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JoeFish

My fall from the top of the world into the depths of gaming.(AGAIN!)

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So a few of you may remember me from about 6-8 months ago, i completed a 90 day video game detox and it completely turned my life around but since then its taken a turn for the worse.

Ive been a rock climber for not far off 7 years now and i have always been sub-par when it came to competing in the sport as there are people who start much younger. When i was still a gamer i got to the point when i almost quit climbing as i felt it was holding me back in the gaming world. Then one day in a fit of gaming induced anger i frantically searched the internet about how to quit gaming and i came across Cams videos. I watched nearly all of them in one night and in a moment of pure motivation i decided to quit gaming and focus all my efforts into climbing, soon after a girl who i knew became my girlfriend and i gained loads of new friends through her, life seemed to be going great. In the climbing world i soon got to a very high standard, higher than ever before and started to represent my county at national events. However after failing to make the UK team on 2 occasions i felt down and lost, id quit what i had known and been good at to take a shot at climbing. I felt all the stability in my life had gone, everything id trained for was worth nothing. Why did i ever quit gaming i asked myself? I started seriously thinking about my life choices, i spoke to one of my old gaming friends about it and they told me that i had done the right thing to quit gaming, but he missed playing with me. This made me feel guilty and i couldn't stop thinking about all the friends id left behind. As if on queue a few days later, my girlfriend at the time told me she had cheated on me on multiple occasions and that she wanted to end the relationship. Through that i lost nearly all my new friends and i really did feel lost. I sunk into a depression and didn't know what to do. The next day i went into college and the gaming friend who i mentioned before knew what had happened. He sympathised with me massively and joked that i should play games with him again cos he missed me carrying him on csgo. That night i went home and i felt like i had nothing to do, so i made one huge mistake and opened up csgo. For the last 2 months now ive been played csgo non-stop and i have reached the same standard that i was at before, maybe even better. Further i have joined a semi-pro csgo team called dragonite, we have a sponsor in the UK called adata and we play in LAN and online tournaments. It didnt really occur to me that i had relapsed until the other day when i suddenly felt a huge wave of guilt. I saw an advert for a cam adair video and i couldn't stop thinking about what i had done. I really want to just live a normal life but every time i try, video games just find their way back into my life somehow. I am signed onto a dragonite now and its the best community feeling that ive ever had but all i can think about is that i should be living normally. I need some help to quit again but i dont know where to look. I feel trapped in the world of gaming and i have no escape. I dont have any friends who dont play video games so it is really difficult for me to avoid the subject in basic conversations. Its like my life cant continue without gaming. I need a way out but i cant find one, thrusting myself into the dark didnt work last time and i dont think that it will again. I wish i could change and i really do want to,but my brain doesnt.

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To be entirely honest, I believe you and your brain have changed massively. I mean, you said you quit and you gave professional climbing a try. You said, you had a relationship with a girl and you had a lot of social contacts. But than, you "failed" at climbing, you learned that your girlfriend cheated on you and you lost many of these social contacts BUT STILL your brain tells you that you should live a life without gaming. That is literal change. The old you would have just said "screw them all, time to game 12 hours a day". You made change.

Also, your relapse is not a bad thing, if you ask me. Your world fell apart around you. I know how horrible it feels to learn your partner cheated on you. And with climbing "failing" and the new friends gone, there was not much left. I can just assume that the pain must have been overwhelming and this pain was medicated with gaming. You did, what you needed to do. Instead of being hit so hard that you can't get up again,  you found a way to numb the pain for a good amount of time. And now you opened this thread in the forum. You are asking for help to get back on track. I don't see anything wrong in what you did. Only very human actions.

What I would suggest now are a couple of things:

Most importantly, you should create an island for yourself. Something, a hobby, that is yours and that you do not seek to do professionally. May be, take climbing, but do not take it as an career. Careers have setbacks, they can fail and if you ever get injured, your career would fall apart again while you are left with nothing that you do to be you. Find something that you do because you like doing it. No competition. No money involved. No stakes. Do something for you. And that should stay yours even if you get a new girlfriend.

Second of all. Get rid of your girlfriend if she is still there. You don't have to hate her, that is not useful at all, but you don't need anybody that is not trustworthy. There is no reason to cheat on anybody. It only shows low personality. If one feels so alone in a relationship, it is time to talk. Betraying somebody is the wrong way to go and a person who betrays once will do it again. So, again, free yourself of the burden. Don't feel guilty about it. You need to be free to get back on track.

Third thing: If you can, find at least one person you can talk to without having talk about gaming. Finding friends is not easy, but a person you can talk to from time to time is a good start.

And the last thing is also very important: Free yourself of the guilt. I mean it and I can't stress this enough. I play video games from time to time, because it helps me get through a very hurtful time that I can, sadly, not change at all. In the beginning, I felt like I betrayed this community. But the feeling of guilt is not true to you and it is not helpful at all. The opposite is the case. Because you felt guilty, it was easier for you to play with your old friend. Because you felt guilty, you feel like you relapsed and that you failed.
Free yourself of the feeling of guilt. Forgive yourself for gaming. You needed it, it helped you. But don't do anything because you feel guilty. You don't owe your old gaming friends anything. You did not betray them, you did not dump them. You wanted to keep moving and they wanted to stay. Nobody's error, no reason to feel guilty. You don't owe this community anything. When you relapsed, it happened. End of the story. You don't even owe yourself anything at all. You can basically go through life and do whatever you feel like doing. But you said, you wish you could change. So that is what you should be doing. The things that you truly wish to do. Guilt-free. For you.

So, like I said. From my perspective, you already did change a lot. You know what you want. You just got set back while trying to achieve it. That happens, no need to punish yourself for it. If you still want to have a life that is not entirely numb, you know what to do. Say "thank you" to the csgo community, appreciate the time together, but keep on moving towards your very own goals. Look out for yourself, trust yourself and allow yourself to fail. Without failing, you will never know what you don't want. Just re-calibrate, get back on track and witness the progress you make. :) You got this under control, mate.

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@Regular Robert really got it to the point. And even if you maybe think different, you dont sound like you failed at your hobby at all. Being good enough to take part in national tournaments means you are good. Maybe there were others better but still it doesnt change what you achieved. Be proud of it. Then about your girlfriend. I know shit like this hurts like hell. And its very easy to get into old habits again after some tragedy happens. But me thinks too you dont owe your gaming friends anything. Mine tell me too they miss me blah. Still its only a game and we dont have much things in common apart from that. Now being in a good team and going to play LAN makes it more diificult to stop. I dont know if its the same as it was with me with battlefield, but when i got better and above the average player and joined a very good clan, things even got worse. For being on a certain level you need to train, so you need to spend a lot of time in the game. I dont think its the right thing to do. Imagine what else you can do during all the time. Meeting a new girlfriend for example :)

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