I have altphobia. It is not a common illness in the World of Warcraft community, I don't think. Heck, I don't even know. Creating, playing, gearing and working on an alternative character to my designated main is the hardest thing for me to do in game. Every moment feels wasted on my alt. The main could be getting more rep with this faction! The main could be collecting this gold! The main needs Emblems of Frost, too! Why isn't the main here!?
My main character has one reputation to go for Exalted. My main has their Rusted Proto-drake, approaching Bloodbathed Frostbrood, and is decked out in almost as much gear as they can achieve. Then, off in the other corner, is my alt shaman. Poor guy. I love him, I really do. He just feels so neglected. Why can't he have everything my main does! All that work, all that time! Why can't it all be transferred over magically to the alt that I would love to be my main?
Contradiction is abound. My current main is an alt. Is everything I have written a lie?! No. How did I originally change from main to alt? My original character was a raiding priest, whose experience was forged in the fires of vanilla Warcraft raiding. Burning Crusade was on the horizon, and we needed paladins. I took one for the team. My priest... gone. Did I regret it? Nah. Do I wish that my new main had all those previous achievements? You bet I do.
Cataclysm has the potential to re-main me with the addition of goblins to the Horde, even in the face of crippling altphobia. So now eyes turn to fate and we see what class rips me from my comfort zone and ignites a new fire under an alt that becomes a main. But the old main, the forgotten main, will still have these achievements, these man hours, these ideals as part of their existence. If only the new main could have it all, too.
What about you? Cataclysm brings many new opportunities to ditch your main and ascribe the "main mantle" upon a new creation. Will you? Are you like me, and feel like you are cheating on your main when you're playing on an alt?