I was addicted to video games for more than a decade.
No matter how many times I unplugged, I plugged back in.
After lots of digging, I discovered this programming deep in my psyche: “Something is wrong with you. It’s not okay to be you.”
I used video games to run away from it. At least in a video game I could work towards being a worthy avatar with the best weapons and armor and pretend for a moment that nothing was wrong with me. But no amount of in-game achievements could kill the self-hatred boogeyman.
The only way out of this predicament was to turn around and face the boogeyman, so that’s what I did. It tore me to emotional shreds with its hateful remarks as I gave it my undivided attention. But I survived, and learned the ins and outs of my addiction.
The self-hatred boogeyman was not a boogeyman after all. It was just a shadow that needed illumination.