Frustrated and Feeling Trapped

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steelion816
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Frustrated and Feeling Trapped

I'm new to this group, although I probably should have joined long ago. When I started dating my husband 8 years ago, he was very immersed in World of Warcraft (WoW). He has primary custody of his now 12-year-old son, who I have been helping him raise full-time, as his mother is across the state and not involved in his life. I considered calling off our engagement in 2010 after realizing that the gaming seemed to be a problem, had a conversation with him, and was told that the level of gaming was circumstantial, and not how he planned to live his life.  Believing this, I married him, and of course, the  heavy gaming continued.

After a couple of years, I told him I wanted a divorve because I was feeling so neglected and couldn't continue. He actually went to see a therapist and stopped playing WoW, which gave me hope. That hope was dashed when he started playing other computer games, then last Christmas,  wanted to get an Xbox for my stepson. When I expressed my concerns that it would be HE who would be playing the Xbox, he lashed out at me (as is typically the case when I bring up concerns about the gaming) that I can't predict the future, etc. Said if he did play, it would be occasional if anything (it is regularly, far more than my stepson ever gets to play), he would never play online in a group (he plays Destiny and other games online with a group), and he would never get a headset to communicate with people (he has at least 3 headsets  now and has a regular group with whom he plays and communicates). We also "had" to get a new TV because we live in a small townhouse and I could hear him loudly talking to everyone, constant explosions/shooting, etc. all through the house, so he moved everything to the unfinished basement and plays there on a folding lawn chair (there is no heat). It is not uncommon for him to play all day long on weekends, and until the wee hours of the morning even during the week.

As if that wasn't all enough, if he is not playing Xbox, he is playing mobile games on his phone, and constantly. While watching TV, in the bathroom,  in waiting rooms at my stepson's appointments, at rest stops when we are traveling...he has his phone completely locked down, but the games that I know of that he plays are Clash of Clans and Lords Mobile (only because I have seen charges for both on our bank statement.) When I walk in the door or in the room, he won't even look up at me. When I say I am not going to have a conversation with someone while they are playing a game, he says he can multitask and is listening. I should also add that he refuses to be intimate with me and has slept on the couch for years now, I suspect so he can game in peace.

We are on our third marriage counselor, and while we had a period of progress, the gaming continues and the defensiveness and ultimate rage anytime I bring up the gaming, feeling neglected, feeling lonely, my stepson being neglected and acting out etc., continues. He says he doesn't have a gaming problem, he has a job at which he is successful and helps support our family (I also work full-time) and it's not like he sets alarms to game (as of this week, I found out he is getting up to play Xbox before work, when he has always struggled to get up any other time.) I should mention that we both have chronic illnesses...he has diagnosed narcolepsy and has had two spinal surgeries, so deals with chronic pain (but will sit for hours playing video games when he tells me he can't sit in a movie, etc. if I suggest a date night). Today when I said I'm concerned that he's  now playing before work and I think he has a gaming problem, he said that he could say I am addicted to running and essential oils (both of which are medically necessary and documented as such with my medical condition). He is constantly making me feel like I am blowing things out of proportion and I'm the one with the problem, which is why I am posting here. I know there are gamers with far worse excessive tendencies to the point that they are unemployed, etc. Am I overreacting? I lived alone for 8 years and occasionally felt lonely, but this is far worse in a marriage where I feel like video games are always the #1 priority, I do the majority of everything around the house, raising his son, etc. If not for him already being abandoned by his mother, I would likely have left long ago (hence why I feel trapped). At the same time, I don't want this model of marriage played out for him and don't want him to think that it's ok for a husband/father to constantly be on some type of video game while the wife/"mother" is constantly busy taking care of everything. Sorry for the long post...any thoughts/suggestions would be appreciated.

 

Polga
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Joined: 02/17/2014 - 11:33am
Welcome and thanks for

Welcome and thanks for sharing steelion.

You are not over reacting. It is a common feature that the addicted gamer will make it so the spouse feels it is their problem. You are not alone !

You may find this thread concise and helpful;

http://www.olganon.org/forum/discussion-spousessignificant-others-olg-anon-members-only/newspaper-columnist-response-gamers

Addicts need to increase gaming to get their fix over time. So he is likely to get worse. That may mean that he eventually loses his job. Addiction is usually a progressive disease.

To protect your needs, you need to consider your boundaries to stay in the relationship and how you will let him act around you

http://www.olganon.org/forum/discussion-spousessignificant-others-olg-anon-members-only/boundaries-what-they-mean-and-how

Learn about enabling and stop enabling him

http://www.olganon.org/forum/discussion-spousessignificant-others-olg-anon-members-only/about-enabling-spousessos-addicted

learn how you can "detach with love" to keep yourself sane.

http://www.olganon.org/forum/discussion-spousessignificant-others-olg-anon-members-only/detachment-what-means-and-how-do-it

If he is an addict in denial then marriage counselling is very unlikely to  work. Scroll down the following thread to see links to our members experiences of marriage counselling etc.

http://www.olganon.org/forum/discussion-spousessignificant-others-olg-anon-members-only/your-partner-gaming-addict-how-get

It's not you. It is his addiction that is making him react in that way. Keep coming back until it starts to make sense about what you have to do.

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

Please help! Donate here

Tamamellie
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Joined: 12/29/2016 - 1:24pm
Sounds so familiar

When I was reading your post, it scares me how much it reminded me of my wife. She and I have been together 8 years, but I played too. I'm a lot more causal about it and only get maybe a game a year and don't play online. We had good balance until she stayed home with our kids and got bored so she started online gaming and is obsessed. She invested in many pairs of headphones, bought multiple copies of games so she can play on multiple consoles, if she's not playing she is on her phone looking up games or playing mobile games too. She gave her phone number out to her gaming friends so date nights she is either texting them or playing a game. When I express concern or ask her to not play and do something with me she freaks out. Her anger has started to scare me so I just avoid her sometimes. We just started to go to therapy and so far is hasn't helped yet, but I'm willing to keep going if she is. Before every session she starts to make up excuses not to go. I hope that both of us find some balance with our spouses. This is no way to live!

HotelCalifornia
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Last seen: 1 year 3 weeks ago
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Joined: 01/06/2017 - 10:23pm
Fun Times...

I hear both of you loud and clear. My wife has a high stress and high paying job which allows her to play all the time whenever she is done working for the day.    She is in the thralls of total addcition and there is nothing I can do about it.  The only thing I can do, is take care of myself, surround myself with a great network of real friends and get start structuring my day so I don't go completely nuts.    

 If I continue to monitor her behavior, I make myself crazy.   Thing is, I understand the addiction part of this bs.  I was addicted to to drugs a while back, so I get it.  I love my wife and I don't like seeing her go through this stuff. I am a strong and resilent person.  I know there is light on the otherside of the tunnel.   It will get better.  Boundries are a beautiful thing to set for yourself, I wish I could establish them for me and take my own advice.  We all do crazy things for love, but we shouldn't sacrifice our happiness.   Thank you to OLG - Anon for setting up this wonderful site and providing support for the growning number of loved ones that need support.  I will throw $$ support when my situation gets better.  

If you can't stand for something you'll fall for anything.

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