I quit Second Life 5 weeks ago.

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FreeSpirit
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I quit Second Life 5 weeks ago.

Hi All. I found this place by some help and have read some threads, questioning if I "belong" here or not. In short, I can tell you that I quit my Second Life gaming about 5 weeks ago. Prior that I spent everything from 10-20 hrs/day online, and at the end I had about 15 hrs/day online. I'm sure you know the story; no sleep, not enough food, no social life etc. Also, I just started my own company in August and that wasn't going very well since I spent so much time on Second Life. Also I was neglecting my husband and our two children :'( and everything in my life except what had to do with my Second Life. ... I was drawn into the "darker" places of the web-community with roleplay and cybersex and my mind got more and more BRAINWASHED.

What helped me to quit was the fact that I'm doing personal therapy and I have a great therapist that finally told me ENOUGH, and I broke down in tears and cried for hours the day that I quit. The following days were hell, I got physically sick and slept most of the time, trying to escape all the symtoms of withdrawl. I was so confused and scared, angry, frustrated...you name it. I tried bargaining with myself and my therapist saying I can't be happy unless I can't have a few hours online each day. I WAS SO SICK! It took about a week until I felt somewhat clearer, and now several weeks later I am so happy I quit, but I also notice my thoughts...That MAYBE I could just go back one time... who would it harm? :-

Nooooo, I can't go back. I needed to find something else. And someone told me of this website. Before I have called my therapist every day, for support, but now she's gone travelling for a month.

I don't think I have realized what a powerful addiction this is. I have addiction in my family and never thought I'd end up in any addiction, neglecting my beautiful children.

I need support and I hope to find it here. Thank you for listening.
FreeSpirit
age 34

John of the Roses
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Re: I quit Second Life 5 weeks ago.

You are correct in assuming that you can't go back, in some sort of moderation. Addiction is a cumulative disease, in that when you start back up after an abstinence, you will be right back where you were in a matter of hours or days! After all your hard work in withdrawl, don't be surprised that you are embarking on a richer life for it! You sound like you have found a good therapist/counselor and we here at OLGA suggest that for anyone having difficulties. Please try and fit one of our online meetings into your hecktic family schedule, it may benefit you in ways you may not realize. Congratulations on finding OLGA and welcome, you are definitely not alone here!

"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

Gamersmom
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Re: I quit Second Life 5 weeks ago.

Welcome, freespirit. Plenty of support here.

"Small service is true service while it lasts.  Of humblest friends, bright creature! scorn not one

The daisy, by the shadow that it casts,

Protects the lingering dewdrop from the sun." -------William Wordsworth

J. DOe
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Re: I quit Second Life 5 weeks ago.
"FreeSpirit " wrote:

Hi All. I found this place by some help and have read some threads, questioning if I "belong" here or not. In short, I can tell you that I quit my Second Life gaming about 5 weeks ago.

I offer a gracious welcome to OLGA to you, FreeSpirit. A Although I have never even tried Second Life (my "drugs" of choice was just regular video games, mostly 3-D Pinball and Minesweeper), I have noticed over the last 7 months that I have been here an increasing number of members who have problems with Second Life joining. A As such, I believe that since you are seeking help with overcoming your addiction problem with Second Life, then you most definitely do "belong" here.

"FreeSpirit " wrote:

I need support and I hope to find it here.

It sounds like you have already made a great start by quitting over a month ago, realizing the effect that Second Life has on you, knowing that you cannot go back to playing, having the support of a great therapist and seeking additional support from here. A In addition to posting and receiving replies, like you are doing now, there are other support options available here such as reading other posts, attending on-line meetings (a schedule is in the Shout box on the right of the Home page), following the 12-steps program, etc. A I wish you the best of luck in getting whatever support that you require to continue staying "Second Life free" and getting your life back in order (e.g., working in your company, being with your husband and two children, etc.).

- John O.

[em]Carpe Diem![/em] (Seize the Day!)

gsingjane
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Re: I quit Second Life 5 weeks ago.

Good morning Free Spirit, and welcome, too. The others are completely right that you can't go back to controlled or moderated playing. Maybe someday in the far distant future... but for sure, not now. What has happened, IMO, is that as the five weeks have gone by, most of the really nasty parts of your compulsive playing have somewhat faded from memory. What remains is that golden glow of nostalgia... where you have forgotten all the bad and painful parts and remember only the good (you've been through childbirth, need I say more?). I almost picture it like a little demon perched on your shoulder, whispering in your ear, "it's okay... a little bit won't hurt... just this once... it'll feel SO good..." As John says, though, addiction is cumulative and if you listen to the voice now, pretty soon it won't be whispering any more, it will be screaming and guess what? you're in for a relapse. And as you say, you've got a lot to lose. Also, and please understand I am not trying to be moralistic or judgmental here, but even online adultery isn't good for most marriages. I have read several posts from other users that SL seems to be particularly conducive to people forming extra-marital relationships, and that sometimes these continue IRL... and even if they don't, they involve serious emotional bonds that can even rival those of an actual marriage. I would try hard not to go there. It just sounds like it would be incredibly tempting and very much deter you from investing in and connecting with your real husband and family. As I say, I am not judging you... everyone's marriage is different and people make the arrangements they make (and it's none of my business) but, especially when you are working so hard to return to your real life, it probably isn't a good thing to risk getting sucked back into a fantasy world like SL. Please keep coming back. There are people here who care, and want to help. Jane in CT

FreeSpirit
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Re: I quit Second Life 5 weeks ago.

Thank you ALL for the welcome and replies. And gsingjane I did not see any of what you wrote as judging, I see it as support! I had "quit" SL twice before and my longest break was 2 months away from it. I remember the last time going back online, in august, thinking I wouldn't spend so much time online. I believe it went down hill very fast, and I clearly remember looking at the clock around 3.30 am, realizing I had been on for 8 hrs straight without getting up for a drink of water or anything! Yes gsingjane, it was a struggle. It was painful and it felt as if my brain was kidnapped and I had lost all control. It's terrible how it can get so far, and yet I wasn't able to quit although I broke down several times in the end, being exhausted and miserable. :( So thank you for reminding me about memories fading. And I realize I'm still, maybe, in some sort of denial about the whole thing. Like HOW CAN YOU BE ADDICTED TO A COMPUTER? I just have to keep reminding myself of these things, and NOT go back. Sometimes I have thought of actually throwing out the computer, thinking I might get stuck in some other chat place etc... but nothing has been as bad as SL for me (with all the dark stuff that came with it). So I hope that this place, OLGA, will help me in many ways. It's just a little strange to be here...acknowledging that I do have a problem. So again, thanks for your support, and I'm glad to have found this place. I'm in European timezone but hope to catch an online meeting. /free

Allandra
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Re: I quit Second Life 5 weeks ago.

I quit Second Life in August and it was difficult at first. This site and its members REALLY helped me. They supported me even when I openly admitted that I did not want to quit and were there for me when my husband gave the ultimatum of SL or real life. I can tell you it DOES get easier. Like you, I was attracted to the darker side, but have come out into the light. Keep coming here. We are behind you 100%.

Gamersmom
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Re: I quit Second Life 5 weeks ago.

Welcome back allandra. Glad to see you're still out of SL and that things are going well. Thanks for coming back to help support others. We are starting to see more SL addicts here.

"Small service is true service while it lasts.  Of humblest friends, bright creature! scorn not one

The daisy, by the shadow that it casts,

Protects the lingering dewdrop from the sun." -------William Wordsworth

Allandra
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Re: I quit Second Life 5 weeks ago.

Thanks, Gamersmom. And than ks to everyone on this board who made me realize what I was throwing away while trying to cling to an online fantasy. I am forever in "y'all's" debt. :)

FreeSpirit
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Re: I quit Second Life 5 weeks ago.

Hi Allandra, thank you for your posting. I did not "want" to quit either at the time really. I had broken down early that morning and kept sending SMS to my therapist since I was too miserable to talk to her. When I finally DID call her I just cried and cried and couldn't talk. I was so exhausted from the last days binging in SL. She knew I was struggling and we had talked about my addiction for weeks and still I wasn't able to quit. Finally during the phoneconversation she said "It's time now, you need to quit and I want you to call me everyday"... ... So, I was mad at her and whoever else I could think of, and I did go online two or three times to give away all my inventory and say goodbye to people before finally deleting my account a few weeks later. The phonecall each day helped me to keep my commitment of staying off the game until it became easier by itself. I do miss my SL life. I miss my beautiful avatar and all that came with it, but I don't miss the pain and frustration and the addiction that came with it, so I am staying away from it. Take care and keep sharing. Free

Allandra
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Re: I quit Second Life 5 weeks ago.

Free, I understand completely. When I left SL I felt like I was leaving a virtual life that was in many ways better than my real life. What I didn't see, though, was how SL was feeding my discontent and contributing to a depression that I am still fighting. I realize that I have real life issues that must be addressed and not "escaped" in a fantasy world. You are not alone in this. We are going to be ok. :)

lauramc
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Re: I quit Second Life 5 weeks ago.

So glad you have this place and your therapist as support. How cool is that?

FreeSpirit
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Re: I quit Second Life 5 weeks ago.

Hey laura! Yes, the support isn't bad. And my therapist is not of the traditional kind, I'm doing alternative therapy and in a long training and it has really helped me in my life battling addictive people :D and addiction to gaming myself. When it comes to meetings I don't know if I will make it due to time difference but... maybe it'll work out at sometime. (hmmmm, good excuse huh? Had it been my old addictive self I would've sat up all night playing on SL. Yikes.) Free

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Re: I quit Second Life 5 weeks ago.

Where are you again? (If you don't mind me asking)

FreeSpirit
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Re: I quit Second Life 5 weeks ago.

I am in Sweden laura. Wouldn't at all mind being someplace warmer, but running after kids make you pretty warm too. :D

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Hi Freespirit, I am reading

Hi Freespirit, I am reading your posting over a year later. I closed my SL account this morning. Like you, it was becoming excessive. I had to confess to my husband that I was doing dark, untidy things online with strangers. I was ignoring the house, the kids, the pet, keeping in touch with friends on a real life basis. I spent 8-10 hours on Second Life and the whole day would be wasted before I knew where the day went. The house has never looked more disheveled. I will post my own topic later but I wanted to thank you for sharing your experiences. Although I am only newly terminated from my second life - life, its a difficult addiction to break and I had no idea I would be feeling so many conflicting feelings even if I know I am doing the right thing by walking away. If you are online any time soon, I'd like to know how you are doing nowdays.

FreeSpirit
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Dear ColdTurkeyGirl, Welcome

Dear ColdTurkeyGirl, Welcome to Olganon and congrats to closing your account. I know it's not that easy. It's an ongoing process for me and I constantly have to work on my recovery. I have 5 months game-free from SL now, but the cravings and thoughts of SL have been pretty bad lately. It REALLY helps to come here and read, support, chat. I find that gaming for me, is the thought that I can become happier in my life if I go game. Happier inside. I try to escape from boredom, pain, sadness, stress or whatever! And fact is that gaming isn't working for me, because it becomes so excessive. Welcome to share here and pm me anytime. I'm looking forward to hear from you.

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Glad to hear that you are

Glad to hear that you are still off the game :) I had no idea SL was so addictive :o

An hour of gaming is an hour wasted.

FreeSpirit
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I cancelled my SL account

I cancelled my SL account just now. I must admit there's a sting in my stomach.... But right before I was going through all the negative side effects of my gaming. All the lost time with my children, friends, with ME. I neglected myself the most. I will continue to work on my real life and a game free one. Now I have at least 5 months game-free. I wish I knew the exact date, but part of me was afraid to get stuck on the date...since I relapsed last time a few days before my 6 months.... Today I will write a list about all the things I want to do in my life. And what I enjoy doing daily. And I will put it up in my home. That includes a big note with: MAKING A DIFFERENCE and being kind, loving and helpful to others. A bad thing with accounts, is that they go "on hold" for a few months so they don't get completely cancelled. To me it's still a definite and I've never gotten an account back. But it's a sign how badly the gaming-industry are trying to keep us coming back too. I'd rather just stay here at OLGA.

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Yes they use such strategies

Yes they use such strategies to keep people dependent on their games and stay hooked. Kind of makes those who have "awakened" to the whole idea stay away for good :) Congratulations. Deleting your account is a major step to the right direction :D

An hour of gaming is an hour wasted.

Gamersmom
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Congratulations on canceling

Congratulations on canceling your account, Free.

"Small service is true service while it lasts.  Of humblest friends, bright creature! scorn not one

The daisy, by the shadow that it casts,

Protects the lingering dewdrop from the sun." -------William Wordsworth

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congrats Free! that is

congrats Free! that is wonderful news. I couldn't agree more about taking good care of you. Us moms I think tend to overlook ourselves way too much. When i started doing little things for me such as, bubble baths, polishing my toenails, exercising etc I began to feel so much better about myself and the world. You are a beautiful woman who deserves a huge pat on her back and a healthy life. :grouphug:

Take the first step in faith. You donaEU(tm)t have to see the whole staircase, just take the first step.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
Laughter gives us distance. It allows us to step back from an event, deal with it and then move on.
~Bob Newhart
The minute you alter your perception of yourself and your future, both you and your future begin to change. ~Marilee Zdenek

sladdiction
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It's hard to add anything to

It's hard to add anything to what has been said all ready. I'm joyful celebrating for those of you who have escaped the online world. I'm still very much in Second Life, and am finally coming to the point where I REALLY need to end it for the sake of my own sanity, my family and my job. At one point I even convinced myself that I was helping people in there, and that I had a role to play. Boy, was that a mistake! For one thing, I found that some had SERIOUS mental challenges that I was not even remotely qualified to deal with. Also, I'm constantly reminded of the friend I knew who was a lifeguard. He said that you should never directly touch a person thrashing around in the water drowning. That you should always hand them something to grab hold of. The danger of touching them is that they can sometimes overpower you and drag you down with them. I won't go on in this post about what I have done and felt in the real world as a result of my SL addiction, but I will tell you that it hasn't been good. When you look at these things and say that these are things you would have NEVER believed you could have felt or done before your addiction, then you have probably fallen down the rabbit hole and need a life line to escape. The only good thing I can say about my online experience is that it has made me look at my life and actually "think" about dealing with real issues that are there. Before SL, it was "keeping busy" or sometimes booze that glossed over these issues for me. It's an awful way to do it, but I guess SL was my way of hitting bottom before having to deal with them. Please keep up the post. I'm gaining so much inspiration!!! Maybe the time to quit is close.

Addicted to SL

FreeSpirit
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hi sladdiction. welcome to

hi sladdiction. welcome to OLGA. WARM welcome even :) I know there is hope and that it's possible to get your real life back and work on that and ENJOY it. Keep sharing and you have support here.

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Thanks FreeSprit. You and

Thanks FreeSprit. You and others on here are inspiring me. Thank you SOOO much! It means a lot to me that you are willing to share. Please know that it does make a difference. I just hope I have the strength to quit. I just don't know if I quit, what I'll go back to? I need to face RL and work hard on it. I need the strength to do so.

Addicted to SL

FreeSpirit
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sladdiction, I didn't have

sladdiction, I didn't have the strength to quit. I came to the point when I had no other choice, if I wanted to ...survive. We all come to a point when we're willing to do anything, to be game free. It is about willingness. Have you read thru the steps? And... there's plenty of strength when we do it together. *hug*

Allandra2
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Congrats on cancelling your

Congrats on cancelling your account, Free. It isn't easy and I know what you are going through. Know that you are not alone and that it DOES get easier with time.

parris
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My Problem: I am addited to

My Problem: I am addited to playing Second Life, and I want very much to stop playing. I have played for almost a year and have serious problems. Most of all it is hurting my job and myself. It is not possible to continue my job like this. I am married and have children, but I have been able to hide my addiction from them. I use my computer for work, and need to be online there. I have uninstalled the game several times, but I have always installed it again after a few days. I just found out I can cancel my account. I am considering doing that, but have not done it yet. That means I will delete my avatar. Is deleting the account a good idea, and/or deleting the inventory. Stop Playing: I know it will be difficiult to stop. I know I have to stop it myself, but I was hoping I would get some support here. I need suggestions about how to stop. (I will uninstall the game again right now). And I hope for help with understanding how On-line Gamers Anonymous can help me. Why it is difficult to stop: When I try to stop using Second Life, I am often not able to concentrate on work, I often start reading newpapers, or wasting my time on something else. I feel I still waste my time, because I am usually at work, and feel I really should work. Then I feel I might as well play the game. That is when I have start to use it again. I guess I just have to expect that the first period will be difficult, and hope that the urge to start playing will decrease slowly, and I am able to get back to a balanced life again.

Parris
aEUoeI know God will not give me anything I can't handle. I just wish He didn't trust me so much.aEU

sladdiction
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Hey Paris. When I quit, I

Hey Paris. When I quit, I came to this olganon site everytime I had an urge to get on SL. Reading these posts, posting and writing a blog all helped.

Addicted to SL

John of the Roses
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parris wrote: My Problem:I
parris wrote:

My Problem:I have been able to hide my addiction from them.

So you are lying by omission to your loved ones? Thats a hard road to walk. I have done it several times myself, trying to quit a game. There comes a point where you cant remember all your lies, and you may feel like your loved ones know all about what it is that you are hiding from them.

parris wrote:

Why it is difficult to stop: When I try to stop using Second Life, I am often not able to concentrate on work,

Of course when you stop an addiction there will be a period of adjustment. There will be mental stress, like you mention but there are also other factors involved. For example there will be a feeling of letting your SL friends down, of running away from SL. This is entirely normal, but remember you have a loving & devoted family to turn to in this time. You will experience a physical craving for the game, which you kind of mention. The initial period lasts about three weeks max. During this time you will feel like you need more sleep, and maybe that there is something missing from your life and you need to fill that void. This is your grief talking. You are dumping SL for REAL LIFE. There will obviously be a period where you will feel a loss. Go with it & experience those feelings because they are REAL. It is difficult to stop and deleting your account and avatars is the only real way to do it. The choice is yours, keep on lying to your family or get down to RL and quit once and for all.

"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

Desire to Stop
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Nicely written John!

Nicely written John!

Cheers, Desire to Stop
ALL quoted text (unless otherwise stated) comes from the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous (with wording sometimes changed only to make it more relevant for gaming addiction). I will include page numbers.

Hoping & praying for a measure of recovery for all of us today.

parris
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Thank you for helping me. I

Thank you for helping me. I need someone to tell me these things.

john of the roses wrote:

So you are lying by omission to your loved ones? Thats a hard road to walk.

I have lied to my loved ones. I am not proud of that. SL (Second Life) is full of sex. Even though I never let myself have any love relationships, I had online sex. I really love my real life partner, and I was stupid. I must admit I never thought about telling my partner about this. I still felt my first priority was family, SL was second priority, and work was last priority. My real life relationship has always been good, so I usually always felt it was more interesting to be with them than in SL. I feel the even bigger problem is that I have neglected my job. The relationship to my partner and children is fortunately not very damaged. When I was spending normal time with my family and a lot of time on my sl-addiction I started to neglect work. I usually played at work, not so often at home, even though it happened too. Actually my partner just told me that I have seemed to have more energy for my family life now, than I had before. I was a workaholic for several years before I started playing the online game. I have an interesting but stressful job. I worked very hard and was very stressed for several years. During these years I was obsessed about work and not able to stop thinking about it. It is not an excuse for my game addiction, but I was burnt out when I started got addicted to sl. I had been very psychologically and emotionally tired for a long time when I started to play the game. Playing the online game was an escape from my job, not from my family. During my period of addition my job problems have accumulated. Of course playing the game solved no problem, it gave me more problems, and I got even more incentives to escape. I have neglected the people I respect and work with. I made a lot of promises I never kept. I have lost self respect, my life is out of balance, and I am in a situation where I have to stop because of work. In the beginning when I played I constantly thought about what to do next in the game. Now I am constantly thinking about how to end my game. I really hate the addiction, and I guess that is a good sign.

john of the roses wrote:

It is difficult to stop and deleting your account and avatars is the only real way to do it.

Of course, your advice is very logical. Why would I not want to delete the account, if really want to stop? I hesitate because it took a long time to build. I also see that SL offer to open up previously cancelled accounts. That worries me. I am thinking that I can change the password to something I will not be able to remember. In addition I can link the account to a new email address, and then delete the email address. Then it will be eve n more difficult to open the cancelled account, even if SL try to. In the beginning when I played I constantly thought about what to do next in the game. Now I am constantly thinking about how to end my game. I really hate the addiction, and I guess that is a good sign. Your advice is very interesting. I have been thinking about deleting the avatars for a long time. Maybe I will do that soon. Today I deleted what I have built online, and I got rid of the land. The important inventory I did not delete, I gave away to SL friends. I feel it is a good start. Now I feel I have nothing I need to do in sl any more . I never believed my online friends really needed me, or that they were more important than my family. I hope I never play Second Life again.

Parris
aEUoeI know God will not give me anything I can't handle. I just wish He didn't trust me so much.aEU

Desire to Stop
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I know deletion is very

I know deletion is very hard. For my part, I couldn't do it myself, not in the opening days of withdrawal. But when I left, I didn't do any formal goodbyes, no planned give-aways of my stuff. I knew if I logged back in to do any of that I might not stop playing again. After a week of no gameplay I had a friend delete every character on both of my accounts. While it is true that my characters can be "revived" after a deletion, it's one more step to go through. There was something very freeing about knowing that my characters "in all their glory" were deleted with full banks, everything. Deleting the game, nuking it from your C files, destroying game discs are all very good things.

Cheers, Desire to Stop
ALL quoted text (unless otherwise stated) comes from the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous (with wording sometimes changed only to make it more relevant for gaming addiction). I will include page numbers.

Hoping & praying for a measure of recovery for all of us today.

Steve235
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I just read all of these

I just read all of these comments. When I got to sladdiction's first post it explained exactly where I am. I have my own chain of post, but thank you all for your inspiration and if sladdciyio has any advice please let me know.

parris
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Joined: 08/20/2009 - 5:58am
I just made it impossible

I just made it impossible for me to use my SL game acount again. Instead of cancelling the account I changed the password to someting the is impossible to remember. In addition I changed the avatar's email adress to a random email name (that is impossible to remember), so that it would be impossible to find the password. I did it this way beacause I see SL offers to open cancelled accounts. Doing it this way I believe it will be impossible for me to use my avatar again.

My mind is so addicted to the game that I think of it constantly, and I hate that. It is telling me that I just need to do one small thing before I quit, but fortunately it is not an option any more. I keep telling myself that any project in real life is better than the game that makes me act like a fool. I want to start some really good real live projects now, to get my life in balance. And I will look closer at the next steps in the 12-step program

Parris
aEUoeI know God will not give me anything I can't handle. I just wish He didn't trust me so much.aEU

cinematicescape
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Last seen: 4 years 6 months ago
OLGA member
Joined: 11/27/2014 - 10:59am
Hey there, I to have felt

Hey there,

I to have felt the dark side of SL. I felt like I was living two lives and at one point I was so brain washed that I negeleted everything about myself and got so lost in the world I lost myself. It was a horrible time so I left and I felt amazing. I got into great shape and felt happy. I was sadly dragged back by a friend and got encompassed in it again but decided to leave this morning. It went from being an escape to me dealing with dramas and mistrusting people who didn't believe me. Its just a lot of drama and takes away from your real life. Im so glad I found this group because I dont want to go back,I dont. I want to be done,I dont like how encompessed I let myself get into the game,this isnt me. Im not a gamer and I dont know how I tripped up. I was even convined to make a furry avatar....We are all in this together,support for support. Stay Strong

Pamylla Allen
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Last seen: 2 years 4 months ago
OLGA member
Joined: 06/19/2017 - 9:31pm
A ten-year member of Second Life today...and I quit!

I kept my username for this site, though.  For my own sanity, I'm not going back.  It brought out the worst in me.  I'm too old for that now.

wazzapp
wazzapp's picture
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Last seen: 1 year 4 months ago
OLGA memberOLGA moderator
Joined: 01/04/2015 - 10:59am
Congratulations! And keep

Congratulations! And keep posting :) Remember you can always connect with other gaming addicts if you feel you need that. There are voice meetings on CGAA.

 

Wish u the best <3

Never alone, go to meetings <3 Mumble voice meetings on cgaa are great, see you there <3

 

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