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Hi, I'm new here.  I'm still in my early thirties, don't know how much of a story to relate here but I guess I do a lot to hide my gaming habits and have never spoken about them to anyone...including therapists.  It's harder than I thought it would be to talk about this but I guess before this moment  I've always kind of thought about playing games as a harmless distraction -like doing nothing-  the real problem really was not choosing to do something else.  I have toyed with quitting smoking for about a year and had a few impulses to do the same with gaming but I never really had the resolve enough to do either permanently.   I think it really started to become a problem when I was unemployed and immensely depressed for a period in 2011 and though my habits seemed manageable for at least some significant parts of the later years this last year it became much worse then it has been in a long time that I think I spent almost half the year in a fog..no idea what I've accomplished. 

I had a lot of excuses for not dealing with this as a problem - I guess my job is pretty stressful and I am alone a lot but it's hard to say if those things were a real source of anxiety or just served as convenient obstacles for not investing my time and energy into tangible outcomes. I keep a lot of people from getting that close to me, haven't dated seriously in years or have much professional accomplishments to speak of.  I realized that I hadn't just lost interest in my life but also hope...I started to think that it was stealing so much of my time and energy and occupied my mind so much that everything even gaming itself had lost meaning and joy.  I purged my phone of all the games a couple of times and they would slowly creep back on.  It didn't really cohere for me that I really had an addiction to gaming until I stumbled across this forum doing a lot of random searching.  I had listened to a podcast where a person kind of casually spoke about their having to swear off gaming because it has had a negative impact on their life and I couldn't stop thinking about it. 

One of the things that I guess is kind of remarkable is that the games I play are the shittiest of games - like total clickhole shit and I just move from one shitty game to another and they are hardly differentiable.  That in itself is incredibly embarrassing but I thought I should say that...I can lose a few hours just on a tear with shitty games and a pack of cigarettes. It's not a real way to live...

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Welcome! I hope this can be a safe place to open up about the issue for you. Even though it's "on the internet", I've always felt like the community is quite close and welcoming, so feel free to speak your mind.

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