(Apologies in advance for the long post)
I'm posting here because I'm very grateful for having found this website. I had no clue I even had a problem with online gaming
until reading the Eqdailygrind blog. After reading my story, you will realize how ridiculous that statement really is. My reason for posting is to "give back a little bit" by showing some insight into the mind of a compulsive gamer. I hope to show that we can justify to ourselves any length of gameplay without even realizing that there is a problem. I'm 22 years old with a WoW account that has about 150 days /played. I used to rent a nice apartment, long term relationship, good job. I live at my mom's now.
I bought WoW on release day because I wanted a new game to play in the hour or so that I had after work, before my girlfriend got home. You guessed it, I started playing all day every day. I've always played games, but, never this much. I started staying home from work, sick days, vacation days, overtime bank, whatever excuse I could use. After a month, our sex life was all but gone. It wasn't that I would rather play WoW (which is how my gf saw it), but I just had no interest/sex drive all of a sudden. She is unbelievably attractive, but I realize now my reluctance led her to believe I thought otherwise. We stopped going out together, and once again, I didn't particularly want to play WoW instead, I just didn't feel like going out with her although I loved her very much. If she seemed upset or angry, I would suggest we go out, but only because her mood made me feel bad. She usually declined, under these circumstances, I couldnt blame her... but I started to resent that she was always mad about my game but didn't want to go out even if I was clearly just giving in.
I left her 6 months after WoW release. The resentment and guilt grew too much, I could see that I was hurting her, but at the time I felt she was being unfair. Any sane person could see that I ended it because I was devoting myself to WoW. I didn't see it that way- I had myself convinced it was a hundred other reasons. She remains my closest non-gamer friend although we talk once a week on the phone at most.
I eventually quit my job. I could no longer wake up in time for my early start. I slept through every alarm I bought. I couldn't manage to fall asleep before 4am and my shift started at 6. I thought my sleep problems were depression, and I didn't know what was causing it, certainly not Wow, it was just something to pass the time harmlessly. I'm very depressed outside the game even for the 5 minutes it takes for fast food drive thru. Now all I do is play, I dont work. I stole money to buy a game card (I maxed my CC already), I told myself I just needed something to do while I look for a job. I honestly hadn't realized until finding this site that I hadn't made any effort to job hunt since then. The truth is, in the back of my mind, I couldn't bear to leave the game, even if it was just until i could afford it again.
Thats the point I want to make here. Your husbands and wives are not just telling you they don't have a gaming problem, they probably don't even know. The people close to me have been telling me all along I have a problem with WoW - I never even considered it to be the truth, and I never even realized just how little time I was spending with loved ones. The game is so much fun and time absolutely flies when you play it. But constant play has so many side effects on your life- sleep loss, loss of sex drive, less interest in work, hobbies and social interaction. Your SO will replace these simply by playing more, and will consider it a harmless way to spend a "little time", without realizing that the game is actually causing these changes. He/she will see your efforts to get him off the game as your way of forcing him to do only what you want him to do.
My suggestion to gamer widows? Show your SO http://eqdailygrind.blogspot.com/
. I happened upon that website recently by chance (while looking for reading material while grinding, no less) and it hit me like a freight train. I feel like somebody made a website to describe me. My relationship and job are gone for good, but thanks to that blog and this site, I can at least start to understand exactly why. I bet that sure sounds stupid to a non-gamer who thinks I purposefully gave it all up just to slay pictures of dragons.