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  1. Hi there, sounds like a similar situation to mine. Quit gaming a while ago, but I relapse when stress gets to bad (school and work for me too). To be honest, your life sounds a little more stressful than mine, but I guess I just suck at dealing with stress. I haven't figured out another form of escape that works as well. Or how to keep my life manageable enough that I don't need to escape from it. I'm taking Anatomy and Physiology right now with a full time job. I'm supposed to start and MS in Exercise Science next year, but honestly, I can't imagine doing this for two more years. I could just forget school. Stick to my current career path. It would be a pretty good life if I wasn't spending all my "free time" doing school. But, I want more. A better, more fulfilling life. I just don't know if I have the fortitude to get there. I don't want two years of hell. And I don't know how to not make it that.
  2. EmG

    Yep, here we are

    Last week I relapsed after 110 days abstinence. Now I'm quitting again, (Oh, hey, I just passed 24 hours!) but I'm still in that weird stage where I feel this intense desire to be entertained and can't just relax and be. Or eat supper and go to bed, as the case may be. So, I watch TV, write on forums, etc. Basically smaller hits of dopamine to make up for the big ones I'm missing. It's annoying. I want to get back to my life already and put this misstep in the past. But I guess if it were easy to walk away from, it wouldn't be this problem in my life in the first place. At least I know it gets easier. Just have to ride the wave back to the beach.
  3. So, I've known I was an addict for over a decade now. Shit, wait, over two decades. Damn, when did I get so old? Most of the time I'm on the wagon, recently had a relapse. But, the thing is, only a couple people in my life know I'm an addict. I tried to talk to my housemate about it last week and he suggested moderation. Like, dude, if I was capable of moderation, I wouldn't be in this situation in the first place. His advice would literally fuck up my life. Luckily I know that. I'm ignoring it. But, that's why I don't talk about it much. No one seems to understand, or consider it a "real" addiction. Like, yeah, I know it could be worse. Drugs would be worse. But that doesn't mean it's not bad for me. I also don't talk about it because... most of my friends game. I just tend to have more in common with gamers than non-gamers. And it's hard for them to hear negative things about an important hobby in their life. So I guess I'm thinking about coming out of the closet as a gaming addict, though I'm still on the fence. Would it really help? Is it worth the backlash? Like all the other closets in my life, is this something I want to be open about, or keep on a need-to-know basis?
  4. So I realized gaming was not healthy for me over a decade ago. It was something that slowly increased in my life until I would not eat all day because I didn't want to get up and make food. Maybe I'd find something to snack on, but mostly I'd be hungry, telling myself just until I met this next goal, then I would take a break. Before I knew it, it would be 1 or 2 in the morning and I'd hardly eaten anything. I wasn't even having fun. Sometimes I'd be physically in pain from a neck cramp, or hunger, or shivering with cold, but I wouldn't get up to fix the problem. It felt like I "had to" play, even if I didn't want to. Anyway, at some point I got fed up and quit. Most of the time now, I'm on the wagon, but every now and then something pushes me off and I go on a few-day binge. I got an app last year to track my days away (Quitzilla) and I recently made it 110 days. Then my life got too stressful. I'm taking anatomy and physiology and have a full time job. I'm supposed to be going to grad school next year (Exercise Science), but I don't know how I am going to do it with these work hours. This semester has been so stressful. I can't imagine two more years of this. So, one day I came to a breaking point. I needed an escape from my life. To cease to exist for a few days. I played Don't Starve for 16 hours a day for three days straight (skipping work on Friday). Last year, I had some serious anxiety for mostly unrelated reasons (COVID, fear of death, fun stuff). I'm doing a lot better now. As I gamed for three days straight, I felt it creeping back. I'd get up to pee and get heart palpitations. ...that's not supposed to happen. But the threat of anxiety relapse wasn't enough to stop me. I played through the whole weekend. My housemates we're enjoying spring, trying to entice me to jump in the waterfall with them, but I could not be moved. Late Sunday night, I deleted Steam, and resolved to quit again. That was a week ago. It didn't quite last. This week saw the culmination of some stressful things at work. They actually resolved really well, but I wanted some time off afterward. And I still had the taste of dopamine in my mouth. I played a few times this week and weekend, and finally resolved to quit again. This time deleting things more thoroughly. I think it will stick this time. But... what happens the next time stress gets too much? The truth is, I need better coping mechanisms. It might take a couple weeks to get my anxiety back down. Why would I do ANYTHING to risk returning to the anxiety I suffered a year ago?? That was literally the worst experience of my life. How could I game now that I know it will give me heart palpitations? But, I don't have a better solution. I may have other escapes, but there is nothing more effective than games. The same reason it is so bad for me is why I want to do it.