It's been two and a half weeks since I made the decision to leave Second Life. Thanks to the people on this forum, I don't feel so alone.
There's been two main things to tackle. First one is that I used to derive an income from SL. I'd been on it for 8 years and my income came from the creative things for avatars I produced. During that time I'd learned how to use various graphics programs like Blender, Maya, Photoshop and PaintshopPro in order to produce the avatar clothing, skins and shapes that were popular. I came to the conclusiong that the time I have spent on learning these programs (a couple of them are pirate copies because there's no way I could afford them otherwise) and the experience I have gained must be of advantage in seeking a job in real life. So I started to look in that direction.
The place I live is an unemployment backspot. It used to be a mining area but since the depression of the 1970s in that industry, all that finished. Very difficult to obtain employment and even the jobs like shelf stacking in a supermarket, for instance, are highly sought after. Often it's the people you know and the people you butter up that have a bearing on gaining employment! Anyway, I went to an employment agency and found a really good agent to help me find work. She found a company three counties away from me but that allowed me to work from home producing animated and static graphics for their website which is continually reviewed and updated according to their clients. They also get me to produce graphic models for some of their clients in Maya such as ideas for furniture and decor. I was amazed! It's very part-time work at the moment (and I think that's why it was available) but it earns me three times as much as anything in Second Life ever did. It also doesn't take up anywhere near the time. I feel really blessed for getting this job and am hoping that they will give me more work as their company progresses.
The personal part of my SL problem has been much harder to deal with and so I am still going into SL for that sorry to say. It's much less frequent, though. Much less. And it's only been 2 and a half weeks, I suppose! Miracles don't happen overnight. I am sitting in the lounge during some of the evenings now, conversing with my husband and watching TV. I am not really into knitting but I bought a couple of general crafting magazines to see what I might take up.
I also realise that I have very little social life in real life and so I must begin to tackle that next. I don't even talk to my neighbours so I'll start there.