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I'm Addicted To Video Games And Can't Control Myself

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This guy’s name is Simon, and like many others, he has played video games since he was a little kid. Only for him it turned into an addiction that made his life much harder.

Before he turned 15, he played video games a lot, but not so much that it ruined his grades or affected other aspects of his life. Then, his friends introduced him to one competitive online game . They always played together, talking through their microphones, and it was a lot of fun – chatting with his friends while working together as a team.

Soon, his friends moved on to other games, but he stuck with the same one. It wasn’t just FUN for Simon, it also was interesting for him to develop skills at it. Deep down, he dreamed of becoming a professional gamer one day, and all his free time went into this. Basically, it felt like he was doing something useful.

Before games had been just about having fun – the same as, like, watching a movie or reading a book, you know? But now it felt like it was a whole lifestyle.

Simon spent all of his free time playing it, usually right until morning. He was always sleepy and exhausted at school, and he spent every free minute there thinking about the game. And then as soon as he got home, he would start playing it again.

Usually his plan was that he would play a bit and then do his homework and chores, but then it was one more hour, then two, three, five...and then it was morning again.

At this point his grades started to seriously go down, and needless to say, his friends had long forgotten about him, because he was obsessed with the game. But he didn’t really care, because he was getting better and better at it, so other stuff didn’t matter.

But it got worse. Simon started putting real money into the game. He saved on lunch money and his overall allowance from his parents, and paid for additional stuff within the game.

His parents didn’t notice at first, because they worked a lot and didn’t have time to pay such close attention. This allowed him to even miss school in order to play sometimes. This situation went on for at least half a year. He managed to study as much as it was needed not to fail completely, but that was it.

He was very irritable, angry and rude at that time – he argued with other players in the game and insulted them. The funny thing is that he had seen players like that since the first day he’d played the game, but he always laughed at them, thinking he would never go over to the “dark side” like them.

The same thing was happening in real life – he was craving to get back to playing the game the whole day at school, and he got annoyed when someone tried to talk to him about their stupid problems.

When his grades became so bad that he began to actually fail, his parents finally caught on to what was happening, and took his computer away from him. He tried to explain to them that what he was doing was worth it, and you can make millions as a professional player, but they didn’t listen.

So he did the only “reasonable” thing he could in that situation – he started playing a cheap mobile knock-off of the game. But soon they took his phone away from him as well. Simon was even madder than the first time, and he refused to listen to them, but with time, he started to comprehend the seriousness of the situation he was in…

Before his addiction started, Simon had been a good student. Now he was failing at almost every subject. Even gym class! The teachers explained to him and his parents that he would either have to go to a summer school or repeat a year at least to have a chance of passing his exams later.

The realization of how much he’d screwed up was devastating for him. He felt like he had literally destroyed his chances of having a bright future or going to college because of his stupid and unrealistic dream of becoming a professional gamer. Because in reality, only one person out of several thousand has a chance of becoming a pro.

He decided to devote his entire summer to studying, and although it was sad and hard for him, he just about managed to recover for the next year.

His parents were very understanding and gave him his computer and phone back as soon as they saw that he was working hard on correcting his mistakes.

So, now Simon’s kind of okay; he still finds it hard to study and prepare for exams, but at least he stopped ruining his chances while he still could.

He doesn’t think that video games are bad, and he hopes that he will be able to get back to playing them when his situation is better. Not like he did last year, but like before – when he played games just for a few hours every other day...until then, he needs to keep away from them.

Music by Epidemic Sound:

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