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Obsession and Compulsion

Discussion in 'Alley of Dangerous Angles' started by Late-Night Thinker, Jul 5, 2003.

  1. Late-Night Thinker Gems: 17/31
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    I have been doing a lot of thinking lately, probably more so than usual. Most of it has been centered around my life and the actions I have taken to make it such.

    I recently stopped using drugs and alcohol. Recent means about a month and a half. While that may not sound like much to the average person, for me, this is nothing short of a miracle. I believe I have been granted a temporary respite from the abuse of addiction contingent on my spiritual growth. If I do not grow as a person, I will pick up where I left off and most likely it will be the death of my body or my mind.

    I had some really bad things happen to me as a child. At a young age I started reading fantasy novels and playing role-playing games and I believe this provided me a safe place. While the abuse stopped at a young age, the anguish did not; I have spent a large percentage of my life in that safe place. When I got a little older, the drugs and alcohol helped to insure that place was numbly safe. Unfortunatly, that numbness was deadly and in fact caused much more pain that it insulated me from.

    I am twenty-three years old now. I want to change. For a very long time I believed I was incapable of significant change. Due to the grace of God, I can change my actions today. I don't have to get bombed today. This has shown me that I can change other obsessions and compulsions in my life. That other is role-playing games.

    Right off the bat, I want to point out that I realize this is going to sound crazy. I have some sort of mental obsession with role-playing games. I find it difficult to fall asleep at night without thinking about them. Lately, creating a party for Baldur's Gate 2 has been the current obsession. I have realized that this is in fact an unanswerable riddle, with the answer not being the goal, but the thought process itself the goal. I no longer want to play this kind of mental game.

    I no longer want to play the games themselves either. I am an intelligent and kind individual who instead of spending time with other human beings, spends most of my free time alone on a computer. Role-playing characters and people over the internet do not count; the time is spent alone. I am going to change this.

    I am not saying the games themselves are bad, it is my addictive reaction to them that is.

    I found it impossible to quit drinking and drugging alone, it was done with the help of a lot of very caring individuals. With this problem, I am asking for your guys help. Do any of you share similar problems as my own?

    I am going to be hanging around for a few more days till this thread is finished up and then I will have to leave. It is for my own good. I wouldn't have quit drinking if I kept going to bars and I am not going to be able to quite RPG's if keep coming here.

    You guys are some of the most intelligent people I have ever met online. I hope nothing but the best for you all.
     
  2. Rotku

    Rotku I believe I can fly Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!)

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    Well done quiting drugs/drinking. But it will be a shame to see you go from SP. You know you could probably continue playing RPGs and coming here, aslong as you set your self strict limits, and keep to them.
    Well good bye, I think everyone here will miss you. Hope everything goes well. :wave:
     
  3. Platter

    Platter Can I buy you a tankard or two, lad? Veteran

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    I know how you feel. Sometimes I fantasize about destroying my computer so I'm not tempted to use it all day.

    No suggestions for a cure though, still haven't found one.
     
  4. 8people

    8people 8 is just another way of looking at infinite ★ SPS Account Holder Adored Veteran

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    [​IMG] If you live near a library have a look - they often have information on clubs in the area.

    I understand about the obsession over RPGs. Probably because I get obsessed over lots of little, unimportant things. Recently I got rid of several pieces of paper I'd grown rather attatched to :doh:

    I usually find the best way to get over things is to leave them for about a fortnight, prehaps buy the first in a series of books, instead of doing an RPG, read the book, if it's good you can get the next in the series, and so on, then you can usually go back to whatever you were avoiding without being obsessed.

    Because if you have something else to do, you don't get need it and don't get so obsessed because your attention is spared for other things as well.

    I hope this works if you try it. And I hope you will come back if you do leave :wave:
     
  5. Iago Gems: 24/31
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    I don't think it sounds crazy to be addicted to Role-Playing games. Or computer games in general. Been there, done that. And there are a lot of internet-sites, where people describe how they broke their game-cd's to never ever play the game in question anymore. Well I'm guessing than, that your thinking about cancelling your internet connection or get rid of the computer.

    For me personally, the big change came when I finished school. The job I got kept me away from the computer, whereas back in school I played like hell. It gave me some equilibrium school, synonym for endless boredom, couldn't give.

    That reminds me, I overheard an employee in a bookshop. People who read books are like junkies. They come at least every two weeks, whatsoever is happening. They need their dose.

    Well, I have somehow the feeling, people leaving this place in masses, lately. Goodbye to you and I hope you get it done. :) :wave:
     
  6. chevalier

    chevalier Knight of Everfull Chalice ★ SPS Account Holder Veteran

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    I know what you're talking about. It's good you've quit drinking and drugs. With RPGs it's more the matter of how and what you play than playing itself, but if you feel it's good for you to leave RPG, leave RPG.

    As I have said, I know what you're talking about. I've been through addiction to PC which has never been confirmed medically or otherwise, but at some point I changed my attitude without even limiting the time spent doing things on the computer. I play games because and when I have nothing better to do - except the first time playing a nice game, it's still a hobby. I browse the internet when I get a nice link or when I need to find something. I'm freed of playing games for the sake of it, of mindless surfing and of pointless chatting. I can also survive normal holidays and study for exams when I have to. I suppose those changes followed general changes in my life. Of course, what is now is not perfect and from many points of view it's not even good. Perhaps. But it's I to choose my kind of diversion and if I'm going to 'waste' time, I'm going to 'waste' it my way. Technically and contrary to what many people believe, there's no difference between playing stupid non-PC games, reading stupid books of low literary worth and watching stupid movies on one side and surfing, posting, chatting and playing PC games on the other side. So long as you don't get addicted the way you get addicted to alcohol or drugs - but I believe I haven't. I used to score over twice the biggest described number of points if open-end addiction tests (even though I could live without my PC), now I score even less than most accidental users. I also no longer let myself get anxious or frustrated about computer-related things. I keep the distance and don't get involved too much. I don't have to have games so soon as they're released, I look things up in solutions when needed (rather than reloading thousand times) and use CLUA sort of cheats to deal with bugs. I no longer keep an eye on current computer or fantasy-related issues and don't desire to know or have it all. Note that 16 hours of continous presence of the nick chevalier in #sorcerers is still nothing uncommon ;)

    I wish you all the best on your new way and I will all but try to influence your decision. God keep an eye on you! ;)

    [ July 05, 2003, 14:21: Message edited by: chevalier ]
     
  7. joacqin

    joacqin Confused Jerk Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    If you have been addicted to drugs of various kinds so is it not strange that you seek out god and for instance role-playing. It is more or less impossible to not be addicted after you get hooked. The 'easiest' way is to exchange one addiction for another. Which is what you are doing, even if it isnt consciously. It is much more healthy to be addicted and obsessive on religion and roleplaying games than booze and smack. I would say that you should perhaps even now in the beginning of your detox throw yourself even deeper into your games and your faith to distract you fully from whatever temptations you might encounter. You can always moderate it in a few years when you are home free.
     
  8. Splunge

    Splunge Bhaal’s financial advisor Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    L-N.T.:

    I understand where you are coming from. I too realised recently (about 2 months ago) I was drinking too much and decided to cut it way back; I’m lucky in that I stopped before it got completely out of hand. I think that, in part, joining SP has helped me keep my mind off of it.

    As far as your “addiction” to RPG’s, my question is this – is it interfering with your everyday life? Or, more accurately, has it (or is it starting to) take over your life? From your post, I’m not really sure if you are there yet, or whether you are afriad that you are in danger of that happening.
    This may or may not be bad. If staying away from other people means staying away from alcohol and drugs (because that was what your friends did), then it's the lesser (much lesser) of two evils. If, on the other hand, you are staying away because you you would rather spend time on your computer instead of spending time with people who would not be a bad influence drug and alcohol-wise, this may be unhealthy.

    Having said all that, I'm not a psychologist. I'm not sure if the "caring individuals" you refer to included anyone with professional training, but if not, I would encourage you to talk to someone who actually has the skills and knowledge needed to give you some real and useful advice. The problem with me trying to help is that, aside from a lack of training, I have no idea who you are or what kind of help you really need by reading some anonymous posts on an internet board.

    I wish you all the best and hope that you are successful in battling whatever demons (in a non-RPG sense) you are facing.

    [ July 05, 2003, 17:23: Message edited by: Splunge ]
     
  9. Laches Gems: 19/31
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    I've never had an addiction so I'm really unqualified to say anything. However, here I go anyways. What if you find a healthy addiction to replace the unhealthy one with? Like PC games replaced alcohol and was an improvement something healthier to replace that with.

    Chris Mullin was an NBA basketball player, a great one, and a member of the original Dream Team. He was also an alcoholic. He quit in 1987-1988 and replaced alcohol with -- showers. Like 12 a day sometimes. He would wear his swim trunks so it wasn't a bona fide shower really, go into the shower with his dog, and just try to wind down under the hot water. He also became a reknowned gym rat.

    I'm in the local running club. I know one guy there who very publicly used to be an alcoholic and took up running. He now runs religiously - it has taken the place of alcohol. I don't think he had a problem meeting people but by joining a running club he has a built in support group of sorts.

    Now, gyms are tricky because some gyms aren't particularly welcoming. Every running club I've ever been around though has all levels of runners so it is good even for a beginner. You go and meet up with a bunch of people and then you run together - long days, short days, track time etc.

    Whether running or working out is for you or not, there is some healthy addiction out there for you. Maybe you could pick one which involves you with a group and go for it. The nice thing about running or any physical activity is it will make you feel better and it's a hella lot cheaper than beer (although doc trips if you've got weak anckles could add up over the years - be safe.)

    Good luck.
     
  10. Malaqai Gems: 4/31
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    Trust me. RPG-ing (pen&paper) with your friends will only strenghten the bond between you, and it will give you an excuse to habg around. Drop CRPGs, they are what causes your problems. I had a similar problem---I was and I am obsessed with fantasy, but I think it is healthy cause it helped me get thru the toughest period of my life, when I had to "brake-up" with me old mates cause they started drinking a lot and doing drugs. I basicly had no friends for about 18 months. I was alone. But fantasy pulled me through it, pulled me through all the long and boring days, all the days until I found 2 real friends.


    I'm still addicted to fantasy, but I don't consume everything I can now, I "do" fantasy every day for about an hour or so. And that is the key. Moderation. Aurea mediocritas.
     
  11. Pac man Gems: 25/31
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    I wouldn't know anything about addiction to roleplaying and stuff, but i do however escape reality from time to time, with a combination of alcohol and cocaine, while sitting in front of the PC. I'm not addicted to anything though, but if you wanna ask me something about this, feel free to PM me, cause i'm not about to share things like this with the rest of the world on a public messageboard.
     
  12. Late-Night Thinker Gems: 17/31
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    Hmm...I think the title of the thread was more my aim for discussion rather than the particular of the drugs and alcohol. I am an addict...so not using chemicals is tough and to be honest, unnatural for me. Hence, I tend to speak (or write) about drugs and alcohol when I am in fact speaking to myself. When I write I am an addict I am telling myself I can't use drugs. Thus I think I managed to obscure the real point I was trying to make.

    Mental obsession.

    Circular thinking.

    Obtrusive thoughts.

    This is Baldur's Gate 2 for me.

    I no longer want to think about the game, yet I do. I no longer want to play it, yet I think about it often. I am constantly creating characters (a halfing thief has been the current one) in my head. I am constantly creating parties in my head. I have stopped writing them down. At one point I had almost an entire notebook full of characters and parties. This is not healthy.

    It can be hard to describe. For example, lately I have had reoccuring thoughts of the spell Cone of Cold. I have been thinking of casting invis on my character and then casting cone of cold with just the right amount of lead time so as not to get swarmed before it goes off. This thought brings a certain measure of joy to me and even energizes me to a degree. I would not be surprised if my pupils dialate during the mental visualization.

    When I am driving or trying to go to sleep I find I am thinking about Baldur's Gate Two the most. Especially when I am trying to go to sleep. When I awake, it not long before I have thought of the game again.

    I want this to end.

    One of the things I have learned recently due to my quiting of drugs and alcohol is that actions effect thinking. Thinking does not effect actions much.

    Trying to think differently while doing the same actions will not result in much success.

    Doing different actions will change your thinking almost regardless of your willingness.

    Hence, I will never play that game again. It will take time, probably a lot longer than I would like, but the mental obsession will go away. With nothing to sustain it, it is just a matter of time.
     
  13. Daie d'Malkin

    Daie d'Malkin Shoulda gone to Specsavers

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    Good for you man.
    It sounds like the rpg-ing is like a way of overcoming the other stuff. This is good, but since it seems to have taken over, giving it uo is the best idea. You have to find something else tom live for.
    Try reading. It helps me calm down when I'm depressed(seriously).
    Hope it goes well for you.
     
  14. rastilin Gems: 8/31
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    It sounds to me like you have an obsessive personality and EVERYTHING you do will become an obsession, if you react that way to games I shudder to think what books will do to you. If it were me I'd get to the root of the problem, because that is not a nice way to live.
     
  15. Late-Night Thinker Gems: 17/31
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    Nope, that's really not true. I threw away all my Infinity Engine games and that as they say, is that.
     
  16. Kralizek Gems: 7/31
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    First of all, I would like to say that I admire you for being able to come out and talk freely about your addictions. God knows it is a very difficult thing to do, IMO because it means that you have to confess it to yourself first.
    Having said that, I think you did a good thing in getting rid of the game from your pc. Hope you can keep up with your decision and be sure that I cheer for you.
    Turn to the people you love, and that love you. Nothing can help you better than that. No disrespect meant to any board (I personally am quite new to this form of communication, and I must say I enjoy it :) ) but nothing beats a nice, deep, involving, one-on-one discussion. As you said, actions do affect thinking. Use that to your advantage. I personally find team sports to be great in this respect. The action, and the involvment help me to keep my mind away from... well, basically everything. And it is pretty healthy, too ;)
    I hope this does not sound like I am trying to teach anything... I just can give you my personal experiences.
    Anyway, I whish you the best in your life !
     
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