same guided past life regression)
Do you experience involuntary mental shifts? If so, what are they like? How often do you have them? Are they triggered by anything in particular?
Mental shifts often happen at random, and to varying degrees. I have found that at work they are triggered more by the electronic keypads than anything else, which then quickly reminds me that I don't have those skills anymore, which can get frustrating at times, even if it did mean I'd lose my job for being a security risk. They can sometimes be as frequent as my phantom shifts are, but the two very rarely overlap.
Do you experience voluntary mental shifts? If so, what are they like, and how do you control them?
No, due to my own belief that I'd be forcing it and therefore tricking myself, I'd rather let them happen at a more natural rate, even if it does mean they rarely happen.
Do you experience involuntary phantom shifts? If so, what are they like? How often do you have them? Are they triggered by anything in particular?
My phantom shifts appear at random, so I don't know if anything does set them off. Shifts of the Signet can be awkward at times, the main noticeable portion being the feeling of the center of my palm being a raised oval of dead skin, the less noticeable being the slightly-raised circular markings on the back of my hand. When this happens, the shift does make parts of my job difficult due to a decreased range of motion of my hand. There has been one moment where I believe I experienced a full body shift including clothing and the feeling of shorter hair, and another moment where I experienced a phantom shift so strong that in my mind it caused pain, which lasted for a few minutes. If I had to put a timeframe on them, over the past six months I'd have to say they happen every month if not more. But, usually they're much rarer than that.
Do you experience voluntary phantom shifts? If so, what are they like, and how do you control them?
Same as the answer to voluntary mental shifts. Not going to happen.
Do you experience dream shifts? If so, how often? Are there any recurring themes? Are your dream shift settings/experiences the same as in normal dreams, or are there notable differences?
I have experienced very rare dream shifts, but not very often, rare enough that I can't pin an exact month/date to them. Although in almost every dream I do seem to be male, but that's the only recurring thing about them.
Even though I tend to get more flash visions, this one from around mid-November 2017 (copied from Discord):
Okay, so, how it lines up to in-game stuffs is that at one point when you’re going through the Black Order Tower, you intercept a message from LeFey himself stating that they could open fire on the Tower - so pretty much one of their huge gunships turns up outside the big series of windows. So you got to run for it or at least try and find shelter whilst being fired on by both gunship and soldiers.
Anyway, back to my point.
So, making my way through said Tower, I’m at the end of this hallway that open out into a longer, wider hallway, the walls I can see are black by the fire/smoke, and any light through the windows on the opposite wall are orange/red (more red) due to outside being a mess. But then, someone from the right-hand side of said larger hallway is pretty hastily pulling himself back along the floor. From what I remember, the armour was yellow which’d say he’s just a normal foot solider for the Order, not a commander or anything higher-up.
From the state of him, and the rapid fire from where he was coming from, probably got caught by the gunship because the gunfire stopped, it must’ve flown off I guess. I must’ve taken a step back. The guy’s pretty much covered in his own blood, how the hell he’s still alive is beyond me. It actually glistened from the fires in the background...
He’s looking at me, I’m looking at him. And there is just fear in his eyes, like he knows he’s going to die one way or another. (_Except I’m not as big a threat as a gunship_).
That’s what’s played the most in the past day.
I have a feeling that I ended his life out of pity, but I’m not entirely sure. It would’ve been a pretty slow death even by those standards, and it just went to show that LeFey didn’t give a damn as long as he got what he wanted.
Do you experience any other kind of shift? If so, elaborate.
I'm unsure if it's a phantom shift or an aura shift, but there have been moments in my life where I've felt taller than usual and instinctively ducked in response to getting close to an object/doorway that I 'knew' I was going to hit my head against, only to check back behind myself and have a clear few inches of air above my head. I need to look into it more, but I believe that had also happened recently in response to a great deal of frustration and stress, where I was stood opposite my team leader who's about my height, and suddenly felt a head taller than he was, trying not to act like I was looking down on him in response to this feeling.
I've also had strong cameo shifts, which is what made me initially misidentify myself due to both being young and fed off misinformation and a little bit wishful (come on, a wolf/demon, angel, and reptilian alien sounds a lot 'cooler' than a fictional human character), but also started me on my stance of harder and more detailed questioning of myself. I also mistook my Greymon-hearted shifts as a possible kintype, without fully realizing that I was mistaking it due to their closeness to myself.
What experiences and feelings led you to identify as your kintype rather than with it?
That's a question that crops up for me from time to time, and I can only say in response that I struggle to get 'sucked into' fictional worlds and stories (not for a lack of trying), and even when written in first person, I can't imagine myself in any of the main character's shoes. That's apparently a trait of Aspergers, but hey, it still adds up. It's not like I have matching personality traits or behaviors that make me think that I relate to him because of said matches. I think if I just identified with him, it'd be more of a 'surface' feeling, and not one that went deep down inside my very being and had some power to shake me to my very core with some reactions that I can only describe as feeling natural and usual to me. But that's just my own personal belief, what I feel inside.
To what extent do you see yourself as (non-physically) nonhuman? Do you identify as human as well as your kintype?
I can't really answer this due to identifying as a human character, but I do recognize the differences and have had to try and adapt to them as best I can, even if I fail sometimes and end up missing who and what I was.
What led you to believe that your identity is spiritual or psychological in nature? Have you ever believed the other was true, or seriously considered that it may be?
I see that my identity is more psychological in nature, more to the point that my brain was 'pre-wired' this way and well as my sense of being, and may have led to my own gender identity due to this, also the fact that as much as I've tried to take it as a more spiritual aspect whether due to the multiverse theory or not, I couldn't bring myself to accept it as true to myself. I have considered (kinda still am) that part of my identity is spiritual in nature, due to the feeling that something deep within me was 'off' being here and the fact that I can't fully explain the psychological reasoning for my identity.
For now I believe encountering my source material was enough of a match that it just clicked within me, in order to explain the things that happened in my past before I found said material.
Sometimes I do wonder, if I have walk-ins, exactly where do they go if I do believe they go back to their world? So maybe in some respect I do believe in multiple universes, but I have yet to research it fully due to the varying explanations between fictionkin.
Do you have any past life memories (if your beliefs are spiritual) or artificial memories/flashbacks (if your beliefs are psychological)? If so, describe them.
I do, but I haven't actively gone to discover any through methods like guided or unguided meditation due to my own experience of guided meditation throwing up false positives. The majority of my memories don't last very long, and are usually quite negative in what they show, bringing out some form of negative emotion alongside them. The memories I have range from before canon events of being offered the job by Gareth on a scrappy bit of paper and the instance of meeting LeFey and Vivian for the first time, to after game events such as being held by the Council and being forced to co-operate.
Most are written down... somewhere.
Do you ever feel homesick for the location your kintype lives/lived in? If so, how do you deal with those feelings?
Oh yes, sadly I do... It can get bad up to the point where I either break down in tears or I get mad about it, and obviously being unable to explain my feelings doesn't help me further. I know my home isn't exactly the best, and I'd be hunted down alongside Gareth and Vivian, but I know in my head I'd love to go home. When homesickness does hit me, depending on whether I'm in work or not when it does, I try and deal with it as best I can, ranging from trying my hardest to presenting as male to wearing my favorite NY Rangers shirt and playing music that reminds me of Gareth's weird taste in music... which strangely seems to work. If it doesn't... then I have to ride it out and try and seem outwardly positive whilst allowing myself the space.
Are there any locations that make you feel closer to your kintype? Any locations that make you feel disconnected from it?
Surprisingly, where I work sort of makes me feel closer, and I imagine this is due to the physical security systems that sometimes accidentally set off a shift at random. I've also found that colder weather (more so when there's a light breeze and/or rain blowing) helps to feel more connected.
Do you experience species dysphoria? If so, how often? To what extent? Do you have any methods of coping with it?
Not really, no. I get gender dysphoria though, usually I just have to ride that out, although binding seems to have lowered it from the higher levels it once was, but sometimes even then I get the occasional 'spike' which I can't cope with.
Do you have any behaviours or quirks that you attribute to your kintype?
A few, heh. I think it's where my want to work with electronics came from, but also my fear of being abandoned (whether intentional or not) and how out of place I can feel with my biological parents to the point where in stress I can doubt of myself being adopted or not (which isn't the greatest for me in those times). Due to game events, it might have also explained my dislike of thunderstorms that has lasted through my life, but I don't have much to back this up aside from in-game the moment I single-handedly doomed the world started up with this huge electrical storm.
Do you have any nonstandard thought processes or instinctual reactions that you attribute to your kintype?
These instinctual reactions are what clued me into that something might be different, and happened months before I found any source material. Sometime around when I was 15, I found that I had some degree of wariness/aversion/disgust towards the city of London (more specifically the Houses of Parliament), bearing in mind that I've never been there, nor have I ever been involved in anything political. To the point where if it was shown as being destroyed on-screen, it was usually a brief feeling of relief or happiness that followed, and has continued to this day. When I got up to the point in-game that showed that certain location, even up to that point of betrayal, during those times I felt uneasy and wanted to get through them as quickly as possible.
In addition to that, I've spoken enough (both over chat and in my blog) about a certain character and how my reactions to him (even the name alone) have a few times been more extreme and left me almost choking down my rage over what he did, so I will not repeat it here because I'd just be repeating myself. I had no control over my reaction to him, more an overwhelming sense of hatred and a want of payback.
Another glaring example was the way my own way of thinking seemed to shift whenever I knew there was a security system in place, as long as I could remember I'd always scan the room around myself and take note of camera positions/screens, blind spots, and the easiest and quickest way out as an escape plan.
Do you have any personality traits that you attribute to your kintype?
Not really, at times the way my personality is I feel like the polar opposite of who I was. In example, I like talking to people and getting to know them (which may be seen as a bit naive to be doing something like that), but from the memories and feelings I have, back then I didn't make it any of my business to know what other people were doing, and much preferred to keep myself to myself. Although I am known to be materialistic and a bit possessive, and my room filled with assorted crap due to it, so some things still show through to varying degrees.
Do you have any nonstandard beliefs, ethics or morals that you attribute to your kintype?
Not that I can think of, I just sorta wander through life without much close care to my own beliefs and such. They just happen, they could be connected or not. I do seem to stick by the moral of 'finders keepers' 'look before you leap' and 'treat others how you'd like to be treated' which at times can seem out of character for looking at me, but right now that's the only one I can think of that has some possible connection.
Why do you believe the above behaviours/traits/etc. are related to your kintype?
I'll admit I don't spend a lot of time thinking about this, I probably should. I believe that some, but not all, did carry over from that life, whether as a cruel joke or as an attempt to keep me safe, who knows. I think that 'some but not all' would be the explanation as to why at times I can feel like I should be able to do something instantly, but can't due to not possessing that amount of knowledge/skill any more. As for my reactions and fears, part of me thinks that they had much more impact to carry through into this life, whether they're magnified or not.
Do you feel that having a nonhuman identity has been a positive, negative or neutral experience? Have you ever tried to deny your nonhuman identity?
I have tried to deny my identity a few times, when it was called for in an attempt to act and seem 'normal'. Still broke it's way through at times, either through shifts or the persistent feeling of being out of place and in the wrong body. The majority of the time, it's a neutral experience with its ups and downs, much like life, heh... However, if anyone's seen my recent blog posts and writings, it seems to be a negative experience in the ways of random shifts, enraging and/or painful memories, and homesickness, to the point where I don't understand how people would want/wish to be kin so badly. There have been positives though, it's allowed me to put a name to what I felt, and how I felt during said experiences wasn't just me going crazy, and it's given me some strange sense of belonging in the sense that I'm not alone in any of this, and that there is something to go back to after this life.
Do you ever wish you could change your kintype? If so, what would you rather be?
I wish I could at times, although I don't know what I'd change it to. Maybe I'd be happier just not being kin at all, or I'd wish I was something more 'noticeable' during shifts, or something that gives a sense of being stronger, more powerful than I am now. But then it'd probably backfire wishing for something like that, I'd end up with really bad species dysphoria or something, heh.