As I have returned to my MMORPG I thought I might give some input and suggestions on random thoughts in my head about this.
Am I addicted to the game? It's a 50/50. I have a social life, but it's somewhat integrated and somewhat not. I have a low tolerance for a lot of behaviors that I examine. For example, all it takes is for someone to say "hey kid." to me and it ****es me off. I'm 21 and hate a lot of mannerisms that I'm not comfortable with. Yet at the same time I'm introverted about my feelings.
When I play, I always look at the clock to the right of me. I won't do anything that I know will interfere with any activities whether it be work or to hang with friends, or even make a phone call that might turn into an important conversation.
As for "the character," nobody likes their toys being broken. If a 5 year old builds that sand castle they'll cry seeing it being smashed. The same can go for this game. When I played Diablo II back in the old days, a bug destroyed my character(this was in high school). I cried when I saw my character screen with him not there. This was because these characters easily create bonds with the player. So if the player is threatened when it comes to the security of his character it is very easy for a temper to flare out of defense.
As for suggestions on the "addiction" part, I would suggest analyzing what portion of the addiction in MMORPGs the player is into.
If the player is into level grind obsession it means the player must feel like they are building up to something and obssessed with progression. This may also mean that the player will be very prone to boredom when he or she feels like they are not doing something. Many activities in which the player doesn't feel like they're in the "getting anywhere" state of mind will easily trigger this type of addiction.
If the player is heavily involved with a "guild" or "clan" of some sort they want to belong to something. They have insecurities in which they use these people for that sense of belonging. The player most likely has low relationships with others in real life resulting in few to no friends in the real world. These people are the backbone to his or her relationships.
This guild/clan section has 2 sectinos though.
1. If the player is heavily involved with a high level guild they also have the level obsession leading to this high level guild. This means they also will have feelings of superiority logging onto their character that they don't have in real life.
2. If the player does not have the level addiction and is involved in many close friend relationships they are using the game to reach out to other people due to lack of friendships in real life. A lot of females use MMORPGs for social purposes.
Suggestions on breaking addictions or simply maintaining them.
The husband/wife addicted situation:
Find what the player is into within the MMORPG. By some legitimate means see their character level, status, and the overall basis of their activity. You can easily find this information by talking to them while they're playing(even off topic).
The rough portion is how to go about what you find. For many addicts involved in those high level guilds and such I can sadly say that a lot of those type of addicts need to be met with the "It's me or that game" scenario, and sadly, they will choose that game.
The reasoning behind this is that the attachment level is so high and the MMO addict will feel that you're forcing them into uncomfortable circumstances. They'll say that you're unfair, harsh, and cruel. They'll even say that you're "controlling" even though they are the ones being neglectful to the world around them. The problem is that the addict feels they do no wrong and that is what they th ink, making that decision forces them into considering you a sort of enemy to them which causes feelings of resentment.
Another harsh portion of this is that it will mean that they feel this game has priority over many important activities in their lives. The problem with a marriage in this is that a game ends up having priority. This is definately a problem with marriages.
I'll stop my writing now. I usually just do these sorts of things out of nowhere browsing. I have no idea what I'm doing right now.