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Hello, Introduction


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Hello All,

My name is Dylan.  I recently found this site, and I'm grateful for this forum and the support I see here!  A warning, this is going to be a long post, but I figured I’d give a thorough introduction, as its helpful for me to tell my story, and may be helpful to others as well.

I was googling "video game addiction", and eventually watched a video of Cam, where he did a wonderful job of sharing his own story and explaining how gaming can have a negative effect, and does more often than many acknowledge.  After thinking about it some more and hearing some of the stats he shared, I don't think it's an understatement to say it is an epidemic.  For the record, I believe pornography is too, and they both often have an effect of ripping boys, and eventually men, from communities and society.  Granted, there are gaming communities, but are they truly fulfilling?

I was one of those boys, who got into gaming and pornography at a young age, probably around 12, and it's been a battle to let them go since.  When I first got into gaming in middle school, it's hard to say it had a hugely negative impact on me.  It was an easy way for me to connect with family members and friends my age and it was fun.  I played a lot of N64, games like Goldeneye, Mario Golf, and sports games.  When GameCube came out, it was a lot of Smash Brothers, but it almost always involved playing with my friends or brothers.  However, the negative effect was there -- often staying up until 2 or 3 a.m. over weekends, sleeping half the day the next day.  It was a social crutch.  Instead of learning conversation and how to speak with people, when family came over, I went to gaming.  I was shy, I didn't know how to talk, didn't want to talk, I'd rather escape into the game.

Late high school, I honestly didn't have time for gaming.  I was an athlete and was a straight A student, ended up being Salutorian of my class.  But...I wasn't done with gaming.  To fast forward a bit, I got a PS3 while in college, after struggling with another addiction, online poker.  I bought Oblivion, a RPG, and that was the first game I can say that had an immensely negative impact on me.  I missed class b/c of it, I totally flipped my sleep schedule around, and I isolated big-time in my little one bedroom apartment.  I remember at one point after playing for 16 hours or so in a day and going on 4-5 hours of sleep, I started feeling a sharp pain in one of my eyes, and it looked very, very red.  My brain, instead of being sharp, felt like mush.  I had made myself a zombie.  I put over 500 hours into that game.

I've had some ups and downs since then.  Fortunately, I did eventually graduate college (although, no doubt, gaming was a factor in the delay there), and I've been working with a mortgage company for about 6 years now, and I’m very grateful to have a steady job now.    I don’t have a console anymore, there’s only a select number of PC games I play, and it’s much easier for me to go months without playing a game than it used to be.  In some ways I feel I’ve grown out of it.  But, still, gaming is a problem.for me.   It’s very important for me to recognize and admit that, and that’s why I’m here now.  Some of those PC games I’ve loaded a huge amount of time in.  I played Civilization 5 for over 1,000 hours.  When Civ 6 came out, I decided I wouldn’t buy it.  But a few weeks later, there I was, downloading.  Seems like in a flash I had put 200 plus hours into that game.  I’d play the same game over and over even though the original luster was long gone.  Several times I would uninstall Steam and the game, and within a few days re-download Steam and the game.  I’ve probably done this 100 times or more

This bingeing came with a price.  I’ve missed work to game.  I’ve lied to family in town and said I was sick so I could spend more time playing the games.  I missed opportunities to hang out with friends or meet new ones, or even opportunities to date and be with someone special.  I’ve been to some very dark places in my mind.  I’ve contemplated suicide.  And gaming was usually somewhere in the picture.  It was a way to lose myself.

What I may struggle with more than anything now is Twitch.  Cam has a video on whether watching streams is a good idea or not, and I agree 100%.  It’s not.  True, watching streamers fills a hole, and I find it relaxing and not as intense as the gaming..  It entertains me for hours, it fills my time..  I have certain streamers I enjoy, and the list has got progressively longer.  But I’ve come to realize watching streamers is not much better than the gaming.  It’s hindering my growth.   It’s also an escape.  And often the language and jokes are crude, morbid, and vulgar.  In many streams/games/gaming communities, there’s a real death-like culture, and also the way women are talked about and treated irritates me.

So, it’s time to move on.  I want to live a more fulfilled life.  No more Twitch, no more Steam, no more games.  I want to give more and be more present to others.  I want something more real.  I want to be better at talking and connecting.  Not quite sure how exactly I’m going to do that, but I have some ideas.  Coming here was one of them.  It’s not going to happen overnight.    I purchased Re-Spawn, I plan on going through that.  90 days, no games, no Twitch.  Yesterday qualified as day 1.

I’ll also say – if you’re a boy in middle school or early high school – I’m glad you’re here.  On one hand, you have a lot more thrown at you than I did when I was your age (I’m 32 now), in terms of technology, games, porn, etc.  But, the bright side is, you have forums like this that you can connect to and get educated with.

Welp, that’s my long post, thanks for letting me share.

See you guys around,

Edited by dwalk77
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1 hour ago, dwalk77 said:

Thanks Chicken Bones! I did, I went to see an eye doctor.  It was basically just a temporary infection that cleared up, she gave me some eye drops.  I think I remember something about bursted blood vessels in my eye, which I'm sure could be attributed to staring at a monitor all day and lack of sleep


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