My Story: Recovering from Imvu Addiction

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Anima
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My Story: Recovering from Imvu Addiction

This is a long story, but I will try to give the short version. I was in an rp imvu relationship (biker rp) for a few months with this guy. We kept it on imvu mostly but we did eventually exchange skype info. We never cammed, but we did voice chat a few times and I fell in love with him. We got married on imvu and even had a child there. And for me, thats a funny thing because I was always one of those people who thought marriage and kids was a silly thing to do on imvu (I was mostly there for djing until I met him). I didnt mean to, but I really did fall in love with him and he would tell me everyday all these sweet things and how much he loved me. Then one day on skype he was acting weird and finally confessed to me that he was lying to me. He said he really did not love me, he thought I'm a great girl and he cares about me but not love. He said he didnt want to hurt me so he just pretended to love me because he felt heartless to reject me. Smh.

To make a long story short, his best friend told me that he confessed to her that he's in love with her (told her this a few weeks before and she was just watching us feeling sorry for me knowing he wasnt really in love with me). So it went back and forth this way, him telling me that's not true that he doestn love her and her telling me different. I was really hurt because without knowing it I had given him my heart. So I decided to leave imvu. Of course everybody was trying to talk me out of it. I stayed away for 3 days and then one of my friends who kept nagging at me finally got me to come back. She said, dont do anymore rp, just dj and have fun with your friends and forget about him. So I 'divorced' him and tried to do what my friend said. After lots of tears and anger me and him finally had a talk which led to some 'rp sex' causing me to get my hopes up thinking that maybe he wanted to get back together. Instead, he avoided me for 2 days and then suddenly put 'seeing someone' on his profile with another girls name there. A girl I had never even seen before. She joined his rp and changed her last name to his. That was it for me, I just broke down. I put up a message telling everyone that I was going to quit and disable my account.

Of course everyone freaked out trying to talk me out of it. He suddenly came into one of my rooms begging me to stay. I was honest with him and told him I was in love with him and its too hard for me to see him everyday. He tried to convince me to give him my account and let him take care of it until I decide to come back but in the end I really did disable it. People were sending me messages everyday saying its not the same without me and then suddenly I got an email from imvu saying that I could get my account back if I click on this link. One of my close friends on imvu told me that her account got hacked and she couldn't see her boyfriend on there. So suddenly I got the idea to click the link and get my account back and give it to her. I had an alt account lying around somewhere and she convinced me to get on it and hang out with her one day to play music. Nobody else knew who I was so I was able to hide on it, but being on that account I cound not stop the urge to look at my ex's profile, which only set me back and brought back the anger and the hurt. So I came up with this idea to pretend I was seeing someone else to make him jealous. I got my account back from my friend (later she admitted that her account wasn't hacked, she just wanted to get me to come back) and I changed my profile putting that I was seeing someone. Of course everyone was happy I was back and I resumed djing with friends. But then 3 days back in the game, I just realized to myself that I didnt want to do this anymore. I didnt' want to pretend I was ok and live this fake life anymore. The truth is I had fallen in love with this guy who I would never have irl (he was from another country). He had made it clear to me that he didnt' love me; the one thing I knew was that he liked me a little and liked having rp sex, but he was so quick to get someone new...I was tired of being angry and paranoid and hopeful and sad all wrapped in one. I decided to focus on rl and find someone irl.

Before I fell in love with him I was the type of person who thought imvu relationships were silly and that I woud never fall in love on imvu. Well I was trapped with all these feelings, seeing him on skype and imvu was so hard. So about 3 days ago, this time without telling anyone, I gave my account away to a trusted friend. He changed the password and I toldhim he coud do whatever he wanted with it. I disabled my alt account as well. Being away from imvu has helped me and each day that I'm away I feel stronger, but there is still a part of me that feels sad whenever my ex messages me on skype. I find myself wondering if he ever really felt anything for me besides occasional jealousy and some lust. But actions speak louder than words and I know obsessing over him wont help anything. He is still there in that rp world, and I dont want any part of it. I want to focus on real. I'm proud of myself for leaving, but now I'm just trying to forget this guy and get some self-respect. Sorry for the long ramble x.x

AdsumErgoSum
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My advice for you would be

My advice for you would be to stay far away from triggers that make you want to get back into online gaming/RPing. Try and take a break from computers/skype/messaging and focus on other activities that do not involve any of this. I know it's difficult at first, especially if you've been playing so long that most of your relationships are with other players, but the sooner you step back, the less painful the recovery process will be.

"Strange as my circumstances were, the terms of this debate are as old and commonplace as man; much the same inducements and alarms cast the die for any tempted and trembling sinner; and it fell out with me, as it falls with so vast a majority of my fellows, that I chose the better part and was found wanting in the strength to keep to it."

SuperTom64
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Never have online

Never have online realationship been in that situation where I had a online gf. I dicided to take a break, so she cheated on me. Online dating just messes up friendships. So never try doing it just do it in real life just experience because it is the right thing to do. :)

Maggie
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Hi Anima, I could relate to

Hi Anima,

I could relate to your love story, I also fell in love with someone online in the game. I know what it felt like to go through this, very hard...I cried alot at first, it felt like someone just stabbed me multiple times in the chest and still the pain was almost unbareable. I loved him so so much, I missed so so much, I just could not let him go.....he was the love of my life at the time. At times the feeling was so intense that I was ready to give up eveyrthing in my real life just to be with him (FYI, I am married now for 12 years and this 12 year relationship just were not enough to stop this feeling)......It took everything I got just to keep my brain straight and to keep reminding myself to do the right thing for others around me including my husband and my family.

I was ashame to get caught in this love affair that I never wanted to engage in the first place. Despite my best effort to stay away from him, I just could not help the fact that I could NOT stay away from him. He gave me strength, he made me smile, and he was my brave hero. It felt so good just to be around him. He was so wonderful, so smart, so kind (always went out of his way to help others and always put other's need before his), so brave (never once I smelled his FEAR in the battle field, this man had no FEAR), so bright...I was so in love with him. So I know what it felt like to lose someone I loved BUT please hang in there....thing will get better...just go easy on myself (it is not your fault to love someone)...the feeling will go away given enough time away from him, that is a PROMISE that my Lord told me! Today I feel so much better, I don't miss him as much anymore. He was just a friend and a memory of the past.

Coupling this feeling and the withdrawal symptoms of the game, I relapsed a couple time because I wanted to see him and wanted to play the game with him. I knew I could not quit the game on my own until I found Olga community. I have managed to stay game-free since then. The program works if you work it because you are worth it! I also created a personal blog to share with newcomers, just click on below's link. Please let me know if you have any questions.

http://olganon.org/?q=node/41941

Hugs,

Maggie

It's good to have goals and dreams, but while you're waiting for things to change, waiting for promises to come to pass, don't be discontent with where you are. Learn to enjoy the season that you're in--Pastor Joel Osteen

Anima
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Thank you for the relplies

Thank you for the relplies and for the link, Maggie. Each day I feel better, altho earlier this morning I had the urge to make a new account just to check what everone is doing x.x. I went outside and played with my dog a little to distract myself and thankfully I didnt give in. One of my friends who kept trying to convince me to stay has stopped asking me, which I'm grateful for, but yesterday on skype, my ex felt the need to tell me how his current rp girlfriend played a song that I used to play, that it reminded him of me. He was flirting a little with me too and instead of getting butterflies like I always do around him, I just laughed to myself and rolled my eyes. Deep down inside I think there are still some feelings for him but I am getting over him with each day that passes. Not being able to check his profile definitely helps with my recovery; out of sight out of mind.

I connected with some rl friends I had neglected before and that felt really good. It's weird how so much time has passed since I've started playing this game. It's like I pushed everyone from my rl out and just focused on my virtual life. Two years of my life wasted, spending my own money making my avatar look good, and for what? I have nothing to show for it in real life. The better my virtual life got, the worse my real life was. I let myself go physically, sitting in front of my computer for hours not even taking a break to eat, sometimes missing work so I could stay online. And then suddenly the day my ex confessed to me that he didn't love me...it's like my whole world came tumbling down like a huge slap in the face to wake me up. I should have left the day he told me that, but I listened to all my imvu friends and stayed for them. But now, after reading the experiences of others I realize that I'm not alone and that I can't worry about my gaming friends anymore. I have to be in real life now and take care of myself.

AdsumErgoSum
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I'm glad to see you're

I'm glad to see you're taking control of your life again Anima. I, too, experienced something similar to what you described. When I stopped playing, I was immediately contacted by in-game friends whom I knew for years convincing me to go back. When they realized I had no intention of going back to the game, they never contacted me again.

The truth is video game addicts only have time for whichever friends are playing the same game they are playing at the time, if you're not playing their game anymore, they aren't going to take time away from their addiction to spend time with you. I know this because I was the same way when I was hooked. All my time was devoted to the game and/or friends who played the game. I never had time for friends outside of the game.

Like I said before, the sooner you disconnect yourself from everything that reminds you of your addiction and get back to focusing on yourself, the smoother your recovery will be.

"Strange as my circumstances were, the terms of this debate are as old and commonplace as man; much the same inducements and alarms cast the die for any tempted and trembling sinner; and it fell out with me, as it falls with so vast a majority of my fellows, that I chose the better part and was found wanting in the strength to keep to it."

Maggie
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There are a few old sayings

There are a few old sayings that I used to read every day to ease my pain and suffering:

1. If it means to be, it will be.

2. If you love someone, you have to let them go.

3. It is better to love than not to love

It is not my fault to fall in love with someone and I am grateful for the experience. I have learned to take care of myself better and thanks to the book of "the language of letting go" by Melody Beattie.

It's good to have goals and dreams, but while you're waiting for things to change, waiting for promises to come to pass, don't be discontent with where you are. Learn to enjoy the season that you're in--Pastor Joel Osteen

Maggie
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I am glad you are doing much

I am glad you are doing much better Anima. Hang in there, come and join the daily meeting if you can make it, I found it very helpful. Let me know if you have any questions, everyone is really great here.

Hugs,

Maggie

It's good to have goals and dreams, but while you're waiting for things to change, waiting for promises to come to pass, don't be discontent with where you are. Learn to enjoy the season that you're in--Pastor Joel Osteen

dontellitgood
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I too suffered from an

I too suffered from an addiction with IMVU. I started using back when I was on maternity leave with my one child. I have already been suffering with mental illness such as depression, adhd, and anxiety which has caused me problems with socializing with real people in the first place. As soon as I went into IMVU I was hooked. The atmosphere of real people from all corners of the world that don't judge, and if they do you shut them off. IMVU is like an open arm of comfort for people like me that have difficulties making and keeping friends in real life. My boyfriend met me at the time in my life that I was intending to use to be single and go to school and start a career but instead I let myself get pregnant with him and put everything else on hold which didn't help with my illnesses since I was frustrated about the timing of becomming a parent. Imvu was my total escape. Not only did I find friendships there, but a sexual release with people that had the same types of desires. My boyfriend just didn't fill that gap the way my online friends did. Soon I met someone who got me interested in skyping with him and wound up with a dirty skype conversation that my boyfriend ended up reading which caused a lot of fighting and ended with me shutting off imvu forever. Until a month or so ago when I went back in deciding that I could do it innocently this time and just chat about non-sexual things. I did end up meeting sexual people again who do sex rp in a public way which I did partake in for the most part. Also this time around was more exposed to the DJing thing which is a lot of fun and very addicting as well. The thing was that I met a couple of people who I am extremely compatible with. People that I could easily fall in love with if I was available for that type of intimacy. The wall that was in place due to my relationship frustrated me with the friendships, because I didn't advance, and neither did they, though there was a loving and also sexual connection between the friends that I made. I recently had to shut off imvu again because my bf can't stop fighting about it. So I've decided to invest in my relationship full time because my boyfriend is not happy with the amount of time I spend on the computer chatting with my other friends instead of hanging out with him. I resent him for getting in the way of my freedom to make friends outside of our relationship. I don't know if it's reasonable for me to resent him for this. I don't even know how to end this story. Just wanted to share my experience of IMVU and why I have found myself uninstalling it and feeling very much like wanting to reinstall it and log in, and it's a huge challenge to sit here and not log on. :( Right now I am giving my RL relationship a shot without IMVU in the background to see if we are really compatible. I believe I've used IMVU as an escape, not that the escape has made me love him less. But maybe I am wrong and that is how severe the addiction is.

benek
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Hi Donttell, Welcome to OLGA

Hi Donttell,

Welcome to OLGA and thanks for sharing your story.

You seem to have some questions about whether or not you have a gaming addiction, and the extent of the problems it's caused you. OLGA's diagnostic tests (particularly the second one) could help clarify those questions: http://www.olganon.org/?q=self_tests_on_gaming_addiction

I think it's great you've made the decision to uninstall and try to live game-free. I decided to quit games 73 days ago and it was the best decision I've made in years. We are ready and willing to support you in that decision here at OLGA.

I recommend coming to one of our chat meetings, at 3pm and 9pm EST every day.

FiyaPurpla
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I knew how you felt . I got

I knew how you felt . I got the same thing happened to me too :')

Andrew_Doan
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Asides from the addiction

Asides from the addiction component, organized crime, pimps and gangs are luring people into 'fantasy romances' and then luring them into face-to-face encounters with the sole purpose of trapping and coercing people into sex slavery where they are forced to perform 14-18 tricks daily and then service the pimp or gang members after. The gangs and pimps keep all the money! 5 prostitutes generate $900,000 annually for the gangs and pimps.

Please be careful and NEVER meet your role-play sex partner in real life. Your life may depend on it!

I know this because I have been briefed by Million Kids as they work with law enforcement to deal with the millions of kids coerced into sex slavery, many by methods of role-play as the victims' fantasy lover to entrap their victims.

Andrew Doan MD PhD

My Videos: Internet gaming disorder is real & my story 

*The views expressed are of the author's and do not necessarily reflect the official policy of the U.S. Navy or Department of Defense.

callisto7777
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I too can relate. I got

I too can relate. I got involved with this daddy dom on there. he was very attentive and asked me to marry him but he was controlling and manilupative. he was mean and every time I turned around some of his exes or some girl was coming in to his club saying stuff and he would boot and block on imvu. I loved him so much and we would break up and get back together over period of 5 months. I was gone for a few weeks off of there and kept my fb for games up and he asked me to come back after his break up with new gf( this happened like a week after our breakup) he professed to love me so friggin much. so after few days of her stalking us i went to bed one night after him telling me he loved me so much and then woke up to get on and saw he had gotten back with her. during al this time he has other girls sending hiim pictures, sexy ones , demanding I did, every few days.,wascheating with ones he supposed to have blocked. his fettish is mostly women under age of 35 but his new gf is 22 and hes meeting her in rl in few weeks. hes 47 and hes very jealous, i fear for her, bc he goes off really easily . im blocked now after she made up story about me and i think he makes them up cause she told me as much . i cant seem to get over him, constantly think of him, he makes u feel special and is giving and thats how he lures women in.

callisto7777
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I started out on yoville and

I started out on yoville and then graduated to imvu. worst decision I made. was to escape reality and I met this smooth talker daddy dom., and i became his and he was controlling, manipulative adn told me over and over how much he loved me, and i became his wife. my gut told me something was wrong, but i couldnt stay away from him and i fell hard. and still love him though hes moved on to a 22 yo , hes 47, i was 33. he was very generous, fun, took me nice places there , made me stuff, but he insisted on tucking me in at night , which meant generally kinky sex. , on phone. I had to let him know where i was all the time. he cheated though he never admited it, but countless women came in and wouldtell me stuff and we would break up and i knew it was true. we finally broke up and he was with new gf after swearing he wouldnt be with anyone for a long time, this was within 4 days. he brokeit off with her and called me to come back to imvu, got my avie back , she stalked us for 3 days, i went to bed, got up and he was back with her and going to marry her and meet her rl., this place is badfor anyone whohas bf or husband in real, im sure its broken up a few marriages and relationships, and its not worth it.

BelleBlue221
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Warning:  Gaming terms used

[center][color=#FF0000]Warning: Gaming terms used extensively[/color][/center]

I was addicted to IMVU for almost two full years. It started out so innocently, so very very innocently.

I've always loved mermaids. I wanted to dress up a 3D model in a mermaid tail and play around a little bit. I was in my last year of High School when I started and I was bored heh. I couldn't afford the tail, naturally too pricey, so I bought a dress. I was such a total noob starting out, the type that if I had seen me then as the experienced player I became, I would have kicked myself outta the chat rooms. I had been on IMVU a few years before, I think when I was 14. At that time you were given much more worthwhile freebies that you could pick, like the Princess Room, or the Vampire room for example. And a lot of the VIP/AP options were available to play around with on a Guest account.

I popped into my first chat room. A wolf den. I met someone who I remained 'friends' with for some time. His name was Daemon and he took me under his wing immediently. He bought me a better head because apperently my name was the same as his daughters. It's a very rare name. I then went on to explore other places and came across a member of the Sins family. If your as an addictive a player as I was you'll probably know about how there are RP names which are like Empires. They rule the game completely and it's quite scary when you get lost into the drama. At this time I still had no idea how the game worked or how to play. I had no idea how to RP and slowly slowly picked it up over time. I became the daughter of one of the Sins (As you can guess I'm not giving full deets of names xD, but you can't find the specific names anymore as they have all been changed) It was one of those "Hello, I hear you are recruting." to which they give you a list of options to which you choose the one you'd prefer. I wound up as his daughter and that was that. I suddenly had a heap of 'siblings' and was quite the family oriented person. I was lost in the world of marriage proposals, empires and drama drama drama. I found out my daddy dearest was quite the womanizer. He tried it on myself several times but honestly, I had no desire to 'get it on' with my RP father (Very shuddery thought)

My time with that family ended tragically when I was 'torn' between him and his current wifey and I chose to part and keep both as my 'biological' parents (Well, my charas but as can be quite natural for a noobie, you become a little too connected to your chara) and was adopted into a wolf clan. There was already drama there, masses of silly silly drama. Mostly about how the pack alpha was loved by two very different women who wanted him theirs alone. I was a pup who became a Delta who became a pack leader who left with her own 'mate' and started afresh. My mate dissapeared one day and never returned (I know, sucks eh?) and I had to reconsider my options. Before myself and my wolf mate had gone off, I had been given a very desirable marriage proposal by a Vampire King. Sadly, I had already felt too committed to my mate to take up the offer the moment it was offered. Re-enter Daemon....yes, we remember Daemon? Daemon who had divorced his mate and was looking for new fun. Daemon set me up with a new account (An account I still have but with a new name and only used to say howdy to old pals and for the odd roleplay when I have the time and mental energy)

Daemon and I began a little romance, on my account he had dressed up completely in blue. In RL Daemon is a 64 year old man and I dearie, was 17. The RP sex was brought into skype and I was addicted to him. He returned to his wife and left me out to dry. There were no boundries ever drawn up between chara and real life. I kind of wish it had been and he the more experienced should have drawn them up, but you learn the hard way in this game yes? My heart had only begun to be chipped away at with the people who came and left my life from IMVU.

I went to the Vampire king. We'll call him V. Now, V had a coven that in the right circles was quite well known at the time. V ran his coven with very strict rules and roles. He was Mr King and his brides. Yes, not queen, but several brides, typical Dracula thing, at his sides. The brides were desired by all the men in the coven. Every guard and every guest would envy the King for having these women drawn to him such. You were either a bride, a handmaiden, a capt, a lieut, a guard, a waitor or a basic member. Every position except basic member went through many many tests to be sure that you were good enough. The coven was always always packed.

I became Dawn and after a series of tests by the Elder Bride (Who became one of my greatest friends on IMVU and Skype life, and I miss her so dearly, but more later) and was presented to V. V didn't know it was I behind a different account and when he discovered my identity...he was furious. I had got myself caught up with a manipulative ass and had become seduced by him. He demanded that I delete my original account (An account i had already spent hundreds of $$ on) and become only Dawn. He pressured me and I was too absorbed with my want to become part of his family that I did so. I did so and I regret this. I had to say goodbye to friends. Later on I would find them again and see sometimes the friendships stuck. My old account's main chara had an admirer who IRL was so destraught to let 'her' go it took so much to allow him to grieve. It was pretty *insert THAT word here* 'ed up. He was very sick...He wanted to take her life himself. (I'm revealing all, everything that happened because..I haven't told a soul)

I was Dawn, bride of the Vampire King and his coven. I really fell into this role. I loved it. I really really loved it. I loved having control of the room and feeling like a leader. I loved being true to the King and being with my sisters, especially the Eldest Bride 'String'. We were quite the double act heh. Being a bride was something I continued to go back to because I could not find an RP that fitted me so well as this. I would leave the Coven and explore other places, other families, changing my name. But I would always, always return. I think...it was the feeling of family in the place. Yes, it was strict. I remember there was a time every day when V would expect all his brides online so as to travel to other kingdoms to make alliences and friendships. I loved to win his praise and he put me in charge of teaching Brides the manner of Queens. I felt adored, loved and real. In a very fake world.

In real life myself and V became close, as did I with my sisters. However, when V was displeased, he punished us severely. The tiniest thing that he did not like, if the wrong word got around, even if one had not meant it as it had sounded, he would become a tyrant. He would strip us of our thrones, if we were lucky it would be only for a short time and we were allowed back in shame and with would have to earn his love and trust again. I pushed his buttons especially...especially when he was cruel to my sisters or did something in the coven I did not approve of. Much like a real wife (lol) I got even when I could. I did love him though. I still do. I will always hold a place in my heart for him. He's an ass, but there were those small moments, small short moments, he was mine. And he could be great in those moments. It made up for the crap later on.

This all went to hell when I fell deeply and utterly in love with the new Guard. Desperately and achingly in love. Every woman in the covan wanted this man, (we'll call him 'D') and D wanted me. It was a slow slow budding relationship, we were 'together' in real life but in the game I was holding out for him secretly. I would go to every 'duel' and tend his wounds. I would be in his rooms at the same time as being in the coven. It was a forbidden love. We would anger the King if he knew. There was a woman (Siren as her name is long since changed and this is not a giveaway) Siren jumped into our friendship like an illness. At first, she seemed to be trying to keep us together, finding a way for me to escape the coven and finally be with D. But in truth, in real life? She was pulling him away from me. At this time he and I had agreed to meet in real life. I was going to go to America to see him. I was working my ass of ten hours a day to earn the dosh. But I was happy to do it as I was in love love love. I had to be away in the hours we best could talk. Finally once my tickets were booked I returned home one night late from work to discover a breakup message. He was breaking up with me because he could not stay awake in the hours that i was available (because I had been earning to go to see him) and didn't think it would work when we went back to a long distance relationship.

Naturally...this bloody hurt. To top it off Siren was there through the whole thing, between us and where we should have been talking just us two, she was ever so manipulative.

To top this off, my life fell apart that week. A day after the breakup, at midnight on the strike of my 18th Birthday, my grandfather was admitted to hospital. He went from the strong oak of a man I had known all my life in less that 8 hours to a whithering mess on the hospital bed. My best friend Faith on IMVU threatened to kill himself barely a few minutes after I arrived home. It was the most torturous night. I went to work the following Monday feeling like someone might as well had ripped out my heart and trodden all over it. And this was only the begining. After a horrible fight with my family at work for being late (Because it was my birthday and I had spent most of the bleeding day in the hospital) I returned to the online world to find a nasty message from Siren telling me she and D where together and that I could go an die for all she cared. I went to work every day that week for 10 hours then went to the hospital and watched as my grandfather slowly left this world day by day, and would return each night to find more crap from Siren. D did not want her and she crawled back to me and made the whole matter my fault. I had no support during the grief and would only find that sisters from the coven who I had trusted and loved had started relationships with D and were left heartbroken as he used them as rebounds.

My grandfather died the friday of that week. I rebounded with my best friend Faith and thought maybe...maybe now it could be okay....but on the eve of the funeral he chose his ex over me. God now I'm going all mopey, I'm sorry if you've read this far and this is bothering you....maybe no one will ever read this far heh.

I fell into the deepest, blackest hole after this. For months I couldn't have cared whether I lived or died. I suffered through grief and pain and felt like no one gave a hell about me. Not even my own family. I'm...quite suprised I even survived that...but I did. It wasn't easy. In real life I fell into an alchohol stupor. I would wake up in the bed of strangers most mornings, pick up my clothes and leave. I didn't care.

I am a very caring person by nature. I will help anyone and everyone, listen and be the friend in the time of need. I have given many an umbrella to the homeless men in my town and gotten completely soaked but happily as they could cover their few belongings from the merciless rain.

But at this time, I couldn't have cared less. I think I would have pushed anyone who gave me crap in front of a bus and not felt a thing.

On IMVU....I went through other relationships, I was a bride still. I was going through the motions.

I'm free from that now. I don't feel drawn to that game any longer. I HAVE no draw. I am not needed there and I don't need them. If I need them, its the 'them' that used to be, back when I was Dawn. They are long gone now, all those i knew and loved. I can never go back there, not THERE to that crazy, wonderful, chaotic, beautiful and ridiculous time. But I can remember with love and understanding.

I have made a few friends who I will 'keep' in real life. I will occasionally talk to them. We will share fond times and I will remember them in the light I always saw them.

String and I are still facebook buddies. We don't talk like we used to and I miss her and what we had beyond words. I think I loved her more that just a friend, I loved her as so much more.

There are friends who I used to date and who I'll always love fondly and still speak to.

There are many memories, bitter sweet would be the perfect word.

Me and D did speak again, we talked it out. I had always thought it he saught me to come back to him, I would go in a heartbeat, but I didn't. And I wouldn't.

I can now pass on my knowledge to younger girls who could fall into this trap and I have.

I understand the tug of IMVU, I understand the heartbreak and the wonderful times that it allows.

I wish still sometimes that I could go back. God...I wish sometimes. It was familier and brilliant. Especially being a bride ;D

I will always and forever remain THE BRIDE of The *BEEEP* Coven....Take that V :p

Apologies for going on a bit...but sometimes ya need to, right? :)

It'll get better. It will always get better. Just give time.

Dawn xox

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Dawn, to me your post

Dawn, to me your post describes so well the blurry state between reality and fantasy that makes these games so intriguing and potentially dangerous. When I first heard of MUDDs back in the 80s I was immediately fascinated by the idea, thought it would take cooperative storytelling to a whole new level. And boy, did it. Way beyond anything I'd have dreamed up on my own. I rode that amusement park as far as I ever care to and way farther than I ever should have.

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 was always amazed at the

I was always amazed at the strong emotions that these online relationships brought out. Even though it's all make believe, the emotions were very real and so intense. I'm so glad you were able to become free of this, Dawn. Real life is hard enough to deal with. Who needs all the additional heart breaks from online RPGs.

 

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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I think this thread is

I think this thread is interesting and a huge warning for those who are involved in RP romances. I want to say kudos to the OP who has found strength within herself to get over the guy and roll her eyes at his attempts to win her back.

When I first started gaming, I had no idea about this sort of thing going on. I was just in the game to kill a few wolves, gain a level up, and maybe just maybe try the PVP area if I had any skill to survive there. I was all for the testosterone driven, fighting part of gaming.

I went to a RP server in the game I played, and people from my old server kinda laughed at me for switching. At first, I thought, oh cool! RPing! This means I can be some stocky, hairy dwarf and RP with some elitist elf, and perhaps we'll sparr a bit just to make it realistic. I was COMPLETELY naive to the romantic relationships that could evolve out of RPing. Because, at the time, I was like, cool...bashing things is cool....and let's RP a fight, etc, etc. One fine and scary day, I happened to drift into one area of the game in which two RP'ers were 'going at it', quite publicly. I sat in my chair, and almost laughed my ass off. I couldn't believe people were using a video game to get off. What the heck is this world coming to? What if the person behind the toon is a child?

Seriously, RP gaming is a complete invitation for predators, and even molesterors, or rapists. This was no joke anymore, after I reflected on how insidious RP romance can be. ANd after reading this thread, I realized that hundreds of people are going through what the OP has gone through. You fall in love pretty hard with RP romances, because everything is idealized. You've got beautiful scenery, the lure of ingame romance, good looking toons, in game voice chat. Lots of potential for people cheating on their SO's or spouses. Lots of potential that young kids can be exposed to this sort of thing, just like I had stumbled upon it accidently.

And I hope those jerks who screw around with other women online get what's coming to them. They're a joke. They have NO real sense of what it feels like to LOVE somebody. They're always in LUST 24-7, looking for the next vulnerable female, man, or child, to use. It makes me sick, and if they were within 2 feet of me, I'd take my liberty to shove my fist up their nose.

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ShyaLaBEEF
ShyaLaBEEF wrote:

Seriously, RP gaming is a complete invitation for predators, and even molesterors, or rapists. This was no joke anymore, after I reflected on how insidious RP romance can be. ANd after reading this thread, I realized that hundreds of people are going through what the OP has gone through. You fall in love pretty hard with RP romances, because everything is idealized. You've got beautiful scenery, the lure of ingame romance, good looking toons, in game voice chat. Lots of potential for people cheating on their SO's or spouses. Lots of potential that young kids can be exposed to this sort of thing, just like I had stumbled upon it accidently.

And I hope those jerks who screw around with other women online get what's coming to them. They're a joke. They have NO real sense of what it feels like to LOVE somebody. They're always in LUST 24-7, looking for the next vulnerable female, man, or child, to use. It makes me sick, and if they were within 2 feet of me, I'd take my liberty to shove my fist up their nose.

You are so wise and smart!!!

This is how I explain it to parents. We would NEVER let our kids talk to strangers in a video game arcade or public venue at length; however, with the Internet, parents are okay with their kids playing with & talking to strangers for 10, 20, 50+ hours a week!

We THINK we're safe... we THINK it's harmless... we THINK it is okay.... because it's only a game.

I applaud Anima for sharing transparently. I am grateful for OLGA to help educate others, because this is serious!

Andrew Doan MD PhD

My Videos: Internet gaming disorder is real & my story 

*The views expressed are of the author's and do not necessarily reflect the official policy of the U.S. Navy or Department of Defense.

ChrisMix26
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IMVU can be rather

IMVU can be rather intense. It is a dating and relationship game, after all, though I suppose there are a ton of other distractions on there. But the big key point is that none of it is real. Like Shyla said, I think the emotions are easily sparked on there because the characters and settings are attractive. It's not everyday in real life that you're sitting in the hottest new club and multiple super models start flirting with you. It's inevitable that emotions would get thrown into the mix.

What I never understood about IMVU and Second Life is why the people don't just go do it in real life?

It's time to make up for lost time!

Game free since May 20, 2013.

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ChrisMix26 wrote: What I
ChrisMix26 wrote:

What I never understood about IMVU and Second Life is why the people don't just go do it in real life?

Because real life takes courage, hard work, discipline, and so forth. Simply put these RP games make it so easy and superficially fulfilling to indulge fantasies.

Olga/non member since Dec. 2008 Check out my latest video on Gaming Addiction and public awareness https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g-6JZLnQ29o

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You know, I was looking up

You know, I was looking up "Why do I keep getting back on IMVU" before I found this topic and the OP and replies were very relatable and somewhat observed as I was on this application for four years.

Too a big point I kind of understood why I try to go back at times and its because I miss how It was when I was 18, in high school and I'm not not talking strictly for relationships either. Back then, There was a few things that kept me and for the most part made me feel "complete".

1 - Friends/Social - When I was new, I met a group of people in one of those "social" clubs just to talk and have fun. This is how I started, the crowd was great, getting on sitting in front of the screen. Talking to friends from when you get home to the time you go to bed. Nearly talk about everything while meeting another person almost every night by the random chats that came up. (even the random invites).

2 - Relationships - Back then, It was where I seemed to have met women who I could relate to. Naive was I to some of the things revolving around what It did or did not bring. Some in which I seemed to be blinded back then not knowing what it meant to really love someone. (A lesson learned). Some just brought drama.

3. Unfortunately, although we do dislike and hate it. We had drama which kept some rotation and interesting subjects to get hooked into and talk about which probably strengthened the "need" to get on at times. Those times where you felt the need to stay online with someone because their BF/GF broke up with them or even when a room is full, dedicated for that reason and you're just one of the people there. Perhaps, being a witness to a meaningless argument between two friends you "care" for. etc.

Those were three big things I realized what hooked me onto IMVU back then and what seemed to keep bringing me back. When I was new as I've said looking back it was rather disappointing. I craved to see and be online, on my saturday nights with them then just relaxing with a movie, going out or anything because I had "them" I would have fun sitting with my friends and when younger joining my "GF" in another room or spending time with them. I did a bit of online dating which brought some drama when my "friends" didn't like her or among each other when friends began to date. I enjoyed going to the raves and dressing up as random crap, meeting others when I was newer.

A year or eight months pass... It was a about the time when I began to take breaks after minor drama and eventually over three and a half years. I finally just completely stopped engaging with this application. I have it on my PC and I do go on thinking I may talk to someone but every time: I get on, look at the interface (not expectingly but just what my eyes see) and a minute later log off realizing, its not worth picking up again. The "new experiemce" that I may have enjoyed back then is gone and there is nothing more to gain or learn from here anymore.

Why do I say gain or learn? Well, for myself It was a new experience that I believe made me stay on IMVU so long. The learning experience wasn't/isn't because I believe that online relationships (of any sort) are fake but that there are many things over time that it does open your eyes to in the real world.

1 - Confidence: You survived the online community of a variety of personalities. You may have "DATED" a person or found someone who took relationships real but it didn't work out. This proved (if you weren't sure anyone was into you) that there are people you can relate to. This was a big thing for me because in high school. It was rough for me to relate to anyone. My friends scattered and in a different school and me just a loner who couldn't seem to find his own place where he was at. Now I talk and seem to express my personality without fear and can find how the world is compared to a social application. It's a little more comforting although like the post above me says it is a lot of work, descipline and courage.

2. Learning experience - Any new experience is wonderful but to explore the change over time was amazing to be quite honest. Brand new newb in 2010, joining the game and having fun. To experienced with open eyes. As described above I enjoyed it but progressing with every stop and go (hiadus) did a number. Some times It was to get away from drama and I'd play another MMO or do something offline. Every time It made me closer to RL and come out of my shell. If I I didn't go onto that game. I would have never learned how it was to "love" someone and how it felt. As of right now, a female and I have had a few off and on's that we can't break from and although too late I've realized how it really was to love someone. Now am I sulking and depressed of it? No. What is done is done and I will find another but it was a learning experience. You do not need physical contact to love if it is true among the people involved but this also taught me that reality is much more rewarding and better for such things. Being in a online relationship that is real is stressful. Not seeing each other, having the will to stay with one another, avoiding temptations of others. (let's face it, On IMVU, there were times if you were into it that. You didn't just have your GF. There were admirers who stood as a trial. This doesn't mean you let into it but they were there). Reality can be just as cruel but when in RL, You can see the way your partner looks at you. Feel their touch, kiss and actually feel their emotions. It males things a little less stressful on that end.

Towards the end , with IMVU skipping over the beginning's end. I got on a few times to see old friends who went in completely differrent directions and I was pretty much the one who removed the old friends to forget them. A few times I was dragged back with someone of them but in the end, left once more feeling as I do now but weaker. I eventually ended up coming on with no one on the list and a shrug of the shoulders. I came on, not looking for any of them either and when I did meet someone I found that they quit.

Back then It the reply in my mind was "oh well" or "They finally got bored of this didn't they?" because back then thats what I believed made me stop everytime but no. I believe that it is because we learned and experienced as much as we could on the game that we needed. We all have our reasons to join IMVU believe it or not and many of them vary. We stop getting on this application because we experienced something and the feeling is over. Some of these experiences are negative. Some are positive. The most part though is that now that I know this. I can't get back on and expect to find someone to talk to and just have "fun" because it doesn't work like that for me anymore. Maybe a few of you feel it is something else that keeps you away and thats ok and good but this is mainly what I have seen for myself.

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Hugs to you Cali; I"m proud

Hugs to you Cali; I"m proud of your strength. I'm joinig OLGA too as I know I'm addicted I will share my story soon but I did just want to throw this hug out to my good friend callista

Cala

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I am a 62 year old female

I am a 62 year old female who stumbled acrosss IMVU early in 2014. To make it short I fell in love and married a 20 year old guy on the IMVU site. I ignored my real life completely. I gave this guy all kinds of money to buy things for himself on the game.

He ended up leaving me and I'm telling you the emotional pain was unbearable. I deleted the account and then reactivated it after 2 months to see what he was doing.

I have deleted the account again and have no intention of ever going back. Why I thought I could keep this relationship going is beyond me. I recommend others to beware of the emotional damage they can do to themselves getting involved like I did.

God bless you all who have been through this.

Peace, Dottie

Peace, Dottie.

Anima
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Thanks for the replies

Thanks for the replies everyone. The good news is I haven't been back to IMVU. The bad news is, a friend convinced me to try SEcond Life. From one addiction to another...

I've made a new post about it. Hopefully I can get out of this.

Anonymous28
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I would like to share something

imvu is hurtfull place

new here

Anonymous28
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i can say imvu is not good

i can say imvu is not good place i am on imvu long time and i can to say i have seen how things are there it is bad for anyone  

new here

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Imaginary Relationships

When I first read your post I thought, "I'm nothing like Anima."  But after some reflection, I'm really glad I never played imvu.  I've felt anxious and unsure about real relationships.  Regretful, unhappy, frustrated.  And good feelings too.  But I only felt the true God and the Universe have Abandoned Me kind of despair and gnashing of teeth about my imaginary relationships.  These usually start with a real person and the seed of a real relationship, something gets in the way of that, then the relationship IN MY HEAD grows into the most incredible thing ever, all the more poignant because now I have lost it.

It's al I could think about.  Each waking minute of every day contained at least one thought about it.  For almost 2 years the first time it happened!  It was an obession for me.  I still fall back into that mode of thinking, picking from various people in my past that there's no way I could run into any more and fantasizing.  If I had a game that reinforced that kind of thinking, I might have committed suicide.  That's not hyperbole.  It felt like the end of the world.

I don't mean to undermine what you're going through by saying, "Imaginary Relationship."  The feelings were always very, very real, even if the relationship part for me was mostly in my head.  I don't know what to tell you.

Random thought, the book Levithan Wakes by James Corey (pen name) has an imaginary relationship in it that I could really relate to.  The Sci Fi TV Series based on the book was a lengthy disappointment.  You might hate the book.  I can't think of another book that really gets such a clearly imaginary relationship like that one though.

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Would really like to see this thread open up again.

Would like to see this thread open up again and/or be able to talk to the people from this thread.

IMVU; my vice, my addiction.

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Why?

The best way to avoid this is dont get linked the avi. Sounds dumb right? Think about it, especially in a game like IMVU where you can do almost anything, hold almost anyone, be everything you want. We project our personality and subconcious, sometimes even our dreams onto these characters. You know that feeling you get when your avi cuddle's another one? its the chemicals in your brain being tricked into thinking you are really with some one. this is what causes love. If you want to stop it, you have to seperate yourself from the game. I find the best way to do this is by making a character with a cool back story and a different name. even a personality that differs from yours that you have to get in character to play. It stops telling your brain to fall in love with the person. I hope this makes sense and helps some one out there, even though this thread is super old. 

Here to learn, Here to Earn, Here for the knowledge people share

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