Spouse has gaming addiction. Where to begin?

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rebebe
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Spouse has gaming addiction. Where to begin?

Hi friends! I am already grateful for this forum and the information I have found here.

A little about me, I am 44, have been with my husband for 11 years and married for over 3. This pandemic year has opened my eyes to my own trauma and sent me on a healing journey, which has been really powerful and transformative. I am currently in a 12 week Codepency Recovery Workshop (with Lisa Romano, it's excellent and I highly reccomend it.) This healing process shattered my denial about my childhood - AND my marriage! Wow!

In December I told my hubs this marriage wasn't working for me, we had a week "apart" in the same house, and then he finally had a "come to Jesus" moment and promised to be a better, more attentive, communicative & connected husband. He put in a pretty good effort for a couple weeks and slid back into his old patterns, putting gaming first, having little to no initiative in household matters, and gaming/being on his computer (in his own office) as default, and barely responding to my "bids for attention." Our interactions are VERY mother/child, with me asking him a hundred questions to make conversation and know how he's doing, and him giving bare minimum answers that don't lead to conversation or connection.

I am realizing I need to detach and am planning on spending a month apart to focus on my own healing and not get so worked up and upset about what he is doing and how he is behaving.

Do I tell him he has gaming addiction? Do I tell him I'm detaching? Do I try to negotiate "terms" with gaming before detaching?

Any advice is helpful! Also this is my first time on any kind of forum, if there are any kind of ground rules I should know about, can you kindly point me in that direction?

Thanks so much! <3
 

Polga
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Welcome Rebebe

Welcome Rebebe

Glad you found us.

That course sounds like it is really helping you. Awesome

Whether you want to use the words " you are an addict" is something you need to think about. You could find yourself argueing about what the definition of an addict is and what makes you qualified to say he is addicted.  The point may be that his life is really unbalanced, he is not honoring his marriage vows, he is neglecting his duties etc etc and it the gaming that seems to be replacing all these things ...and from what you have observed he does not seem to have much control over how to regulate his gaming. You could ask him does he think he could be addicted ?

How you go about changing you and communicating with him is up to you. I don't think there is a right way.

I recommend you read as much of the first aid kit linked below as you can and let it sit with you. Then what you need to do may become clear to you. Some spouses use ultimatums, others just detach. There is a thread about communication in the kit

https://www.olganon.org/forum/i-need-help-spousessignificant-others/first-aid-kit-spouses-and-significant-others-video-game

INFO

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

Online meetings gaming addicts click here

Spouses/SO's of addicts advice here

Parents of addicts click here for advice

Help for video game addicts click here

Please help! Donate here

rebebe
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Thank you Polga!

Thank you for your wise words, Polga. I recently asked him if he thought he had a gaming addiction, and he started arguing about the definition of addiction! He was very reactive and defensive.

But I will say, thinking of him as an addict is helping me. Before I would think he was lazy and didn't want to spend time with me. Now I realize he is not in control. I have been thinking of it like an "eclipse." When he's in an "eclipse" he is not the loving partner that I know that he is. He's irritable and obsessed. The only thing I can do is withdraw my attention that has enabled him, and focus on me first. I think this will take some practice, as enabling him is a deep pattern! I am going to log his computer screen time as I think he is in deep denial. And take time to sit with and understand my situation, what I can do, and what I want to do.

Polga
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Sounds like a plan Rebebe !

Sounds like a plan Rebebe !

I had to smile when you said he started arguing about the definition of an addict !

One of the members here used to think of their spouse as a 'gargoyle' whenever they were at their worst.

The addicted personality is very complex and full of anxiety and denial. There is a book by Craig Nakken that explains it quite well.

Great that you are putting your focus on you.

Keep coming back !

INFO

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

Online meetings gaming addicts click here

Spouses/SO's of addicts advice here

Parents of addicts click here for advice

Help for video game addicts click here

Please help! Donate here

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