Story of a Gaming Addict

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BlueDragon120
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Story of a Gaming Addict

I have been playing video games for a long time. It started sometime during the 2nd grade when I got a PlayStation 2 as a Christmas present. I was immediately hooked. Over the next seven years, I collected over 60 games and spent 6-7 hours a day playing them. At first, I didn’t try to hide my actions. Eventually, I was scolded for spending more time on video games than on my schoolwork, at which point I began to lie about how I was really managing my time. 

This period of gaming was interrupted when I moved to a different apartment with my mother, in a whole other city. We had to put many things in storage, including my gaming system. About two or three years after moving, there was a month in-between jobs that caused us to miss a payment on the storage unit; rather than wait for us to catch up, they sold off everything we had placed in storage.

Soon after this, my mother bought me a PlayStation 4 as a present. Of course, I fell right back into my 6-7 hour gaming sessions. And, of course, I started lying more to cover up how much I was gaming and how little I was studying. 

When it was time for me to go to college, one can imagine what I did to blow my first year. I tried the same thing I had tried for years, but college requires hours of studying rather than gaming. I lied about my grades, but by the end of the second semester I had failed a number of classes. The college didn’t formally “kick me out;” they simply stated that my studying skills were poor. 

It was at this time that I finally confessed that I couldn’t stay away from the video games. My mother had me pack up the gaming system; several doctors suggested easing off of them gradually, but I decided to go cold turkey. I didn’t trust myself to not play the games; I knew that I would go so far as to trade sleep for a chance to play them. 

I am planning to take more college classes in the fall, and I am confident that I can really focus on school for once. However, every addiction has a withdrawal, right? I found that out the hard way when almost everything in the world somehow reminded me of my video games. Watching a movie with werewolves would drag me right into Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, where I spent many hours running and hunting in the form of a werebeast. Reading fantastical literature would send me walking down the halls of a chateau deep in the forests of the Emerald Graves, from the world of Dragon Age. Wondering about the upcoming season of a favorite show would immediately have me wondering when the next Season of Diablo 3 was going to begin.

During those times, I get really jittery, and there is a kind of deep-seated irritation in my hands; all I can think about is the need to unpack the PS4 and start gaming again. I resist the urge, even though it makes me a nervous wreck for a short period of time. I just know that I would have a hard time controlling myself if I were to jump right back in the deep end. 

Lately, I have found that 30-60 minutes of intense exercise helps to calm my nerves. I favor cycling to the beat of music. Though it calms me, the compulsion is still there, always lingering in the back of my mind. Yet I continue to resist.

Polga
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Welcome BlueDragon

Welcome BlueDragon

Thanks for sharing your story. It sounds like you are very aware of your addiction and are guarding against it. You are aware that it is still there in the background. i hope you find this website helpful to you and that your life continues to be managable and that your new classes are enjoyable and lead you  to success. All the best to you

INFO

Parent's online meeting THURSDAY 9pmEST/EDT click here

Online meetings gaming addicts click here

Spouses/SO's of addicts click here

Parents of addicts click here for advice

Help for video game addicts click here

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Tobardus
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Hi BlueDragon,

Hi BlueDragon,

As far as I read on these forums, people in a similar situation like yourself have turned to socializing more. For instance some have socialized where they are with non-gamers for instance in college. I'm guessing there are also groups that do stuff together outside college hours like hiking and other activities. There is the website called meetup.com where apparently you can look for (non-gaming) hobbies and meet up with people and discuss basically any kind of hobby, if I understood it correctly. Exercise is awesome, I would keep that up everyday as long as you don't feel that something is wrong like an injury!

Disclaimer: I'm an addict.

Ritchy
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welcome

Welcome M!  Glad you found us here and spoke up.  Yes, withdrawals can make the first few weeks difficult, and urges / obsession to game can be intense.

It's great that you're motivated to change and resist urges.  My personal experience from years of trying to control or stop gaming on my own is that I can resist urges many times, but even successfully resisting them 99% of the time is not enough.  It only takes one slip back into a game to trigger intense compulsion and bingeing, which set me back on whatever progress I had made.  It has sometimes taken me weeks or months to get back off the games.

The surest way I've found to stay completely off games is to do it along with other people doing the same.  I make it my top priority for each day to not game for that one day, using the support that's available, going to at least a couple of meetings each week, checking in with the friends I've made who are also abstaining from games.

http://www.olganon.org/forum/line-meetings-message-board/all-online-meetings-computervideo-gaming-addicts

There's the link for the daily voice meetings that are well attended by friendly and supportive people.  You're welcome to just listen in on a meeting.  Nothing would be required of you.

Keep up the good progress!  Exercise is a very valuable part of my recovery routine too.

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