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Dealing with gaming addiction?


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#1 metaphysicalstyles

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Posted 19 April 2012 - 03:36 PM

Because I'm such a bright individual, I've decided to ask the CAG community for advice! :dunce:

In all seriousness though, I'm currently dealing with a frustrating situation. I've been playing games for almost twenty-eight years, and still manage to carve out adequate time each week to devote to this activity. I'm also married, work full time, and have a two year old daughter. So as you can imagine, this adequate amount of time that I'm referring to is actually considerably less than what it was prior to getting married and having a kid. However, knowing that I have these additional responsibilities, I'm absolutely content with the approximate eight hours a week that I have for gaming.

Am I suffering from gaming addiction? No... not at all. Unfortunately, my wife is.

So my wife has a fairly serious gaming addiction, and before you say "hey man, that's fuckin' great!", it's actually fuckin' not.

My wife is a full time --edited--. So she works approximately 10 hours per day, four days a week. Therefore, she typically has three days off a week, and on work days, is home by approximately 6:00pm. Our daughter generally goes to bed at 8:00pm... at which time begins the only actual time that we have to ourselves. I certainly don't expect my wife to focus all of this free time on me, nor does she expect for me to do the same. We understand that there will be nights where we both just need time alone... time to play games, or watch programming that the other doesn't necessarily have an interest in.

This formula worked great for the first year following the birth of our daughter. But then, I bought my wife an iPad. You can probably see where this is going. We both have an arsenal of i-devices, and at first we embraced our i-device ownership as an additional element of commonality... ultimately giving us something else in common. We would scrounge around for sale apps (thanks CAG), recommend apps for one another, and play games cooperatively and competitively. Then I made the biggest mistake of my life and stumbled onto --title edited--. I downloaded the game the first day it hit the app store, and after finding it charming at first, I recommended that my wife try it out. Two weeks later, she decided to give it a whirl. Around this same time, I became bored by the game, and found it's "freemium" infrastructure to be ridiculously unbalanced. I opted to quit, and pitched my "they're just trying to milk players for every cent that they have" spiel to my wife in hopes that she would look at things logically, and drop the game before it started to become a financial burden. But she really enjoyed it... and because I'm a complete sucker/pushover, I value her happiness, and want to make sure that she remain happy in our life together. So I left it at that... --title edited-- was her thing, just like playing PS3 is mine.

Fast forward to today. The wife remains logged-in to the --titled edited-- server nearly 18 hours a day... regardless as to what else is going on. When at work, she leaves it up on her phone at her desk. At home, she'll have it open on her phone, which rarely leaves her hands. Going to the store, she's playing. In the bathroom, she's playing. Multitasking. Giving the baby a bath while playing. Cooking, and playing. After the baby goes to sleep, she takes a bath... and plays. Gets out of the bath, and plays... until she passes out. There's no interrupting this cycle. The only time she breaks from playing in the evenings is when there's a new episode of Game of Thrones or The Walking Dead. The rest of the time, she plays. In other words, more time is being spent playing than is participating in her daughter's life, participating in my life, adhering to typical daily responsibilities, managing her time at work, helping out at home, etc.

Oh... and she's not just playing, she paying. She currently spends approximately $150 per month on the game. This money is spent on mana, or "pots" as the players refer to it. These "pots" are what allows you to recharge your mana pool, which is the required element necessary to cast spells. Defeating "spirits" with spells yields experience, which leads to leveling, advancement up current campaign leaderboard for your region, and at the end of the campaign, a virtual medal for the campaign. You can also use "pots" to purchase chat avatars or designs for your in-game avatar. The game can be played without purchasing anything, however, to remain competitive, you almost have to pay to play. The mana regen rate is too slow for my rather impatient wife, and some spirits require more hits than you have in your mana pool. Once attacked, these spirits will retaliate until either you kill them or they kill you. Therefore, once your mana pool runs dry, it's essential that you use a "pot" to regenerate in order to defeat the spirit (if you so desire). So far, she has level capped six accounts, and has a total of seven alternative accounts that she uses for spying, power-leveling, and random community spoof nonsense.

The game is lame as Hell.

Then there's the community. There's a boatload of saps with an utter lack of self control that play as much, if not more, than my wife. They're all "friends" in this virtual world... and develop rather personal relationships. I get it, it's the general appeal about the whole MMORPG scene. She actively participates in the embedded team chat and cross-team chat within the game, PMs within the game, the official message boards on the official site for the game, and even dedicated groups on facebook. She even changed her facebook account to one specifically for her --edited-- persona. She canned all of her friends and family (including me), and has nothing but other --edited-- players in her friends list. It's reached a point where I believe the lines of reality have become blurred for her. WoW syndrome, if you will.

The fit hit the shan 16 weeks ago when I caught her having an affair of sorts with another player. I'm fairly certain they never met in real life, but their private message exchanges were rather shocking. Literally consisting of love letter quality content. Including tales of each individual's spouses almost catching them in the act. Shady-ass stuff. The community was even aware of this "relationship," and heralded it as a success story within the game. When I found out, I lost my shit. I found myself reprimanding my wife the way I would a teenager. Actually barring her from playing... questioning her role as a mother, a wife, a --edited--.

Two weeks later, she was back to playing.

It's progressively getting worse. She no longer is able to differentiate between what is important and what is not. Her daughter and I have been thrown to the side... her office work has reached a point where it nearly impossible to catch up in a reasonable amount of time. Every aspect of her real life is being neglected. Our marriage is permanently damaged because of this game. Her temper has been shortened when dealing with our daughter. Communication is non-existent... unless it's communication within the game.

I'm at a complete loss in this situation. Has anyone else had to deal with this kind of stuff? If so, how did you go about it? I would hate to have to resort to divorce because of a shitty iOS freemium MMORPG... but that may end up being my only option.

Edited by metaphysicalstyles, 20 April 2012 - 05:04 PM.

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#2 DuelLadyS

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Posted 19 April 2012 - 03:48 PM

This isn't something I've ever dealt with personally... but the fine people who make Extra Credits did a very personal 2-part episode on the subject of gaming addiction/complusion, which you can watch here (part 1) and here (part 2). As a result, their fan forum has had many a folk share their tales of the problem, or ask for help. Perhaps they can help steer you in the right direction.

#3 pitfallharry219

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Posted 19 April 2012 - 03:49 PM

Isn't this how Sp00ge lost his first wife?

#4 camoor

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Posted 19 April 2012 - 03:50 PM

Why don't you hire a professional and arrange for an intervention.

There's not much you can do if someone doesn't want help, but an intervention might be the push they need in the right direction.

#5 mightymek

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Posted 19 April 2012 - 03:55 PM

Hey man, I'm sorry to hear you're going through this. I really hope it works out and your wife comes to her senses. I don't think my situation was as severe as yours, but I myself had a small gaming addiction. Again, not as severe as your wife's, but all I wanted to fo was play. It affected my marriage, since my wife and I never did anything together. Then I would get mad at the games, and take it out on my wife. I got mad at the dogs all the time while playing if they were making too much noise. My gaming affected my school work, and I needed my wife's help to pass tests because I never prepared for them. All of this, plus other things that maybe didn't have to do with gaming, really put a strain on our relationship. Now, it wasn't all me, she always wanted to read her Kindle instead of doing things with me when the role was reversed. But needless to say, I definitely blamed my gaming addiction for messing up a lot in my marriage. I really hope your situation can get resolved. While I don't have nearly as bad of a gaming addiction anymore, I also no longer have a wife. It was a large price to pay to put my life in perspective. I hate a portion of myself for letting it get to that point, but at the same time, I am a better person now. I am focused on school, and I rarely ever play games (though I do seem to still buy them, lol, just not as often). I wish my marriage didn't have to get sacrificed to cure myself, but something needed to happen otherwise I would have just gotten worse. I am not telling you whatsoever to divorce your wife like my wife did to me, because I do hold a small amount of animosity towards her for not TRYING to work it out, like going to therapy, etc., and you have a kid, too, so it's definitely worth it to at least try to work it out with professional help before you go down the road to divorce. But it sounds like your wife definitely needs some extreme action to get her out of this phase. Good luck, and you can always PM me if you need someone to talk to.

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#6 dohdough

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Posted 19 April 2012 - 03:57 PM

Damn...you're in need of a professional here.

#7 Javery

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Posted 19 April 2012 - 04:02 PM

Holy crap dude - I don't know what you should do but your wife needs help. Your daughter is the most important thing in the world and she needs her mom to be completely focused on raising her (with you, of course).

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#8 mrspicytacoman

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Posted 19 April 2012 - 04:03 PM

so shes like the blonde chick from the guild lol?

The only way to get rid of an addiction is to replace it with something else. why dont the both of you play wow or tor together. Or just threaten divorce

#9 panzerfaust

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Posted 19 April 2012 - 04:09 PM

From what you described (and this goes for all gaming addictions, really), it has little to do with the software and everything to do with personal issues in your wife's life and relationships. Pretty personal stuff here, so I won't pry -- but tearing the game away isn't going to fix anything.

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#10 irideabike

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Posted 19 April 2012 - 04:36 PM

wow that sounds rough. I thought when my wife played farmville every few hours that it was a little much, can't even imagine what you're going through.

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#11 Clak

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Posted 19 April 2012 - 04:45 PM

Pretty surprising, most of the time this stuff seems to happen to folks without much of a life or career, your wife being a physician makes this different from any I've ever read before. I'd hope that being in health care herself, she'd agree to seeing a psychiatrist. Sounds like that's what she needs if she's going to break the addiction.
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#12 metaphysicalstyles

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Posted 19 April 2012 - 04:54 PM

This isn't something I've ever dealt with personally... but the fine people who make Extra Credits did a very personal 2-part episode on the subject of gaming addiction/complusion, which you can watch here (part 1) and here (part 2). As a result, their fan forum has had many a folk share their tales of the problem, or ask for help. Perhaps they can help steer you in the right direction.


Thanks for the advice... I'll check it out.

Why don't you hire a professional and arrange for an intervention.

There's not much you can do if someone doesn't want help, but an intervention might be the push they need in the right direction.


I've been down this road once before with her, but is was related to substance abuse. The problem with trying to find her help, or even staging an intervention, is that she views herself as an expert on the topic of addiction and other psychological disorders. --edited--. When I suggest such things of her, it's instantly disqualified, as I'm a lowly IT guy and she's a --edited--.

...I am not telling you whatsoever to divorce your wife like my wife did to me, because I do hold a small amount of animosity towards her for not TRYING to work it out, like going to therapy, etc., and you have a kid, too, so it's definitely worth it to at least try to work it out with professional help before you go down the road to divorce. But it sounds like your wife definitely needs some extreme action to get her out of this phase. Good luck, and you can always PM me if you need someone to talk to.


Holy shit, mek. I had no clue... and I'm very sorry to hear that such a scenario existed in your life. Your story sounds all too familiar... nearly the exact same boat I'm finding myself in. It actually saddens me that relationships perish by such trivial means. But I guess it's similar to gambling, or any other non-substance related addiction. It's the thrill, the sense of accomplishment, or community that people get hooked on.

Thank you for divulging such a personal story... it really helps put things in perspective. It's damn sad... and I hope that my situation doesn't result in such drastic measures.

I've thought about taking the same approach as your ex-wife with her kindle. But if I were to ramp up my gaming, it still wouldn't be a sufficient replacement for the lack of companionship that I'm experiencing. We're talking full on neglect. She will purposely pick fights with me in hopes that I leave her alone. Last night for example... I made some popcorn for her and took it upstairs to the bedroom (where she plays in the evening). I gave it to her and offered to watch some of the movies with her that she had mentioned on her facebook wall (which I have to lurk on... she won't friend me because I'm not a --title edited-- player). She responded by suggesting that I was "controlling" and "mean." But really what my perception heard was "I'm playing my game... go away." How can you get pissed at a guy in pajamas with a bowl of popcorn offering to watch the movies that you want to see?!

Last night, I re-downloaded the app, logged into the cross-team chat, and basically chastised the entire community with witticisms, and ranting banter. In doing so, I eluded to the problem I was faced with, and received a rather mixed reaction. It seems that the casual players who play infrequently jumped on the "urge her to quit" wagon, whereas the "lifers" criticized me for trying to take away something that my wife enjoys. Some even went as far as suggesting that she plays because I'm unable to please her in real life. Little do they know that my wife, or the real woman that they know as a variety of alternative names, has struggled in the past with addiction. But you can only go into so much detail when it's one-on-one-hundred. She even had the gall to apologize to the community... playing it off as if she was embarrassed by my actions.

I may continue this form of assault. Eventually people will become frustrated by my actions, and perhaps that will impact their perception of my wife.

Edited by metaphysicalstyles, 20 April 2012 - 03:34 PM.

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#13 MillerTime2523

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Posted 19 April 2012 - 05:06 PM

Man, that's rough OP. Not sure what I would do or if I could even give any advice, but just want to say that I hope whatever happens works out for you.

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#14 irideabike

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Posted 19 April 2012 - 05:35 PM

Back when I played a little too much videogames, the one thing my wife did was make sure to get everyone in my life involved. She brought it up constantly, around her parents, extended family, and my own. It got to the point where I just could not keep doing what I was doing and it hasn't been a problem since.

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#15 Gden

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Posted 19 April 2012 - 05:37 PM

I can't believe that she values your opinion less just because you aren't a doctor. More to the point, she's a physician, not a psychologist, so she doesn't necessarily know more about psychological issues, than you do. (yes, she probably knows a decent amount more, but still). The thing is, psychologists get addicted to things, too, as do physicians. She needs help, so I hope you get her the help she needs, before it creates a bigger rift between you two.
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#16 Donut2922

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Posted 19 April 2012 - 06:40 PM

With any addiction you need to cut off access to it and see help for the underlying addiction cause as its been mentioned before that it can be replaced with another game or activity anyway.

I am sorry for your issues bud.. If its any consolation i'm betting a good amount of cags are addicted to gaming and/or flipping. Everyday i try to keep my gaming to a reasonable amount and try to not let it take priority over my family and gym goals. Its tough cause i really love to game and have a certain level of addiction to it. Don't let those lifers of that community get to you. They're addicted themselves and the only thing worse than an addict is an addict that can't admit that they have a problem.

Just because you do something bad doesn't make you a horrible person. Focus your energy on the right actions to pull your family out of this and you guys will get out of this.

Edited by Donut2922, 19 April 2012 - 06:52 PM.


#17 Lice

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Posted 19 April 2012 - 07:00 PM

I dont think going about it by trying to stir up the community is the answer. Its just going to put more of a spotlight on the game being the problem when in turn its way deeper than that. If you become the bad guy it will be easier for her to justify the game over you.

If there was no daughter.... go at it... flip the digital table if you will... But you have a impressionable young human in your home. Go at it with appropriate means with professional help as this is a high level issue.

Dont go at this alone. I wish you all the best man.

#18 camoor

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Posted 19 April 2012 - 07:03 PM

I've been down this road once before with her, but is was related to substance abuse. The problem with trying to find her help, or even staging an intervention, is that she views herself as an expert on the topic of addiction and other psychological disorders. The bulk of her patients come to her for treatment of their various psychological disorders. When I suggest such things of her, it's instantly disqualified, as I'm a lowly IT guy and she's a Physician.


I thought that with an intervention you're supposed to surprise the person with a therapist and their family around. A therapist would be able to cut through her bullshit.

Admittedly I've only seen the TV shows but it seems like a compelling way to go to me.

I don't think that passive aggressive stuff with logging on and insulting her friends is going to work, it will just probably make her mad.

I'm no expert, just my two cents. You seem like a good guy and I wish you the best of luck.

#19 cheapfrag

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Posted 19 April 2012 - 07:04 PM

Is there some family on her side that you can engage in a conversation about it? Maybe keep a log for a week detailing her playing time and what "duties" are not getting done, then share it with her, or use it to explain to her family the seriousness of the issue.

#20 kodave

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Posted 19 April 2012 - 07:05 PM

I don't know how you and your wife handle your finances or what your income alone is doing your IT work, but you need to think about your daughter. You need to start squirreling money away on the side so that you can afford to hire a family law attorney. I figure if she's a physician she's probably pulling more money than you, so you need to be prepared since she can probably thrown down for an attorney. I'm not putting you down for working IT or whatever, but when shit REALLY hits the fan and attorneys are involved, you need to be able to protect yourself and your daughter.

Along the lines of protecting yourself and your daughter, you need to start documenting your wife's behavior in a concrete way so that it can be used as evidence in court. Print out her Facebook page, her message board posts, her chat logs, make copies of the credit card statements showing how much she is spending on the game, etc. As a father, if it comes to divorce and custody issues, it's going to be more of an uphill battle so you need all of the ammo you can get. Because in the worst case scenario, you're heading for divorce and it would be bad for your daughter to live alone in that kind of environment with her mother. You need to be able to get full custody of her.

From various online MMORPG things I've read regarding addiction, it seems like she's ripe to get to the point where she's going to up and leave for someone she met over the game. Or at the very least, take her virtual affair to the real world in some very physical manifestation. I just had a friend lose his long term live in girlfriend. She sat around unemployed playing WoW while my friend supported her "stay at home wife" kind of lifestyle. She met some dude in New York on WoW and moved from Kentucky to be with him.

It would be great if you could get help for your wife from a psychologist, but that will be an uphill battle. You also probably need marriage counseling from a therapist at this point too. I hope you are able to do these things and save your marriage. But seriously, get your finances in order so you can win a legal battle with attorneys if necessary. Not for you, but for your daughter.


#21 camoor

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Posted 19 April 2012 - 07:06 PM

I am sorry for your issues bud.. If its any consolation i'm betting a good amount of cags are addicted to gaming and/or flipping.


I don't. Gaming is just like any other hobby, you're just buying into cheap TV stereotypes.

In a week I play 4 hours tops and I bet there are a bunch of guys in the deals section that are just like me.

#22 blindinglights

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Posted 19 April 2012 - 07:37 PM

I've thought about taking the same approach as your ex-wife with her kindle. But if I were to ramp up my gaming, it still wouldn't be a sufficient replacement for the lack of companionship that I'm experiencing. We're talking full on neglect. She will purposely pick fights with me in hopes that I leave her alone. Last night for example... I made some popcorn for her and took it upstairs to the bedroom (where she plays in the evening). I gave it to her and offered to watch some of the movies with her that she had mentioned on her facebook wall (which I have to lurk on... she won't friend me because I'm not a Shadow Cities player). She responded by suggesting that I was "controlling" and "mean." But really what my perception heard was "I'm playing my game... go away." How can you get pissed at a guy in pajamas with a bowl of popcorn offering to watch the movies that you want to see?!

I've even thought about going as far a creating a mock flirtation ring with some old friend from college or something in an attempt to get her attention. But I fear that her diabolical nature would somehow catapult my actions into being more of a problem than her gaming.



I think you've got this all backwards. It sounds like the real problem is with how she feels about her relationship/life with you and the game is merely a vehicle for her to escape from it. Not to say that you've done anything wrong, but it sure sounds to me -- from what little information you've posted -- that she's really trying to escape from her "real life" every chance she gets.

You definitely need to seek professional help. Maybe even some marriage counseling could help bring out whatever is really making her unhappy.

The only real advice I can give is to tell you that stooping down to the level of flirting with someone just to get a reaction out of her is not going to do anything good for the problem. Don't let her behavior alter yours.
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#23 metaphysicalstyles

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Posted 19 April 2012 - 07:52 PM

Is there some family on her side that you can engage in a conversation about it? Maybe keep a log for a week detailing her playing time and what "duties" are not getting done, then share it with her, or use it to explain to her family the seriousness of the issue.


Her family lives over three hours away. Her mother and father are divorced, and apparently following the divorce, the kids (my wife and her brother) were viewed as more of a burden. Of course, as adults, they have gained enough independence that there's no need to rely on the parents. But with both parents leading individual lives with new families, there's exponentially less support. I've gone to them for support several times, and the reply is always the same. "Well, that's just how she is."

I've been documenting her activity for a few weeks now. I've even captured video of her strung out on sleeping pills to the point to where she's unresponsive.

I don't know how you and your wife handle your finances or what your income alone is doing your IT work, but you need to think about your daughter. You need to start squirreling money away...


You're absolutely right. I make decent money, but she easily makes twice as much. Fortunately, I'm responsible for the family budget, and am able to manage the money accordingly. So yes... I probably need to start holding back some cash if things get nasty.
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#24 kodave

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Posted 19 April 2012 - 07:56 PM

You're absolutely right. I make decent money, but she easily makes twice as much. Fortunately, I'm responsible for the family budget, and am able to manage the money accordingly. So yes... I probably need to start holding back some cash if things get nasty.


Good luck. I hope you are able to get her help and get your relationship help for the sake of your family. Its good you're willing to prepare for the worst case scenario.


#25 metaphysicalstyles

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Posted 19 April 2012 - 08:03 PM

I think you've got this all backwards...


Unfortunately, nothing is backwards in this instance. My wife is an introvert. She could be happy the rest of her life with nobody around. She's even cut her family out of her life... including her brother who she claims to love so much. She has what some would say is an "addictive personality." She has already had battles with --edited--

--edited--

This may be getting a bit too personal... so I'll leave it at that.

Edited by metaphysicalstyles, 20 April 2012 - 03:29 PM.

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#26 iamsobroke

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Posted 19 April 2012 - 08:10 PM

It sounds like you need to get your ass off this forum(no offense) and call someone for professional help. Maybe you and her should take a family vacation for a week with no distractions, and get all of this settled on your own and really discuss what's the underlying issue to this behavior. DO NOT point out things she needs to stop doing, instead think of solutions to both of your problems and how both of you can overcome it. I can guarantee if you go in with an attitude that this is all her fault, then nothing will get sorted out.

#27 shrike4242

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Posted 19 April 2012 - 08:19 PM

Steps I'd recommend, which I think will be echoing a few things said by others:

1) Squirrel away some money for the purposes of family counseling as well as a family lawyer. Your wife is pretty much working towards abandoning the marriage and her parental responsibilities, so some professional intervention is required at this point.
2) If her name is on any of the bills, it's time to put them in your name and make sure they're being taken care of. Since you mention that you're managing the family money, it should already be this way.
3) Is she using her own credit card for the in-game purchases or is it a shared card? If it's a shared card, cancel it and get a new one in its place that's only in your name. If she doesn't have a card in her name only, this is the time to have that done.
4) Do you know any of her co-workers, which I'm assuming to be other medical professionals? Do they know about these issues, and if they do, what do they think about it? If not, this is the time to let them know what's going on.
5) Is there anyone you could leave your daughter with for an extended period of time, so you can concentrate on trying to fix these issues with your wife? Since you said that your wife's family isn't an option, how about your parents or other relatives?
6) There's always the option of going cold-turkey on the cell phone and iPad by cutting off her access to those items. I don't think it'll go well, though making access to the game harder than it is now might kick her towards getting her head out of her backside.
7) Have you confronted your wife about this emotional friend she's picked up and her emotional infidelity?
8) Keep documenting everything as you've been doing, as it's just getting her to dig the hole she's in even deeper than it is. If things get bad enough and lawyers get involved, the more evidence you have, the better. Family counseling would find that documentation helpful as well if she pulls a "he's lying, there isn't any issue" when trying to get you all some help.

sp00ge went through this with his previous wife and it was eerily the same that you're going through. I'm not sure if he'd want to talk with you about this type of situation, though I know he's gone down this situation like you're dealing with it.

It's a bad situation you're in OP, and since she's had addiction issues prior to this, she's already having two strikes against you. You need to make sure your daughter's well being is first on your list of things to worry about, right behind your own. You all need help to get through this, sooner than later. I hope it'll all work out in some way.

#28 The Great Muta

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Posted 20 April 2012 - 09:00 AM

Really sorry about your wife's addiction. Reading through what you wrote, and I gotta be honest, I cringed a few times—especially during the "multitasking" and "fit hitting the shan" parts.

In the past, I've had experience dealing with people who have had addictions, including games. Usually, when someone lets themselves become addicted to something it's because they something in real life isn't to their liking, and they're trying to escape. This could be stress, work, illness, etc. The addiction part happens because they never want to return from fantasy land, and assume responsibility.

Now, all of the relationships (friendships, romances) I've had with people with addictions haven't ended well, so take my words with that in mind.

As everyone has said, I'd make your daughter a high priority. It's crazy to think your wife/a mother would put a silly game ahead of their own child's well-being, but that's addiction for ya. Giant hat tip to Shrike. I wholeheartedly agree with his lines of thought. My only suggestion is consulting family of hers and yours that you trust, and possibly setting up an intervention, which hopefully leads to counseling.

My best to you and your daughter. Good luck. I hope this all renders in a favorable outcome to you and your daughter.

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Posted 20 April 2012 - 09:28 AM

First of all get counseling or therapy. If your wife isn't willing to go with you, go by yourself. Right now OP you really need support, and counseling or therapy will empower you.

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#30 DOMINATOR912

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Posted 20 April 2012 - 01:26 PM

Having played an MMO for a few years, I've seen addiction of this level happen to other players. It's alot different in your case, since this game can be played on iPhone you can technically play nonstop and continue with your life. The only thing that I've seen that can snap these people out of this "trance" is a massive slap in the face (metaphorical :D ). Something big has to happen for your wife to get knocked free of the game. Unfortunately, it has to be something pretty harsh like a divorce threat and I'm not really sure thats a path you'd want to go down since it could backfire. It's a good thing you're documenting everything, since if it all does fall apart, you'd probably get full custody of your daughter.