Step 1, Thread 4 - To post about Step 1, go to Step 1, Thread 5 as this post has reached it's limit of responses.

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Silvertabby
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Hi Frankie and welcome to

Hi Frankie and welcome to Olga. First of all, know that you don't have to do this alone. We've all been where you are now and know exactly what you're going through. When we're addicted to gaming, it becomes our very existence and we can't imagine living without it. I thought I'd have to keep gaming all my life because I didn't think I could ever quit. But I did and this website has helped me tremendously in staying quit. If I can do it, so can you. You should find the sticked posts found here http://www.olganon.org/?q=forum/14 to be helpful. Be sure and read the one on the withdrawal symptoms as you will be going through it and it helps to know what to expect. I would encourage you to stick around, read posts, post your progress and attend meetings if you can. Best of luck to you!

 

Nobody can go back and start a new beginning, but anyone can start today and make a new ending. ~Maria Robinson

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Thank you Eve and

Thank you Eve and Silvertabby for your responses. It's really nice to know I'm not alone. Yesterday was my first 'game free' day in a long time. I was increadibly sad, I feel sick and I'm kinda ****ed off. I Keep thinking of the people I used to 'hang out' with and I feel a lot of resentment at this point, like I'm missing out on something. Is this normal? I hope it gets better. This sucks, I never thought I would feel like this, which does enforce the fact that gaming has taken over my life..or rather it WAS my life. RL seems kinda dull at this point. I'm gonna work on figuring out what it is people actually do. I lost my job a year ago and still haven't found anything. I think I'll try extra hard to look for work because If I'm honest I wasn't putting 100% into looking for anything. On reflection I think losing my job was probably the reason I got sucked back so deeply into gaming. I mean it was an issue while I was working. I didn't socialise with people after work, I just ran home to get online. anyway, I'm rambling again. Lets see if today is better than yesterday. Thank you once again.

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We are all the same ....The

We are all the same ....The thought of loosing my job already sucked me in the gaming. I imagine that when I would have lost it, I would game away all day, especially in winter,

The first thing I did when I quit gaming calling my mom how she was filling her day ..what is actualy simple. reading the newspaper, read a book, do some hobby an hour..clean the house do the tasks..go outside for a while...and then the day seems over already :)

Its that we believe that we MUST enjoy ourselves all day, what is a bit hyper way to live, and also very unhealthy as our bodies and brains are not able to preform every waking hour of the day. They need - large time of the day - relaxation time and low activity.

I was ****ed of about the fact my body made me stop, and I was not givien a choice. I wanted to quit, but it felt this choice was made before me what I couldnt stand - then. But the fuirst days are detoxicating and all stress and waste energy leaving your body...giving you 2 stressfull first 2 days, and the thought you have no idea how to fill up your day with otehr stuff..I'd say go running , and then applying ofr a job..The better you will feel the next weeks, the better chances you have finding work, as you will feel more positive in the long run, and people who will hire you think a month or 3, WOW, that person is positive, I must heave him!..its all about Karma...also practice yoga to relax you muscles...

I compare to myself exiting game addiction as a form of mild burn out. the symptoms are very much alike ( to me) Best practice is not to relapse the first 10 weeks, to allow you to get clean..After you are clean - it will be unlikely you want to go back...Also eat healthy food...and move as much you can outside - without a car...go to places were people are to get used to social life...later you can always try a small conversation. You are aware what make you 50% cured..

About the comparison to burnout...At the moment you r obrains only want Dopamine..so dont worry they will grow silent after a short while...then you will make plans of things you want to do. But then not doing them as lack of energy..well try them ...And later you will enjoy doing stuff you now cannot imagine.

I recommend to read novels ..as they help focussing your brain as reading does the oppisite of gaming toi your brains...it makes your brain better and stronger. What can be nicer then to sit in a prak with a good book in the sun, and after that run a few rounds or take the bike and sweat all energy - and toxic waste -

For now you may wish to study about what dopamine, cortisol and burnout do yo your brains (google them) in combination with game or drugs addiction. When you read this you will realize what keeps you addicted and how wrong it is for your body ...It helped me a great deal, and now I am scared of gaming.

pre- diagnosed with Autism.

bebetterhusband
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  step one questions from

step one questions from my sponsor:

"Have you quit before? If so, why did you go back? Read BB p. 24-25 ~ what about the curious mental blind spot? Is this a self-knowledge thing? Can I become a better person and lick this thing?"

I have tried to quit gaming once before. When I was in a relationship before my wife, I was asked to quit and I did. I had played only maybe 2 years of SWG at that time. When I deleted my main which I had invested so much time into, I was moody and kinda surly, probably going thru withdrawls and didn't know it since I didn't know gaming was an addiction thing and didn't know about the dopamine effect in the brain... So looking back I'm sure I had withdrawls with no context. The gal told me to go back into playing after about 2 months, even joining me in playing one of my key characters, the wife of my main.

Since being here with my wife I have tried to moderate play. After a few months of her being generous to me, loving me despite my abandoning her night after night while I played, she would get pretty upset, to the point of locking me out of the house- once she put me up in a hotel near my work site. Then I'd work my way back in. then try to moderate playtime again. That meant stopping for a week or two while the anger died down in her, and then trying to play at times of day when she wasn't even home, especially on my days off work when she was at work. It always became a full-time gaming again deal within a week or two. I/we went thru this cycle over a half dozen times in 4 years of marriage.There were even times in there where she would support my gaming, saying the computer room could become my man cave, my game room, my hideout from the stress of things. That we would redecorate the computer room as "my room" to support my writing and playing... She would send me off sometimes to de-stress or to veg-out from something hard to handle.I think the self-knowledge is, finally admitting there is such a thing as game addiction, I have it, and I can't start playing online video games because once I start I will return to full-time play to the exclusion of all else. It makes me ignore my wife and kids, my job, my health. So the key critical thing to know is, to not start playing. I can't start. If I can just manage to not start playing video games today, I will be okay. So far I have strung together 67 single days of not playing today.There is no time travel. I can't "not play tomorrow" or not next week. The myth would be to believe myself that I can say today, that I will not play next year or never again. (my wife, knowing this, doesn't trust me yet due to her experience with this and many AA group members grabbing newcomer chips at her meetings...) All the time in the universe anyone can control is right now this moment, this breath. My actions right now. To expand that into "today" is generous, and a luxury only for those whose resolve has grown to give them at least that much confidence in their resolve and their support system that they can back it up and not play today.So that is all i will commit to. That I will not start playing video games today. That is all I can manage to control, to hope to honestly control, is to not start, and only for today.I know the goal of the 12 step program is to help me become a better person who doesn't need to escape mentally into games. To become a better man, a better husband, a better father, a better employee, a better Christian. And that there I think is the key to it for me. If I can set aside time wasted into gaming and focus on becoming the better Christian man God wants me to really be, all those other aspects of my life will fall into line with that. They would be sub-headings under the better Godly man overall heading. So if I can improve myself in my relationship with God, it will improve my every worldly relationship as well.So in the AA Big Book there is a LOT of focus on becoming right with God, with accepting His help. with admitting Gods help is mandatory for my recovery because I am powerless and I need the help of God to take it away from me. So naturally all this segues into step two admitting that only God can help me, and he can help me lick this thing if I let him take control of what I obviously cannot control. Which right now is essentially my entire life. okay, /white flag wave Uncle Uncle. Help wanted. I'm dying here. I feel like Im crushed emotionally and Im back into the formless lump of clay I was originally made from. Ready to be reformed into something not hurting, something useful. God help me.

OLGA Home Page: "We advocate and provide a 12-Step Program of recovery. For those who are interested in a formalized meeting approach, we provide both a traditional 12-step program and a modified program for atheists and agnostics." I advocate and use the 12 steps programs, which have helped tens of millions of addicts of all kinds recover.

Patria
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bebetterhusband wrote: There
bebetterhusband wrote:

There is no time travel. I can't "not play tomorrow" or not next week. The myth would be to believe myself that I can say today, that I will not play next year or never again. (my wife, knowing this, doesn't trust me yet due to her experience with this and many AA group members grabbing newcomer chips at her meetings...) All the time in the universe anyone can control is right now this moment, this breath. My actions right now. To expand that into "today" is generous, and a luxury only for those whose resolve has grown to give them at least that much confidence in their resolve and their support system that they can back it up and not play today.

I think the most important thing AA taught me was "one day at a time." I don't have to quit next year, tomorrow, 3 years from now, or next week. I don't think about it. I work on today only.

Thank God this is a "a one day at a time" life. It is an overworked phrase. It is overlooked because we hear it so often. Yet, how much time is spent in yesterday's problems and tomorrow's fears?

How many of us truly live for today with today's tasks?

God gives us today only what we can handle with his help.

We can create goals and break it down into daily tasks but even with that, we can only do what is set before us today.

Your wife may not trust you yet. My husband didn't trust me for about two months. After that he realized that i was serious, and not just "giving one more excuse to get him off my back one more time."...it takes what it takes. We are suffering the consequences of our own addiction.

But, you and I can only do what we need to do to get well. I had to stop focusing on my husband's opinion of me, and focus on my opinion of me. I had to stop games, start recovering and doing everything in my power with God's help to help me recover. I had to start making living amends right away. If i was bad about meals, because I was too busy gaming, I had to make sure meals were nutritious and on time every day.

I had to make time to talk to husband so he felt valued, and I had to set aside time for my recovery.

We don't become saints. We become functional people, a little bit at a time; don't forget we've been quite ill, dealing with an addiction we did not mean to get into.

We are not at fault by becoming addicted. We are only at fault if we refuse to recover when faced with two choices: 1. recovery 2. being addicted. If we choose to go back to our addictions after finding out we have been gravely addicted, then no one can trust us, least of all ourselves.

That doesn't mean that relapses aren't helpful. They are. I count days just to reward myself. But if someone is 250 days without gaming and one day relapse in the middle, I won't beat them or me up over it. I'm not God. That's between that person and his higher power.

I just know that continuous recovery is by far better and easier than relapsing because it puts me into a different mindset. If I give myself permission to relapse, then I'm leaving the door open to that addiction monster to grab me again. Then I become irritable, restless, discontented.

Anyway, most of us would be gaming until death if we didn't have recovery. Best to be alive stumbling in recovery, than giving it all up (if our recovery isn't "perfect") by drowning in a sea of gaming.

nomoreaddiction
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  Hi, I'm new here and this

Hi, I'm new here and this is my first post.

First I have to tell you that english isn't my first language, and I'm still learning it, so I will make some grammar mistakes and similar, so please let me have a room for error.

Also I take a lot of time writing because I write it first and then I check it using google translate.

About me: I'm addict to computer in general, not just online games, also surfing the web, facebook games, watch TV series, etc...

But the strongest addiction and the more problematic are the online games.

I use to spent the most of my free time using the computer, playing online games, on facebook games, gaming/tecnology formus, youtube and surfing the web.

The worst addictive game I have ever played was world of warcraft, I played it a month along and I was all the time only thinking about the game. And sometimes I didn't slept the entire night because of being playing.

So in one certain moment I became aware of the situation and of the level of addiction that this game has, and I quit it because I knew it was stronger than me and it would be almost imposible to control it.

Another situation happened to me when I played minecraft, once I played along 15 hours without leaving my chair, I started at the evening and I finished near the midday of the other day. I was really exhausted at the end (yes, is a pretty obvious thought).

I have friends, not thousands of friends but I have them, I have kind of a social life, I mean, I don't go to party all the weekends but I usually go out sometimes.

Powerlessness

When I'm really into a game, I can't control myself and I can't decide to stop playing it.

For example yesterday I stared playing a facebook game, and I was like an hour there, playing it, even if I hadn't anything to do more than wait (on these games you usually have waiting time), I was there, wating in front of the screen.

The same happens when I'm playing games like First Person Shooters o games like League of Legends, when I end a battle/match, I say, well 1 game more and that's it. And I keep saying this to me after every match.

Another situation but no related with game, instead with TV series, I got the complete "prison break" serie, the 4 seasons. And when I watched it, I watched like 7 episodes in a row (each have a duration of 45min), I even went bed at 4am because of watching it.

And a final example, about surfing the web, I can spent 1 or 2 hours for example in a site called 9gag, where they post funny images and interesting stuff, and also watching videos on youtube the same, I can be there 2 hours or more.

Oh, also, about books, when I got the book "the hunger games" I read the entire book in only 1 day, I spend that day only reading this book.

So I think my powerlessness is with anything that can become addictive.

Unmanageability

Because of my addiction, last year I got lowers marks in comparision with previous years.

I have modified severely my sleeping hours and sometimes I had to sleep at day because of it.

In a past period, I stopped going to do sports (I go to a sports club).

And finnaly I think that too much time in the computer don't allow me to socialize more with other people and improve my social skills (I notice that I have weak social skills when I talk to new people, and I will like to improve them).

The thing is I don't want to quit forever from games, I know in this step I have to do it yes and I'm doing it, but at the end of the process I would like to play games again, but with the posibility of control the time I spend.

Well, I didn't expressed all what I wanted to, because is very difficult doing it in english but at least I gave you an idea about my addiction problem.

Sorry again for my bad english, I will try to do my best.

Despite my nick, my name is Martin, BTW :D

What you do today, maybe doesn't matter tomorrow, but it will matter in 1 year.
Excess or Lack, doesn't matter in what, is bad. One of the most difficult thing in the world is having a balance between all what you do in your life. No one will never reach it, but yes it's possible to be near of that. That's my goal.

Patria
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You have great English! 

You have great English! And really good Step 1 too.

I would suggest finding a sponsor here who can help you through all the steps. Yes, you are welcome here whether you do the steps or not, but I find recovering from addictions is easier with the 12 steps.

I don't want to be miserable, kicking and screaming at life, because my brain is so messed up without my substances (alcohol/gaming). The 12 steps, along with a recovery buddy/sponsor, help us get back to sanity--the sanity of not going back to the gaming life.

Good luck!

nomoreaddiction
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Ok thanks for the

Ok thanks for the advice.

Where do I have to ask for the sponsor? In a particular subforum?

Despite my nick, my name is Martin, BTW :D

What you do today, maybe doesn't matter tomorrow, but it will matter in 1 year.
Excess or Lack, doesn't matter in what, is bad. One of the most difficult thing in the world is having a balance between all what you do in your life. No one will never reach it, but yes it's possible to be near of that. That's my goal.

Patria
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nomoreaddiction wrote:Ok

 

nomoreaddiction wrote:

Ok thanks for the advice.

Where do I have to ask for the sponsor? In a particular subforum?

I made you a member, go ahead and post a new thread here, asking for a sponsor.

 

JLynn
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Heh, it seems I posted in

Heh, it seems I posted in the wrong place. I found this site on an impulse, knowing if I didn't follow through with my need to fix this problem I wouldn't do it. I'm not entirely unfamiliar with the 12 steps, having gone to a few CoDA meetings and attempting to help my mother through AA. I posted a rather long confession in the gamers help section so I don't think it would be appropriate to reiderate all of that here.

I do acknowledge that I am completely out of control at this point. I am miserable and unhealthy; physically, mentally and spiritually. I see so many things about reclaiming your life, getting control back and so on. I've never had control. I've never wanted to have control until now and its about time I do something.

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I have been playing games

I have been playing games for almost 9-10 years, it started out as something to do with my friends when we were hanging out together but then it became something I did by myself. Now I can't find myself going one day without getting on one of my many games.

I spend inordinate amounts of money on them too. I don't want to spend it and I never do all at the same time it is little bits here and there with no thought to the bigger picture. I have bills and a family to take care of, I have a beautiful wife who loves me through all of this even though she is not a gamer herself and two lovely adoring children one is three years old and the other is a newborn. But I spend no time with them because of this addiction, we almost lost our house and it almost cost me everything. But even knowing that the urge to play the games is so strong that I shake uncontrollably at times.

My wife recently had an intervention for me she has taken away my laptop and my 360, the only reason I can get on here is because this is her laptop and she has blocked the websites I game off of and passworded the security system, and my games don't work off of proxy websites. I can't control this monster by myself and the need is spreading to other games and the like now. I had quit playing TCG's about 3 months ago and the urge to pick them back up is strong now, I had also quit smoking but the need to do that now is greater than it has been in a long time.

Long story short, I am screwed up and I need help but I don't know where to start.

-Tobes

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Hi Tobes and welcome to

Hi Tobes and welcome to Olga. This website is a great place to start. I'm so glad you found us. We can all relate to what you're going through. I wanted to stop gaming for over a year before I was finally able to do so, and God had to intervene for me. It's cool your wife is helping you and is understanding of what you're going through. It's not easy to quit gaming, as you well know, but for us addicts, it's our only choice if we want to live any kind of "normal" life. I hope you'll stick around here and read posts, continue to post and attend some meetings if you can. It really helps. This community is very supportive and we help each other to beat this "gaming addiction demon". Best of luck to you.

 

Nobody can go back and start a new beginning, but anyone can start today and make a new ending. ~Maria Robinson

Patria
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We have 7 meetings a week in

We have 7 meetings a week in the Chat Room, starts 6pm pacific. http://www.olganon.org/?q=calendar

http://www.olganon.org/chat/flashchat.php (sign in with name and password)

We have Skype meetings 3 times a week, Wednesday, Saturday and Monday, 12 noon Pacific time. http://www.olganon.org/?q=node/27234

Come chat with us!

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Tobeszijian wrote: I have
Tobeszijian wrote:

I have bills and a family to take care of, I have a beautiful wife who loves me through all of this even though she is not a gamer herself and two lovely adoring children one is three years old and the other is a newborn. But I spend no time with them because of this addiction, we almost lost our house and it almost cost me everything. But even knowing that the urge to play the games is so strong that I shake uncontrollably at times.

If you are like us you are a gaming addict and a gamer wants to game even when their life is falling apart around them (*especially* when their life is falling apart, since we like to hide from life's hardships in games). If you are willing, you too can lose the desire to game. With what little time I have (63 days), I have seen plenty of people here who enjoy life without the use of video games.

I am glad you choose your children over playing games. I have a 4 year old daughter myself and she is the reason I got here and now one of my main reasons for staying here. I just see how she is so much more responsive to a daddy who takes her on hikes, reads to her, helps here with crafting, fixes her toys, pays attention to her stories. I just look at her and I am truly content that I quit.

Perhaps a man who is worthy of the name should put aside this question of how long he will live ..., and turn his attention to this instead, to how he can live the best life possible in the time that is granted to him
Marcus Aurelius

Rainmaker_9 (not verified)
I knew I had a problem when

I knew I had a problem when I decided to tell my husband of 18 years I wanted a divorce. His constant questioning and mistrust of me was driving me crazy. I was so consumed with my game I wasn't thinking how absurd this must have sounded to him. How dare he interrupt my "me" time. The pain I've cause d him and my friends and family is too much to bear. After having a Chernobyl type melt down God made me realize what I was about to lose. I found a therapist who specializes in addiction. After a few sessions of accusing my husband for driving me to gaming I realized that I was the addict not him. I admitted out loud to her last week about my gaming addiction. She suggested I join OLGA. I know I am powerless and I'm weak and need the support offered here and God's grace to help me see it through....Step 1 taking Gods hand and letting him lead me out of the darkness...

~Rainmaker

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Good for you Rainmaker,

Good for you Rainmaker, you're making excellent progress!

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Well, its hard for me to

Well, its hard for me to start at the beginning because it was so far back. I guess it started in the 7th or 8th grade with a game called " Dungeons and Dragons " back in the days of " 1st Eddition " and that was the new thing. I began my adventure with a group of boys who were all smarter than me and families were better off than me with the idea that it would be good for me to hang out with these guys because they were the rich kids, over achievers ect. Iwas punted out of the group, not cool/rich/whatever enough to be friends with these guys. But, I was really just looking for friends.. not an addiction. So, I decided if they didnt like me Ill get better at the game and maybe they would accept me. I went further than any in the group. I was, what some called, a rules lawer, Min/Maxer. And after I studdied that game and played it over and over with diffrent people, my need for acceptance was never fufilled. My obsession with perfection ofthe game took presidence over studies, church, family, work, and just about anything else. When anyone would try to get me to do something that would impede my progress with DnD i would get aggressive, and beligerant. I now have experienced Everquest, and Wow. I live on Ps2 games . I live in a state of gaming so I can not think about just how bad my life has become. after screwing off a college edjucation, fiance, wife, countless jobs, a handfull of friends..... all for my compulsion to escape reality. I dont know if I can make it out. Im 45 now, and I really dont know if I can stop. But I know I will eventually. I just dont know how.

Jeff

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You've taken the first step,

You've taken the first step, Blackwell. Keep coming back.

Acceptance. When I am disturbed, it is because a person, place, thing, or situation is unacceptable to me. I find no serenity until I accept my life as being exactly the way it is meant to be. Nothing happens in God’s world by mistake.  Acknowledge the problem, but live the solution!

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Well, I'm game free for

Well, I'm game free for almost 3 weeks, but I should post my Step 1 here I guess. Just for the record.

Powerlessness:

I think I almost never played without lying to myself about how long I would spend. Usually, I would never give myself a stopping time, but when I tried to, when I needed to, I don't think I ever met it. I sometimes would play until I was hungry, falling asleep, bored out of my mind, or whatever. And sometimes not that much. But it was never under control.

Unmanageability:

My life has been unmanageable for a while due to my very stressful circumstances and my bipolar disorder. But the gaming just made an otherwise bad situation worse. My life is still completely unmanageable even game free. But I'm hoping that with the recovery process, things will get better for me all around. I sure need them to. As one person said, "Recovery isn't about dealing with gaming. Recovery is about dealing with life." So I'm going to try to use my recovery to deal with my utterly chaotic and bombed-out life. The life I've been hiding from for so long.

I am a recovering computer game and gambling addict. My recovery birthday: On May 6, 2012 I quit games and began working a program of recovery through OLGA No computer games or slot games for me since December 12, 2012. No solitaire games with real cards since June 2013.

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step 1: admit we are

step 1: admit we are powerless over gaming, and our lives have become unmaneagable.

I tried many times over 3 years to manage my playtime. exert my power to control it.

I was really in danger of relapse in the first few weeks after quitting, after finding OLGA... until I really admitted this problem and asked God to help me , which is step 2...

I still have that little red devil sitting on my shoulder trying to convince me to give him his game fix...

of course my inner addict is ME.

Related to step 1, if willpower were enough there would be no addicts. If my will was enough i would have had the dishes and laundry done, yard mowed, and dinner cooking when my family got home from school...

the whole point of not being able to manage my playtime is that moderation is the lie, for an addict. Non-addicts can moderate. For them, their willpower is sufficient to manage their playtime. They will to do other things so they log out and do them...

So obviously my will is insufficient. My will is flawed, selfish. Every time I tried to exert My so-called power to control my gaming I failed and became out of control.

I'm still trying to learn how to manage my own life for the first time.

I need help. I need God's will not mine.

OLGA Home Page: "We advocate and provide a 12-Step Program of recovery. For those who are interested in a formalized meeting approach, we provide both a traditional 12-step program and a modified program for atheists and agnostics." I advocate and use the 12 steps programs, which have helped tens of millions of addicts of all kinds recover.

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Hi! I am new here. English

Hi!

I am new here. English is not my first language (it's second :) )

I'm 29 years old. I started playing games when I was 12-13. There was first GameBoy and than PC games. I have had hard childhood, there was war and we had to flee the country for 4 months.My dad and grandmother died, and I started to close in my self. I'm very close to my mother, who I now blame for not helping me when I was younger :(

POWERLESSNESS

Computer games were my only real joy in life during highscool and collague. I lived my imaginary life with all signs of an addict but nobody recognize it. My life was a mess and I decided to move to another town trying to escape problems. But of course they followed me.

I stoped playing computer PC games (Company of Heroes, Total War 2, Supreme Commander 2, Far Cry, Starcraft, Half Life 2.....) 9 months ago, since I moved to fourth appartment.

I'm cheking e-mail, facebook, web pages 20 times a day on my phone and on PC at work. I can't controle it.

UNMANAGEABILITY

Now I am in more problems than ever. I fall in depression, taking antidepressives, going to teraphy, having trouble organizing my time, have no will to do anything. I have no interes in job that I work, nobody cares. Most of the time I don't do anything.

I'll be moving to 5th apartment in 4 years. My way of thinking is stuck in, I don't know, highscool maybe, and I have to work as I finished college that I passed mostly cheating. Playing games took most of my time :(

I have friends that I can talk to, including priests and psychiatrists, but a I lack people who would understand problems wtih gaming.

Thank you for your suppot!

- Jurica

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Oi life in the 21st century.

Oi life in the 21st century. Jvekic, your story is becoming all too familiar here. Thankfully, there's hope. Disconnect the electronic IV; connect with flesh and blood, dirt and sunshine.

"It is appallingly obvious our technology has exceeded our humanity" ~ Einstein

"Once a new technology rolls over you, if you're not part of the steamroller, you're part of the road." ~ Stewart Brand

"Humanity is acquiring all the right technology for all the wrong reasons." ~R. Buckminster Fuller

Acceptance. When I am disturbed, it is because a person, place, thing, or situation is unacceptable to me. I find no serenity until I accept my life as being exactly the way it is meant to be. Nothing happens in God’s world by mistake.  Acknowledge the problem, but live the solution!

vesalian.prime
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Are you playing other games,

Are you playing other games, like facebook games or flash games ? I sold my xbox and uninstalled all my pc games, and then I found myself playing a tower defense flash game. Another time I got into facebook games until they were taking up all my time.

Three months ago I decided to quit all video games, and my life has gotten better. I still struggle with too much video entertainment (lately netflix&porn), until I decided to quit that three days ago. Now I have to watch out not to stay up late watching iTune shows or YouTube videos.

It is always something. Unless I try to do something useful and wholesome in my time a my work or with my family, nothing happens except me sitting in front of a screen absorbing moving pictures. Sometimes I have to force myself against my own expectations, without hope, just do it because there is no alternative. And I find that I end up feeling better afterward. My own thinking often gets me stuck. Only when I surrender and decide to follow a program of recovery, take advice, listen to my higher power (the group conscious of NA&OLGA), and get my self out of the way, then it gets better.

It always feels like a complete surprise.

Perhaps a man who is worthy of the name should put aside this question of how long he will live ..., and turn his attention to this instead, to how he can live the best life possible in the time that is granted to him
Marcus Aurelius

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Jvekic. try to get in touch

Jvekic.

try to get in touch with cognitive behaviour therapist , as you need treatment against depression. The war have given you imprint on fever, and you must look forward. Everyt time hwen you have fever or depressed thought, try to erase it and replace with happy thought. You seem a sensitive guy so that always makes it harder.

You must work in changing you think, I think, when I read. Anti depresseants will fix your fears and panic, and give you a bit of space to function...

I understand I go through same process. All my youth I was afraid of nucleair strike..and that fear is still part of me..I know start treatment today to get it out.

pre- diagnosed with Autism.

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Escapist behavior was a

Escapist behavior was a method of emotion coping I used from a young age. I am learning to recognize when those feelings hit, and am trying to come up with tools to keep me from falling back into doing activities that make my life unmanagable. Excessive gaming was the worst for me. I couldn't think, concentrate and I was completely unable to deal with anything. i became a numb shell of a person, and unable to be the caring loving wife/mom my husband and son needed.

I also lost all of my motivation for every worthwhile activity....

Real change happened for me when I accepted that those activities.. hurt me..

I also denounced the lie that things can't change..

I am not hopeless. I don't have to live like that...

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Kate1song wrote: Escapist
Kate1song wrote:

Escapist behavior was a method of emotion coping I used from a young age. I am learing to recognize when those feelings hit, and am trying to come up with tools to keep me from falling back into doing activities that make my life unmanagable. Excessive gaming was the worst for me. I couldn't think, concentrate and I was completely unable to deal with anything. i became a numb shell of a person, and unable to be the caring loving wife/mom my husband and son needed.

I also lost all of my motivation for every worthwhile activity....

The cruelest part of this disease, in my opinion, is that it robs us of motivation for everything else. And that motivation is slow in returning, but it does return.

Kate1song wrote:

Real change happened for me when I accepted that those activities.. hurt me..

I also denounced the lie that things can't change..

I am not hopeless. I don't have to live like that...

These three lines are the simple truth of the matter.

Acceptance. When I am disturbed, it is because a person, place, thing, or situation is unacceptable to me. I find no serenity until I accept my life as being exactly the way it is meant to be. Nothing happens in God’s world by mistake.  Acknowledge the problem, but live the solution!

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I have been addicted to

I have been addicted to various games throughout my life. I think that the addiction started for me when I lived in Ohio probably 14 or 15 years ago. I have been powerless against them since the very first year that I was truly addicted to them. Fortunately for me, I had my parents and my school always pushing me along at one thing or another so I was able to live a semi-normal life. (Don't get me wrong, every moment of my free time that I got, I was always trying to play one game or another on whatever game system I had nearby. I just did not get much free time with the schedule I was on.)

My gaming really started to become a problem when I left for College at Louisiana Tech University. I was roughly 8 or 9 hours away from home with little to no parental influence on me. During my first quarter at Tech, it wasn't so bad because the Internet connection was so horrible that even Runescape could barely be played. Then I convinced my parents to pay for a new internet connection from suddenlink for me and everything spiraled downhill from there.

I was running on a blazing fast internet connection that could run any game I wanted to. This allowed me to restart my better games like Guild Wars, Skyrim, and I could run Runescape at a decent speed. From that point on, my grades just plummeted, I would drop out of all but one class (and then rarely even went to that class) so that the College couldn't kick me out of the dorm, stopped excercising altogether, and generally let myself fall into a state of disrepair while my games took over my life.

If I could go back and change even just one thing, I would stop myself from getting the better internet connection because that is what caused me the most greif out of all my actions.

I currently have my family behind me supporting me in my effort to quit gaming alltogether but as many of you know, this is a difficult endeavor and I can use all the help I can get.

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Butch, It's great that you

Butch,

It's great that you came here. Good for you that you have decided to quit and that you know you need help! It's great also that your family are supporting you. Excellent.

We are also glad you came to OLGA. I encourage you to come here, read, read, read, and keep posting your story. The more you read, the more you will see that so many stories here are similar to yours. And you will gain insight about yourself and your story. And you can post that insight, and help yourself and others.

As you can see, :) people will respond to your posts!

Also, we have chat meetings every night at 9 p.m. Eastern, 6 p.m. Pacific (U.S.) time. Feel free to come if you can. They are pretty informal; people take turns and share their stories about how and why they quit and how they are recovering, etc. You can share, or you can just observe; no requirements. I find the meetings to be very helpful to me.

Good luck to you, Butch! See you at the meeting....

I am a recovering computer game and gambling addict. My recovery birthday: On May 6, 2012 I quit games and began working a program of recovery through OLGA No computer games or slot games for me since December 12, 2012. No solitaire games with real cards since June 2013.

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I've tried to get help for

I've tried to get help for my addiction for some time now. I've been in therapy and I don't think my therapist thinks of it as a legitimate addiction, although he does understand it as a way to self-soothe. I just deleted the sudoku game from my iphone to stop playing. I had tried this before, but when I get too anxious it's too easy to escape into the compulsive playing. I have other games that I play. Sometimes I rationalize it thinking that another crossword puzzle isn't really a mindless game, so it's not really an addiction. But I have all of the signs. I avoid people, family, work. I fall behind on my responsibilities. I live in constant shame and guilt. I'm afraid of talking about it to anyone. I need a lot of help with this. It's going to be hard for me to work all of the steps. I know I'm going to have to face some very painful shameful feelings to publically admit my behavior. I don't want to lie and hide anymore. I need to find community but I am also afraid that this website will replace my games with another activity that prevents me from playing rl.

My life is completely out of control. I think of the game every waking moment. Then I start to play and I forget anything else. I pretend that nothing else is important or that there will be time later to attend to necessities (right now it's financial concerns and my relationship with my husband). I don't think I have ever stopped playing for more than a week. I always have another excuse or pretend that it will be a passing phase.

I wish I had gotten help with this back in 1989 when I first started playing Tetris.

I want to know how to manage this without it turning into another "game" or way of surfing the internet.

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hello 68, welcome to OLGA,

hello 68, welcome to OLGA, I'm glad you've found our fellowship.

I have some good news and some bad news. Bad news first. You can't go back to 1989 and un-tetris, unfortunately. Your therapist may not believe gaming is addictive. And its true that you may have to confront some uncomfortable truths, which will not be easy.

On the other hand, there's some outstanding news. First, you've found a place with a proven program that has worked for those that have worked it, and supportive people to help you onto and with the path. Nobody will shame or guilt you. Second, NOBODY here will deny that gaming can be addictive and destructive. And third, you definitely do not need to do ALL the steps today. (In fact, you probably couldn't even if you tried.) That's too big. A better goal is to not game the rest of the day. If that's too long, try until dinnertime, then until bedtime.

Stay a while, read some others' stories (maybe even mine), and please come to a meeting some night at 9 pm eastern, when you are ready.

Twelve miles into the forest, 12 miles out.
Left my poisonous game July 4, 2012. Left online communities June 4, 2013.

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sudoku68, Help is here. 

sudoku68,

Help is here. There are wonderful people here, and the collective wisdom of the community is awesome. You won't be able to take every suggestion made, but you will certainly get some that will help you.

When I quit, I decided to quit all computer games, and in addition, at least for now, decided to quit offline sudoku which was taking a lot of time, and gambling, which I didn't do very much but which is obviously unproductive, even though kind of fun. You can't quit everything at once, and there are ups and downs. A couple of weeks ago I had a gambling "relapse" (I've kept with my decision on computer games though). What that did was it showed me for real that the gambling, even though it was only occasional, functioned in the same way that my daily game-playing did. So that's now a "hard" item on my personal list of no-nos.

I also spent a lot of time on OLGA, and come back here for a few hours every day, and sometimes many more--today I'm "flaming" the site with posts and responses, because I haven't been here much in the past few weeks due to personal issues. Is OLGA "addictve" for me now? I don't care. It's helping me stay away from other things and helping me make progress in my life. I'm convinced that if I keep coming to meetings and getting support here, other areas of my life will improve, including my ability to balance my participation on OLGA! And many people, including my therapist, have told me that a good rule of thumb is to initially spend as much time on your recovery as you used to spend on your addiction. Well, there you go: come to OLGA whenever you feel like gaming, post your feelings, and read others' posts. I see from the list of those currently online that many, many of my recovery buddies are here multiple times a day. It's helping us.

Best wishes to you. Keep coming back even if you aren't able to quit right now--you will be able to soon. And I'll see you at the meeting... :)

I am a recovering computer game and gambling addict. My recovery birthday: On May 6, 2012 I quit games and began working a program of recovery through OLGA No computer games or slot games for me since December 12, 2012. No solitaire games with real cards since June 2013.

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Hi becca and welcome to

Hi becca and welcome to Olga. I could relate to so much of what you said. I didn't think I could ever quit either, but I did and, with the help of God and this community, I've stayed quit. As far as losing your online friends....yes, you will....and you will need to make new friends in the real world. It's hard and it's a long journey back to real life from excessive gaming, but it's doable and it's the best thing you will ever do for yourself. Addictive gaming simply destroys our lives.

Stick around here and start by reading posts. Attend some meeetings if you can. Keep on posting for support and encouragement. This community is very supportive....we've all been there and we know how hard it is to quit and take back our lives from gaming. Somehow, doing it together makes it easier. I hope to see you around. Take care.

 

Nobody can go back and start a new beginning, but anyone can start today and make a new ending. ~Maria Robinson

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Hi becca, Your story sounds

Hi becca,

Your story sounds a lot like mine. It is hard to quit and leave that character behind but it is so worth it. You are not alone. Others have had the courage to do it, and you can do it too, when you are ready.

There are meetings every night in the chat room that are very helpful and inspiring. You don't have to participate ntil you want to. They are every night at 9 pm. Hope to see you there soon.

Twelve miles into the forest, 12 miles out.
Left my poisonous game July 4, 2012. Left online communities June 4, 2013.

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Thank-you.  I am a little

Thank-you. I am a little embarrassed about sharing all of that. I have never admitted any of those things to another person before. I did quit 3 of my 4 domains last night, and going back to do the last one tonight. I only told one gamer friend what I was doing, and though he still plays he was very supportive. I do look forward to joining in some meetings. :)

"A man who fears suffering is already suffering from what he fears." ~Michel de Montaigne

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becca, It sounds like one

becca,

It sounds like one obstacle to quitting is fear. You believe that you get some social interaction from the game that you can't get anywhere else. I can tell that your game relationships are important to you. But it also sounds like you feel you are addicted. If you are, then the game will take over your life, if it has not already done so. (And frankly, from your post it seems like it has *already* done so.)

This leaves you with a choice between (1) all your game relationships and (2) all your RL relationships. If you could moderate your game playing you could have both, but an addiction will eventually interfere with everything--family, including children, friends, job, other responsibilities and overall mental health (yes, excessive playing does brain damage). This is a stark choice, but if you are addicted this is your real choice.

You have already experienced your powerlessness to control your gaming. You have not been able to play "just a little bit" like many other people can. You probably never will. Sorry. You and me both. It's just not an option for us.

If you decide that keeping your child, your family, your RL friends and your job are more important than keeping your game, then everyone here will help you. When you quit, you can come here whenever (and I mean whenever) you feel like playing. There may not always be someone to chat with you, but if you just post your feelings and thoughts, people will start responding right away. And there are nightly chat meetings (9pm Eastern US time), and SKYPE meetings three times a week. Don't be a stranger--help is here. See you at the meeting....

I am a recovering computer game and gambling addict. My recovery birthday: On May 6, 2012 I quit games and began working a program of recovery through OLGA No computer games or slot games for me since December 12, 2012. No solitaire games with real cards since June 2013.

dan1
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We posted at the same

We posted at the same moment, lol. So glad you are quitting. I look forward to getting to know you as you come to the meetings. Best wishes to you.

I am a recovering computer game and gambling addict. My recovery birthday: On May 6, 2012 I quit games and began working a program of recovery through OLGA No computer games or slot games for me since December 12, 2012. No solitaire games with real cards since June 2013.

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Welcome Becca and Soduku! I

Welcome Becca and Soduku!

I didn't think gaming was an addiction either. I already qualified as an alcoholic and was sober in that program; I scoffed at gaming addiction.

But, and this is a big BUT!, gaming did do for me what alcohol ended up doing: I would rather game than do anything else, including work, take care of myself, get good food, get sleep, get good exercise, socialize (I thought I was socializing in the game), and eventually cut myself off from most of my normal life. I also had gaming sessions where I would wake up the next day or two days later with a headache, sore body, and it was very similar to an alcoholic hangover.

But when I quit the gaming last year (for a trial period) I experienced withdrawal symptoms which were unexpected and miserable! Every symptom I had was similar to alcohol withdrawals: headaches, unable to rest or relax, mind jumping from one thought to another, agitation, nervousness, depression, anxiety, a feeling of doom...everything I experienced with alcohol.

I'm convinced gaming can be an addiction, and definitely convinced that I was a gaming addict. I don't need psychiatrists or therapists or the AMA telling me how I felt. It would be nice if these groups would do so, so that our culture would take it seriously, but for me personally, I know it is an addiction.

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Ok Step 1. Powerlessness.

Ok Step 1.

Powerlessness. Yea, obviously. I am completely powerless over the game. Once I start playing, it's not long before I am playing 24x7 and try to fit some sleep in. Also, I have previously quit for several years and I started up again recently. I did not previously quit using a 12 step plan. I just quit because I was too busy in real life to even consider gaming. Now I understand what my AA friends are talking about. I will always be a game addict. There is no such thing as moderate play, limiting my online time, or just "checking out the new version for a few days." I really REALLY want to stop. But I can't. Therefore, I am utterly powerless and addicted and always will be.

Unmanageability. I felt it was an achievement when I was able to get on a 7 hour per night sleep schedule. However, gaming and only leaving time for sleeping is unmanageable. I didn't even realize this was what I was doing because you can multitask while doing the game since there is a lot of waiting time. My mind, however, was always on the game, even when I wasn't at the computer. This is completely an unmanageable way to live.

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So for the first step my

So for the first step my sponsor has started by having me write out all the ways my gaming addiction has affected me - such as consequences financially, time spent, effects on career, relationships, physical health, spiritual connection, mentally, emotionally, life goals, etc. when I finished this task I felt so down..... the amount of opportunities lost, friends and relationships either lost or neglected, people hurt, family I'm not close to, lifetime of isolation and not doing anything, being fat, SOO many things!! It just is so painful knowing I'm 33 and have basically lied in a fantasy world my whole life....

Sponsor has more tasks for me, and that the goal of step 1 is to feel hopeless, because if a true addict we are hopeless. We can never change and get better of our own will power or accord. Then in step 2 hope is to be found.

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Interesting insight into

Interesting insight into Steps 1 & 2, Alan. Honestly connecting with what excessive gaming costs us, with the very real and painful consequences of our gaming seems essential to finding our personal bottom that can become our springboard toward hope and change. Thanks for this.

Acceptance. When I am disturbed, it is because a person, place, thing, or situation is unacceptable to me. I find no serenity until I accept my life as being exactly the way it is meant to be. Nothing happens in God’s world by mistake.  Acknowledge the problem, but live the solution!

dan1
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As I continue to realize

As I continue to realize more and more what my hours of excessive gaming cost me, not to mention the addictive nature of it, I need to hang onto Step 2 as well. This is a great insight for us, and thank you also. I think that the steps never end, that we have to take them over and over.

My thought for the day about this: "Nothing I do today can change the past. Everything I do today changes the future."

I am a recovering computer game and gambling addict. My recovery birthday: On May 6, 2012 I quit games and began working a program of recovery through OLGA No computer games or slot games for me since December 12, 2012. No solitaire games with real cards since June 2013.

Gettingalife
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I agree about the Steps

I agree about the Steps never ending...because we are indeed human...complicated humans. No matter how thoroughly I may work each Step, there's always room for improvement, always more growing to be done, always more life happening. I believe the miracle happens in living the Steps free of addiction. As miraculous as working the Steps for the first time may be, we humans are rarely remade, reborn with one action. Part of my acceptance of life as it is rather than as I would have it is that organic quality that can't be contained, for which there is no magic bullet. In other words, I'm not taking a pill to get over my addiction by working the Steps. I'm learning a new way of living.

Acceptance. When I am disturbed, it is because a person, place, thing, or situation is unacceptable to me. I find no serenity until I accept my life as being exactly the way it is meant to be. Nothing happens in God’s world by mistake.  Acknowledge the problem, but live the solution!

Bill F.
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Hey guys, Newcomer here.  I

Hey guys, Newcomer here.

I gamed from about 6 years old until this last year; I withdrew myself from college because I finally figured out that I couldn't manage my life any more. I haven't gamed for about 3 months now, but I think I was white-knuckling it. At the very least, if I wasn't white-knuckling it, I was certainly in denial that I am a gaming addict. I'm still not sure I beleive that.

The only things I can honestly admit to myself are that I cannot go back to playing video games. I don't need them, I can live without them, and my life can be better because of it.

I'm writing this post hoping that trying to admit my powerlessness over gaming will help reduce the urge to escape that I feel right now. I feel almost panicked. I'm sweaty, tired, on edge, and feel like my head is going to explode and that I just have to get out. That I just have to get away from these feelings.

I've called it Dissociating with the social/addiction worker I talk to. But since I've found Olga two days ago, this feeling to escape has never been stronger. Maybe its because I simply wasn't recognizing how badly I want to get away from how I feel. Maybe its because I'm scared of something and I don't know how to deal with it (and I don't even know what it is. hah!)

As a matter of fact, I feel dizzy right now trying to write this post. My head is swimming more and I feel like I'm about to throw up. It's interesting to me that the only times I think I've felt like this have been when I broke my gaming mouse, a Razer Deathadder, three months ago, and when I uninstalled steam from my computer and deleted all my game cfg backups. There's no way for me to deny I'm somehow sick. I feel it in every part of my body.

Regardless, I'm hoping I can find serenity through posting here. I can't continue to live with this feeling. I need to let go of it somehow, and I really honestly hope I can figure out how here, One day at a time if nothing else. Thanks for letting me share.

Sincerely, Chris

Last game played: April 24th 2014

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CrissCross, I'm so sorry

CrissCross,

I'm so sorry that you are feeling this way, that this is so difficult for you. Hugs.

Most people go into games more and more deeply because the games make them feel better than they do in real life. It's just like heroin or alcohol in that respect. And then after playing a lot, your brain starts to adjust, and that means you need more of your drug (games) to feel better. Eventually your brain adjusts to such an extent that you need the games to feel normal, and in real life you feel like you're in hell.

What can you do right away? Read posts here. Many people do various things. Here are some that have helped some people:

-Do something physical. Get out of the house and into sunlight. Take a walk and a hot bath afterwards.

-Call someone you haven't called in a long time. Just to say hi.

-Come here and read, post, come to a meeting. I know you are already doing this--just keep it up.

-Watch a movie. Choose something you will really like, not just whatever is on TV. It's OK to use some "not-so-great" activities for escape for a little while, just to keep you from going back to the main drug. Kill the big dog first.

-Do some breathing exercises. Breathe slowly, close eyes. Relax your muscles, from the top of your head to the tip of your toes, by concentrating on them one by one and deliberately relaxing them. All this while breathing slowly.

-Write about how you feel. Write about what you are thinking. Cry about it. Scream. (Alone, please. ) Releasing tension in these ways can help. I was 39 before I learned how to really let myself cry, and it is a wonderful thing. It won't kill you to cry for 10 minutes. It will make you feel a lot better, actually. I highly recommend it.

-Find someone you can trust not to laugh at you and tell them about it.

-Write your gaming autobiography. How has gaming played a role in your life? When did you start? How has it negatively impacted your life? Then cry some more. But also write down how grateful you are that you have been able to quit, how proud you are of yourself for quitting. You should be; it's hard. You quit at an early age: your real life is ahead of you.

There are a whole bunch of other things. Other people here have written them. I'm not a religious person but this post is my way of saying a prayer for you. Best wishes.

I am a recovering computer game and gambling addict. My recovery birthday: On May 6, 2012 I quit games and began working a program of recovery through OLGA No computer games or slot games for me since December 12, 2012. No solitaire games with real cards since June 2013.

John of the Roses
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lizwool wrote: ADMISSION
lizwool wrote:

ADMISSION STEP
Membership Requirement
Principles - Honesty and Acceptance

The ONLY requirement for membership, is a desire to quit gaming.

The above statement, that the ADMISSION STEP is a membership requirement should be ammended to indicate that this Step is not a requirement for membership.

imho

"There is little difference in people, but that little difference makes a big difference. The little difference is attitude. The big difference is whether it is positive or negative." --W. Clement Stone

dan1
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It seems the same to me. 

It seems the same to me. If you want to quit, you must think you need to quit and you must have decided to. Thinking you need to quit is honesty and deciding to is acceptance. This is just my perspective; I don't think there's necessarily an inconsistency here. :)

I am a recovering computer game and gambling addict. My recovery birthday: On May 6, 2012 I quit games and began working a program of recovery through OLGA No computer games or slot games for me since December 12, 2012. No solitaire games with real cards since June 2013.

TimC
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New to the site and am

New to the site and am thankful to have found it. Just deleted all my games a few days ago. I need to quit all of these computer games FOR GOOD! I keep thinking I can go back and play "just a little while" or maybe a new game would not be as addictive as my favorites. No way! I'm fooling myself. That is an illusion. I cannot control my gaming any more. I can play 12-15 hours in a row, maybe 48 on weekends. Need to stop. PERIOD. FOREVER.

First started playing two decades ago. Eventually stopped after several years. But last 5-6 years picked up again. Moderation is impossible.

I am a sober member of AA, so I understand how these steps work. I have also used gaming to escape from life, as I once used alcohol.

This addiction has damaged relationships, affected jobs, hobbies and my outlook on life. Previously I could not have imagined life withour alcohol. Now I never want it again. It is time to get these soul-sucking games out of my life next.

Glad to be here.

Free from gaming since Oct 24, 2012

dan1
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Tim, Glad you are here. 

Tim,

Glad you are here. You already understand a lot about addiction, and you have seen the dynamic you have with games. It's great that you took the step to quit.

Take a look at the list of withdrawal symptoms (off of the home page) and enjoy the wealth of information here. Come and post here instead if you feel like you want to play. We have a chat meeting every night at 9 p.m. Eastern US time also.

I look forward to seeing you around. Best wishes.

I am a recovering computer game and gambling addict. My recovery birthday: On May 6, 2012 I quit games and began working a program of recovery through OLGA No computer games or slot games for me since December 12, 2012. No solitaire games with real cards since June 2013.

bebetterhusband
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welcome to olga, lj.

welcome to olga, lj. interesting name choice. please avail yourself of the 9pm est chatroom meetings, to share your experience with the group here. dive into the forums, spend a lot of time here on your recovery. after some time, dedicate yourself to workkng the 12 steps, and ask for a sponsor to help you. hopefully you will be able to save your marriage with recovefing from game addiction. the above is the path to how.

OLGA Home Page: "We advocate and provide a 12-Step Program of recovery. For those who are interested in a formalized meeting approach, we provide both a traditional 12-step program and a modified program for atheists and agnostics." I advocate and use the 12 steps programs, which have helped tens of millions of addicts of all kinds recover.

exazzy
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Very courageous step, Leroy

Very courageous step, Leroy Jenkins. I'm also powerless once I get going, and I also did tremendous damage to those around me hiding and socializing. And there's no way I could do it alone either. Keep coming back, great to see you at the meeting earlier tonight.

Twelve miles into the forest, 12 miles out.
Left my poisonous game July 4, 2012. Left online communities June 4, 2013.

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