Your partner is a gaming addict. How to GET SUPPORT for YOU ! This is an edited thread. Find the complete thread for members with more links here : https://www.olganon.org/forum/discussion-spousessignificant-others-olg-anon-members-only/your-partner-gaming-addict-how-get
January 2021 Covid19 Update message: In these difficult times it may be possible to access anon groups such as alanon, coda etc in online meetings. Google search for it. Also therapists are working online to support people. In lockdown, it is more difficult to get relief from being with an addicted gamer and they are also tending to game more with lock down. So sorry if this you personal experience. Try to be very caring and loving towards yourself, to take the focus off the gamer. You are not alone to suffer in this way. It is a real challenge and I hope it will pass as soon as possible. I hope the extra intensity this has caused helps you to find a new way to live and find out what is important to you, and give you the motivation to chose a new path that is right for you. Take care.
Addiction affects the love-ones of the addict as much, if not more, than the addict. We need support and recovery for ourselves. How to get support for you:- To get the most benefit sign up to be a member of this site. It's free. https://www.olganon.org/user/register
1) Check out our welcome advice for spouses and SO's of gamers www.olganon.org/spouses_of_excessive_gamers .
First aid kit for spouses thread has important experience from spouses around coping with addiction here: http://www.olganon.org/forum/i-need-help-spousessignificant-others/first-aid-kit-spouses-and-significant-others-video-game
Its also well worth checking out the sticky posts in the blue area of both spouses forums (1) HERE: www.olganon.org/forums/i-need-help-spousessignificant-others and also (2) HERE: www.olganon.org/forums/discussion-spousessignificant-others-olg-anon-members-only. Go back in time through the forums to read the shared stories. There is a search box at the bottom of the page or use goggle to pin down threads that will be helpful to you. Keep coming back to learn more.
2) Connect with other significant others/spouses of addicted gamers by;
- sharing your experiences on your own thread or contributing to somebody elses thread; you need to sign up to be a member of this site. It's free. https://www.olganon.org/user/register
- sending PM's to members who you relate to
- using the Getting connected thread
- meeting up in the typed chat rooms with other members. There is no current online spouses chat meeting but you are welcome to join the parents typed chat meeting on Thursday at 9pm EST/EDT.
UPDATE: There are also 2 new meetings on Zoom and Gogglemeets. The details and links are at the top of this page
-starting a face to face meeting for loved ones of gaming addicts in your area. Contact me for support around starting your own meeting.
3) Consider attending a face to face 'anon' meeting in your local area; Al-anon, Nar-anon, CODA, Celebrate Recovery etc they are all helping loved ones of addiction take care of themselves and are relevant to you. The culture of local groups may vary (see caution post here for al-anon) so find one that suits you. They are local to you and FREE! ( donations accepted) See feedback below from members
Member experiences of attending "anon" meetings such as Al-Anon:
"I attend alanon and I have found a fantastic support base there. I urge anyone who is living with a game-addicted spouse (and not willing or able to leave) and feeling significantly neglected or miserable or angry to seek out an established "anon" group like alanon or nar-anon or coda for assistance."
"I feel it (the program!) working. Al-anon is grounding my weeks as I go once a week. The group is perfect for me and I feel accepted unconditionally and listened to, like here"
"When my husband joined AA, I joined Alanon. I learned how to take the focus off "him" and put it on my own recovery. In my case, he was also a member of Alanon so that when I started recovering in OLGA he took his focus off me and onto his own recovery.I mention these things because recovery works better when in a positive environment.
4) Consider professional therapy. Individual therapy for you will always be appropriate with an *understanding* therapist. Some people have success with marriage counselling, but sometimes it will not work because the addiction is so strong and the addict is in denial.
*Member Quote: "If you choose to do this through a counselor, you need to make sure this counselor believes that gaming is an addiction or is at the very least willing to treat you as the spouse of an addict. If they don't believe or aren't willing to help you along those lines as well as any other issues, it would be a waste of time"
See below an example of counselling from an unsuitable therapist :
"I recently went to see a therapist. I felt she ended up doing the opposite of the above, telling me what he needs to do to get better, etc. I had to remind her that I was meeting with her for me. That I was done helping him. Others have suggested I install software to monitor his online activities. Or provide him a list of therapists who can help him. It's him him him. And I'm trying to stop putting effort into helping him." So find a therapist that can help you as the spouse of an addict
Member experiences of marriage counselling:
"I went to a family counselor yesterday and asked for marriage counseling. She said that she could offer me counseling but wouldnt touch our marriage until my husband got into separate counseling and dealt with his alcoholism,gaming and depression. Until then, she wants me to begin the process of strenthening my self. Classes to make myself more marketable, exercise, good food, support groups (this one and Al-Anon)."
Other comments about marriage counselling: see original thread on members forum
Member experiences of individual professional therapy:
"I have dealt with this problem by utilizing my work's Employee Assistance Program to get a few free counseling sessions. I picked someone that 1)I had heard good things about, and 2) I could continue to see with my private insurance after my sessions with EAP were complete, as I knew 4 sessions was not going to cut it LOL. The therapist has given me "homework", which I had never had before and find quite helpful. I have read some self help books, journaled on top of blogging when I can, and I listen to a LOT of music. I made "to do" lists to keep myself focused or distracted. I have decided to buy a cute, pretty journal to do my official "bucket list". I have been SOOOOO busy caring for everyone BUT MYSELF that I don't even know what my dream are anymore :'(. That is going to change. I will use some free time to look at Pinterest, google travel stuff, fashion, home stuff. Paragliding sounds fun. White water river rafting sounds exciting. A hot air balloon ride? Why the f*** not?"
5. Share your feelings with your family and close friends:
Addiction can become a "dirty little secret". It tends to thrive by isolating itself from others. If you are lucky enough to have friends and family you trust, don't keep it secret any more. Send them to this site if they need some education on gaming addiction. Sometimes it is hard for people to understand the devastation that gaming can have on the family. Reach out to others when your SO is not there for you and you need support.
Keeping someones addiction secret can also be an enabling action; one that keeps them in addiction longer. Another reason not to keep it to yourself.
6. Your life is worth saving
Sometimes things can get so bad that life does not seem worth living and we feel despair. There are people out there who care and are concerned. Please reach out for help.
For resources around responding to suicidal feelings;