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Woman tells husband, 'You have a CREEPY ADDICTION;' Husband is shocked,' Oh PLEASE, you're just NEEDY!' AITA? UPDATED 2X

Woman tells husband, 'You have a CREEPY ADDICTION;' Husband is shocked,' Oh PLEASE, you're just NEEDY!' AITA? UPDATED 2X


When this woman is concerned about her husband, she asks the internet:

"My Husband is an addict and it's tearing my marriage apart. AITA?"

I am struggling so much with my husband. I am at the end of my rope because of the aggression, lying, and excessive playing my husband does. I feel like an idiot because he told me the game ruined prior relationships, but he had stopped playing, so I had no idea how bad it could be. Honestly it's a creepy and sad addiction.

His family even warned me, but I loved him and thought he was on a healthy path. He wasn't.

A few months after we started dating, he started playing again. His habits kept getting worse and worse. He argued even about eating dinner together or greeting me when I got home from work.

He would tell me to wait a minute before he greeted me then 45 mins to an hour would pass. He never wants to do anything but the game now.

Every time I ask him to go out and do something he acts like I'm intruding into his life. I'm a third wheel to his computer. Every time I talk about the gaming, he gets defensive and says it's not the problem.

I recorded his hours for a bit so that I could show him how much he plays. 3-6 hours on weeknights and over 16 hours on the weekend, and that was only during the time I was awake. He didn't care. He only said I shouldn't depend on him so much and that I shouldn't be needy.

Meanwhile, I have a million hobbies and travel and work a lot. I spend at least one or two days of the week out of the house with friends- he's always invited, but rarely goes. I have no ground to stand on in this relationship. I fight for every minute we spend together.

I fight to eat dinner together. I fight to work out together. He constantly lies about the gaming and says he will play less then it only lasts a few days because he gets back into it. He's started to be emotionally abusive when I get more and more upset about it. No he tells me to "shut the f up!" And "f off!"

When I try to communicate my needs. I started going to marriage counseling alone since he agreed to go and never did, and I've been trying to work on myself if not for this relationship, for myself.

I don't know if my marriage can be made right because he promised he would cut down to two days a week last night then this morning changed it to 2-3 days a week. Not even 12 hours have passed, and he already changed the terms. I know it's gotten super unhealthy.

I even had to call into work one day because I was starting a new job and I wanted us to go to bed at the same time since I had been sleeping alone while he plays in the night. He said ok, then was super anxious to get back to the game so much so that I ended up giving up and telling him to go ahead and play.

I was so sad about it that I was up the whole night and when I woke up I had a migraine. It hits me in waves of grief. I cry a lot like he died because the person I knew is gone. I keep trying to come to terms with reality, but it's hard. I don't want him to be unhappy, but I don't make him happy.

Only the game does. I know no one would blame me if I left, but I still find it hard. I know I can't do this much longer, and I hope he wakes up.

I asked him several times to release me from this marriage if he doesn't want to take an active part in it, but he always says he wants to change.

I've read a million articles, watched a million videos, and I've even found other people who got divorced because of gaming who agreed to talk with him(he said no), but none of helped. It seems like everything I do or ask for makes it worse. I don't think he really wants to quit.

He wants me to be here but live my life alone, and that's what I have been doing for two years. Have any of you experienced this? I don't know what will help. I don't know if it's hopeless, or if I'm an idiot for wasting my time. I have two husbands, the one I fell in love with, and the one that only cares about about World of Warcraft.

I started to talk with family and friends about it. I was quiet about it for a long time because I was so ashamed to say that my husband would rather game than spend time with me. It made me feel so lame, but I'm embracing how I feel now. I feel terrible. I feel alone. I feel hopeless about the marriage.

I feel stupid for getting into it in the first place. I feel very vulnerable to even hope that he's telling the truth this time. He said a few minutes ago that I was trying to control his life... That's what I get when I ask for us to spend time together without a screen.

Before we give you OP's update, let's take a look at some of the top responses:

strangeluv7 writes:

Developers and engineers work around the clock to make the game as addicting as possible so it's no wonder so many couples face this challenge. My wife and I did, and it was exactly as you described even down to the timeframe.

I think an addiction to an innocent seeming thing like a game, that costs only 15 bucks a month, isn't taken seriously enough. It really wrecks people's lives.

For me the trick was deleting or giving away everything in game, then removing the game from my computer, changing the personal information and password on my account after unsubscribing, changed the password to a mishmash of characters.

I then wiped my computer, full disk format, and reinstalled windows fresh. Even though I know this could all be undone, it would be tedious and painful.

Finally I knew I couldn't just unsubscribe then sit around. Wow is a purely psychological experience so I needed to be mentally stimulated or I would go back eventually.

So I got a puppy, went back to the gym, binge watched some good shows I'd heard about, started reading a trilogy I'd heard about, now I'm fiddling with home automation, and having a healthy amount of "intimacy" with my wife. Now I'm happier than ever and she is too.

Maybe share my experience with him and see if he might have the courage to try this out. Also I eliminated all references and reminders of the game. Gone without a trace, and I avoid friends that still play which are very few anyway. Good luck.

viepax writes:

Even when I played 8-15 hours a day I was still constantly aware of my partner and my kids, and that I was neglecting there needs and quality time with time.

I would on most days tell my family that I would just finish this dungeon/ quest / level and then I’d spend some time with them, but as always the game would distort my sense of time and next thing I know it’s midnight and my whole house is asleep.

I took a note one of my children wrote my partner about how dad never spends time with him because he’s to busy playing his game to kinda give me a slap around the face.

I haven’t played WoW for over two months now and I am so much more productive and I have a much healthier relationship with my family, and I am thankful for there patience with me, that being said if at my most addictive...

had my partner gave me an a choice family or WoW it saddens me to say that I would have just put my headphones back on and logged back in.

Wow addiction is horrible because we’re only ever taught about being addicted to drugs, alcohol and gambling so we don’t look for signs that we are addicted to a game.

Also a big part of the addiction comes from not having anything of worth in real life, career, hobbies and the like , it’s easy to become addicted if your addiction is more rewarding than real life.

hahaty writes:

I'm not going to get on you about paragraphs! :)Your husband is really sick. He's in full-blown addiction and in the precontemplation stage of change.

This means that he has no intention of getting well, he's only entertaining you when you confront him to get you off of his back. I'm sorry to say it but it is true. I'm a licensed therapist and I work with people struggling with addiction.

Having said that you on the other hand are in the preparation stage of making change, which is leaving your addicted husband. The reason you aren't in the action stage, after reading your post and comments, is your love for your husband and your belief that he will get better.

Unfortunately I can tell you he is not going to get better any time soon, and the fact that he's been in this situation time and time again tells me that it is going to repeat itself.

All you can do is what's best for you and your family (didn't catch if you have kids). If you want to keep up this charade with him then stay, but if you are tired of it you have to leave.

There is no guilt or shame in leaving a person who is choosing to stay addicted to a substance or behavior that has ruined their life and damaged the lives of the people around them.

Life is short and your happiness is important. You are only responsible for your own happiness and mental health, not his. He's got to step up and do what he needs to do which is a lot of therapy.

Feel free to message me if you have any questions or need support. This isn't going to be easy but if you want to be happy it's what you have to do. Hope to talk to you soon.

gagay000 writes:

I was addicted for 3 years, first year I logged 132 days played, 2nd year was 135, 3rd year was only 90. My wife always wanted me to quit citing the same things you have.

For what it's worth I didn't care about anything she said, ever, it was all about downplaying it and getting back to the game. I was depressed, got laid off and accumulated debt during the recession.

Got a shitty job and stayed there for 7 years. I hated my life but wow was great. My friends all had similar interests and I could ignore the bullshit that was real life for seemingly as long as possible.

I remember telling time by watching shadows on the side of a building while my wife was working 9 hours a day. I was a scumbag. Truthfully. The changes I made came from a few things my wife did for me.

She actually talked to me about the game, she took an interest instead of hating it (at least pretended) we talked about why it was important to me and the led into what's important to her. It woke me up.

We set rules, specifically if your husband raids, you need to know his schedule and what his teams goals are and realistically assess what they're capable of.

My family's rules were one raid of 4 hours a week, half was covered by my wife (getting the kids breakfast and ready for the day) and the other half she would go to work and I was REQUIRED to address the kids' issues if they arose.

Our rules also said I pretty much could play whenever she was working as much as I wanted as long as the house was clean, the kids were happy, I kept my job, and on our days off together I could play but had to quit when she asked, without any fuss or "one minute" shit.

This allowed me to get my wow chores done, spend some time goofing off but made me leave that world so my wife wouldn't have to clean. 6 years later I told my raid team this morning was my last raid.

Im advancing my degree for a 20% salary bump and we're closing on our house in 13 days. My kids are 7, 6, and 3 and I'm looking forward to spending my Saturday mornings with them now.

Kind of rambling here my insight is that you need to understand why the game is important to him so you two can compromise as adults. If he does compromise you should expect to also with your expectations. If he understands why the game is important, maybe he can make his time in game more efficient.

If the game is a coping mechanism for some issues he has hopefully he can realize that and fix a root cause. Hope this was helpful as I kind of needed a place to say this stuff also.

grseee writes:

There is no cutting back for him. He either quits cold turkey or he keeps playing 100%. WoW is not a game you can cut back on with any real success. It's not designed to be casual, ESPECIALLY if he's playing Classic WoW.

You can't control his actions, only yours. You seem to have a good handle on this already (and bravo on going to therapy), but the next step for you is getting some distance. Rather than going for a full divorce, maybe talk about a trial separation. Or go stay with a friend/parents/family for a week.

It may give you both some perspective and he may finally decide on his own which is more important to him: you or the game. Your goal is not to give him an ultimatum, here, but to let him see that you and his addiction cannot co-exist.

Realize this is truly an addiction for him. It's probably not really about WoW, it's probably an escape from some other issue he's dealing with, be it depression or boredom or something else.

Don't demonize the game itself, that will only make him defensive. I'm not a therapist so I can't tell you how, exactly, to get to the root of why he feels the need to play this game so much but that's what it will take.

For me, when I was lost in my addiction to WoW (the first time), it took my then girlfriend/now wife breaking up with me for me to see what I was doing. I "knew" I was addicted when I was playing, but I turned a blind eye to what that addiction was doing to my life.

And in the end, it turned out I was depressed, frustrated with life, grieving the loss of a family member, and having trouble coping with my work and school load, so I turned to a game to escape.

Unfortunately, that game provided the perfect escape, consuming everything. It's not necessarily that WoW, itself, is to blame. It's just the perfect means to an end for someone looking for a way out.

Update 1:

My ex actually said he wishes he would have destroyed his computer sooner if he knew what the game would have cost him.

He did try to change after I had moved out for 7 months, but he had his chance. He has a deep deep regret and went into a depression, and he said he ruined his computer because he was so angry at himself.

I had to block him everywhere because of all the drunk texting and calling. He actually got picked up and taken to a mental health evaluation one day because of the regret, and it almost cost him his job. I hope his life will get better one day, but addictive gaming costed him dearly.

I hope that doesn't happen to your husband. I would say, be really clear about the consequences, and follow through. I am so happy now. I didn't know quite how sad and lame my life had become before I left. I was so alone.

Update 2:

It helped a ton! I actually still go to counseling every two weeks. I hope things get better for you soon. I don't know if it's better to be around him because he's their dad or not because being ignored like that is probably pretty awful for them.

My dad was like that with tv, and I grew to hate him as a kid. We never had a good relationship because he ignored all his kids and didn't provide us with even minor emotional support.

I think that is one of the reasons I put up with my ex as long as I did and why the counseling helps so much. It's very cliche, but I was stuck in a loop reliving the past each day, and it helped me walk away from the past and the situation that was causing me to relive it.

My real problem (and I'm not saying that this is the case for you or anyone else) is that I put up with it or even considered continuing on with it when it got completely out of control like it did with my ex. It helped me examine the why's.

Sources: Reddit
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