New to OLGA: Introduction

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JackBean
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New to OLGA: Introduction

Hi, everyone. I have a few purposes for making this thread.

So my name is Jack, and I'm new to OLGA. Today is my first 100% clean day. No video games, no youtube videos, Steam forums, anything. So I guess my recovery begins today.I've quit gaming before, most notably for about a week prior to yesterday before relapsing, or made promises to quit before which have all fell through the cracks. I'd always just re-download Steam or find other games that I thought were harmless, such as dumb flash games on Kongregate. I am finally ready to be done. One of my main problems with quitting was not wanting to miss out on new content. My favorite game was Payday 2, which is difficult to quit because they're constantly adding new content, so I'd always make excuses to re-download it and try it out. Not anymore. I am done. The first purpose of this thread is to announce that, mainly to myself.

The second purpose of this thread is am attempt to encourage those who may be reading this and having a hard time with their addiction. Starting today, I have began writing a novel that I've been brainstorming on for a few months now. I've also found ways to cope with no longer gaming by planning out my days ahead of time so that I wouldn't find myself bored and at risk of relapsing. I also plan on writing a seperate children's book for my son, that I may or may not publish. It is mainly for him, so we will see. This Christmas, I plan on buying myself a musical instrument of some sort and leaning to play it. Last week I began taking walks with my son every day, about a mile each. There is always something to do, and I'm assuming that most of us here played quite a bit on an average week, so those large voids in time can be filled with positive things.

The third purpose of this thread is to tell you guys a little bit about myself. I am 28 years old, married and a father of a two and a half year old son. My video game addiction has caused them such harm that I am ashamed to admit it, even anonymously. My wife and I have been together for roughly 5 years now, and my addiction has hurt her the entire time. I cannot tell you how many horrible fights we've had over it. Breaking things, calling each other names, physical abuse.. just.. horrible things. At the root of it all, I'm not that type of person. All of that was a product of how video games turned me into an uncaring and unpresent boyfriend/husband. My son had a traumatic birth, it was an emergency c-section due to complications. My wife had to go to the ICU for a week after he was born and was on the verge of death. My son had to go to the NICU for a few days. I visited him twice for about an hour each time. I was not there for my baby. My wife, I visited her only a few times. After the wife and baby came home, she stayed at her mom's house for about a week because I was working and unable to take time off. I visited them briefly each night during that time, but was always in a rush to go home and game. All of this was because I was so obsessed. I abandoned my family in their time of need for video games, and for that I am truly sorry. Since then, I've been the best dad that I could be, but have always had my mind preoccupied by video games. I've left him to his own devices so that I could look at game forums and youtube videos almost on a daily basis. ie: be a bad father. Today that stops and I will give him and my wife every bit of me and my time.

The fourth purpose is to tell even more about myself, but this time more on the recovery and previous recoveries side of things. I started drinking and smoking pot at age 12. By the time I turned 15, I was a full blown pothead who had been around the block with other drugs as well. By the age of 16 I was a full blown alcoholic. Smashed drunk almost every day. I was stealing two fifths of liquer from the local grocery every single day and drinking one by the time I passed out in the early hours of the morning. I dropped out of highschool when I was 16. By the age of 17, I had a heavy cocaine addiction. I worked part time, but mostly fed my addiction by middlemanning cocaine deals, most of which involved friends who I purposefully got hooked to benefit from their deals. I moved 400 miles away when I turned 18, and began working as a powerplant mechanic. I escaped the drugs, but kept a nasty alcohol addiction. After a DUI at age 19, I enrolled in a diversion program, and had to attend AA meetings (which I'll touch more on that in a minute), I would stay sober for about a year, then later fall back into it and eventually get into a high speed car accident (no other vehicles or people were involved. no one was hurt but me) which shattered my ankle and left me borderline handicapped. I still have my leg, and can still walk fine, but it causes me problems from time to time. So I was laid up for about 9 months with nothing to cope but pain pills and video games, which I had played video games all my life but this is when the problem truly began. I returned home to my old apartment which my roommate had kept the lease going, and I was waiting for my union to dispatch me, and all I could do to occupy my time was drink and game, which would eventually spiral completely out of control. 

My fifth purpose, my experiences with AA and NA. Working the steps will be a problem for me. I haven't drank in several years and I haven't done cocaine or any other hard drugs in almost a decade now. None of this was a product of AA or NA, I did it all on my own. But I'm conflicted because when I think about it, all my life I've exchanged one addiction for another, never really giving much thought to the underlying causes. Is it possible for me to exchange a bad addiction for a good one? I don't know. Can I do this alone? I don't know. I want to though. Things are really on the line now more than ever and I need to save myself and my family. That being said, when I am ready, I will begin the steps. Until then, you guys will probably be seeing a lot more of me.

 

One final tidbit I'd like to leave here is don't be ashamed of your problem or hate yourself because of it. I know how difficult it is to face the opinions of people who don't understand, and it seems silly that something as ridiculous as video games can cause someone such enormous problems in life, but it is a disease just like addiction to alcohol or drugs. I am an alcoholic and a drug addict and nothing has damaged me or my loved ones as much as video games. Keep your head up, we can do this.

Jack

Polga
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Hi Jack

Hi Jack

Welcome to OLGA and thanks for your share.

INFO

Help for gamers here

Help for parents of gamers here

Help for spouses/SO's of gamers here

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

Online meetings gaming addicts click here

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May Light
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Welcome to OLGA Jack.

Welcome to OLGA Jack.

Thank you for sharing your story open heartedly. I think your two sentences sum it all up: "it seems silly that something as ridiculous as video games can cause someone such enormous problems in life, but it is a disease just like addiction to alcohol or drugs. I am an alcoholic and a drug addict and nothing has damaged me or my loved ones as much as video games.." Thank you for the insight. You experienced it all and you are speaking out of experience...When will the health authorities realize the detrimental effects of video game addiction I wonder. How many more people and families have to suffer before this problem is acknowledged and something is done about it..Good luck to you and your family..Hope you can identify the route cause of your addiction and stay sober forever..All the best.

 

"The brightest future will always be based on a forgotten past. You can't go on well in life until you let go of your past failures and heartaches." "The first step toward change is acceptance." "Once you accept yourself, you open the door to change. That's all you have to do." "Change is not something you do, it's something you allow."- Will Garcia

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