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This is awkward


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Hey Everyone,

This is not easy...  I do not like talking about myself.  I am the type of person who immediately regrets it when I share anything personal on the internet, and I always delete anything that I ever post.  In fact, my facebook wall has nothing but happy birthday comments and my interaction on any other sort of social media is essentially non-existent.  I have been reading various reddit threads daily now for about a year and have yet to post my first comment.  So this is awkward for me.

My name is Tony.  I have been addicted to video games since I was in middle school, when I was first introduced to Ultima Online.  I am now 29 years old and my plan for this year is to finally quit playing video games for good.

I have tried to stop many times in the past.  I figured that the best way to overcome an addiction is to substitute an unfavorable addiction for favorable ones, but the withdrawal was always too difficult to overcome.  All it would take is one bad day and I would be at it again.  The best that I could do was learn to manage this problem.

For me, this addiction is cyclical.  In the spring, summer, and fall, I am outdoors a lot and tend to play moderately.  However, in the winter, when it is cold, dark, and gloomy, it seems to be the only activity worth doing.  To counter this, I have purchased several books over the years that interest me, ranging from programming to government to comics.  I can always get into reading them for a few days or weeks before I start experiencing the withdrawals.  (And this is while actually still playing video games.  I was having withdrawals because I was not playing enough!)

I am here today because I have always told myself that there will be a day when it finally ends...  and I think that day may be soon.  I had some good times, although for the most part, I have felt nothing but regret from wasting away years of my life to this addiction.  It is crazy to think about where I would be today if I had never picked up a controller.  (Fortunately, I was somehow barely able to graduate with a bachelors in biochemistry while burdened with an addiction that deprives you of time and strips your potential.)

The truth is, I just became a father and I do not want my children to meet the same fate as me.  According to Malcolm Gladwell, it takes approximately 10,000 hours of purposeful practice to become an expert at something.  (I think there are many of us here that have greatly exceeded this value with a controller, and if we could, most of us probably wish we could take that time back.)

By quitting, I increase the likelihood that my children will one day become experts at something other than "playing video games" (like their father).


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Hey Tony,

welcome to the forum!

I want to be a father in foreseeable future(I'm 25 and married and we both want children), and I think this is a real strong reason to stop gaming. I know how awkward it can be to write your feelings and stuff in a semi-public forum and I actually never wrote anything down in any forum before this one.  But it helped a lot to see people you don't know care about your troubles and fights with a common enemy. I would really advice you to start a daily journal here. The personal reflection and the possibility to ask questions when they arise, while you think over you day was invaluable for me.

We are in this together and it awesome that you do something about your problems.

Edited by WorkInProgress
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Welcome Tony and congrats on not only taking this step for yourself but also on becoming a father - that's really amazing. I will encourage you to read Joe's journal - he was a new father himself and quitting had a really positive impact on not only his life, but the relationship he shared with his daughter as well.

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Welcome Tony! :)

Good job on taking the first step towards a better life, It may be hard in the first week or so, but stick in there and you will thank yourself! As WorkInProgress has suggested it would be good for you to start a journal to write you thoughts and feelings down.

This way we can all encourage and help each other out.

All the best :)


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