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OCD, Gaming, Ruining Experiences – Lost my Lifeline

fightoffyour

fightoffyour

Member
Joined
Sep 1, 2015
Messages
17
Hi all, I hope you’re keeping safe and well in this crazy world we are finding ourselves in.
I apologise in advance if this is quite a long message. I also appreciate it that it may well come across as asking for reassurance, but I’m not sure where else to go. I’m hoping by just writing about it will help, but if in any way this post, or any replies I am kind enough to receive help me reclaim what I have lost, well, that would just be an amazing feat.
For a brief bit of background on myself, I am male, 32, and suffer from Pure-O, borderline personality disorder and on-and-off depression.
Growing up, I would always feel that I didn’t fit in, or that I wasn’t cool enough, or that I was undeserving of happiness or nice things. Because of this I would always try too hard, be super over the top or just ask for reassurance in a huge way.
Because my world and my head were a very lonely place, I would seek comfort in worlds that I could escape in and these would provide me with places to feel safe, content, accepted.
These ‘worlds’ would typically be music and computer games. I became absolutely OBSESSED with music from a young age, seeking solace in music, the bands, the songwriters and the lyricists. My teenage years are nothing but a blur of music, reading into words and feeling their pain and like I belonged. It wasn’t particularly healthy I know, but it got me through.
A few years ago, I completely ruined my experience with music by getting an obsession into my head that I couldn’t listen to these bands unless I had made contact with the artists, spoke with them and effectively received their permission to listen to them. This validation and longing seemed vital to me, even though I had listened to the music for years. It became an obsession and after months of reaching out to them on social media etc, I had worked myself into such a frenzy that I was completely unable to listen to my childhood bands anymore. Some artists responded to me in a positive way, others ignored me completely, others were angry and blocked me. I understand that completely. I became obsessed and would sometimes send 10-15 messages, apologising for hassling them, effectively pouring my heart out, telling them my problems, asking for permission to listen to them.

I managed to ruin so many bands, that I can't listen to them anymore. It sounds trivial, but it was my lifeline and I miss it so much. Because music built my formative years, I feel as though I've lost a bit of my childhood.

I have conceded that I will never get that back and I have lost it forever. That is heartbreaking but it is what it is. Art is such a personal thing, that I can't help but feel that if the artist hates me, then I can't listen to their music or relate to them.

The real thing which is now breaking my heart and making me very unhappy, is the fact I am slowly ruining my other passion and escapism - video games.

I know that it is a trait of my conditions to sabotage things that I love, and although I deal with that every day, there are some things I cannot get past.

I look for connections in things and ways that some things and products are linked. If I feel I have ruined a certain game for myself, I then can't play another game by the same company, or who uses the same voice actor. It's crazy, because I know most game studios have 100s of people working for them, and there isn't one person who is the creator (unlike perhaps a songwriter), but I can't help it.

The main reason and game for my sadness is the game Fallout (and the other games in the series). The 4 recent Fallout games have been such a source of happiness, relaxation and therapy for me, but I feel as though I can't play them anymore.

The reason for this is ridiculous. I saw an article about a fan reaching out to the creators, saying how much the game meant to them. They received a nice response. I also then read awful tweets some other people sent the creators, slagging off the games.

Up until this point I had never reached out to the creators because I didn't want anything to jeopardise anything for me. At this point, seeing these other conversations triggered me, and I felt I had to validate the fact that I deserved to play the games by reaching out.

At this point, I was also talking to some people who ran a Fallout podcast (unofficial), who I spoke to in a nice way, and I also had a massive case of the flu (this was a couple of years ago).

I was tempted to reach out to the creators to say how much the game has changed my life, how much I needed it etc. But I don't think I did. But I honestly cannot remember if I did or not, because at that time, I was blindly firing off 10's of messages a day sometimes to things which I loved.

To be clear, I was never rude, or offensive to people. But I just must have seemed absolutely mental to them.

I can't remember if I reached out to anyone connected to Fallout or not, but I remember worrying that something had someone ruined it. I remember that feeling so clearly. I then put the game down and couldn't play it any more.

I miss it so much. I have been wanting to play it again recently, to have that escapism, that joy, but I just can't. It feels so invalid. Which I know doesn't make sense, but I just can't explain it.

I'm not sure what I'm hoping to get from this, and I'm sorry for going on. But I just can't seem to beat this.

I appreciate given the current climate this may seem trivial. But these things are my rock, they are what have stopped me from self-harm in the past, or given me a reason to be alive during my darkest times.

Thank you for listening x
 
N

Narcissist714

ACCOUNT CLOSED
Joined
Jun 14, 2020
Messages
117
Location
Bompton
What happens if you keep listening to the bands you ruined? Do you feel anxiety or you simply don’t enjoy it anymore? Or it doesn’t feel ‘right’ which leads to anxiety ?What would happen if you were to continue playing fall out?
 
fightoffyour

fightoffyour

Member
Joined
Sep 1, 2015
Messages
17
Hi there, thank you for your reply and apologies for the delay.

I am sometimes able to get enjoyment from it, but it feels altered and that the connection that I had before isn't the same. If I were to continue playing it, I would enjoy the game because I love it, but it would be tainted because of the feeling that I shouldn't be playing and that I'm not allowed to. If the creators who's heart and soul went into it (I appreciate this sounds dramatic) influence the game and my enjoyment of it, I can't enjoy it or deserve to play it if there's a chance they think badly of me.
 
N

Narcissist714

ACCOUNT CLOSED
Joined
Jun 14, 2020
Messages
117
Location
Bompton
You bought the game right? And you bought the CDs from the bands I’m assuming. That’s more than enough. You don’t need to ask them for permission. By buying the cds and the games, you already have their permission. Their purpose is to make something that people can enjoy and to make money off of it. You paid money for it and now you get to enjoy it.

Telling you this might help temporarily but if it’s ocd then I’m just giving you reassurance and the anxiety and guilt will probably get worse.

ocd is more of a feeling problem. You feel like something is not right but it’s just a false feeling created from an irrational way of thinking. You can change the way you feel by allowing yourself to feel the negative feeling associated with the thought. That negative feeling will eventually go away the more you allow yourself to feel it without doing anything to get rid of it.

what would I do in your situation is to keep on listening to all the bands in your childhood and keep playing fall out. The thought that youre not allowed to listen or play the game will come up and the feeling that you shouldn’t be playing will come up, but keep listening and playing as if those thoughts and feelings are not important. It’s going to be hard at first and takes a lot of willpower but it will get easier if you stick through it all the way.
 
fightoffyour

fightoffyour

Member
Joined
Sep 1, 2015
Messages
17
Thank you for taking the time to reply again and apologies again for the delay. That is true re. the permission. I suppose my worry is that if I then did something to taint that (i.e. by reaching out to them a lot and getting blocked, or ignored) then it means I am undeserving and perhaps justifiably so!

I also know that I have too much of a connection to the things I get comfort from and place too much significance on the people behind it and their relationship to me.

I have started a game of Fallout and have tried to listen to the bands. It is getting easier. It isn't the same, but it's easier. I suppose where is the line though? Say if I knew a singer hated me (i.e. if they were an ex), would that then mean I couldn't listen to them? I'm just thinking out loud.
 
Drawings_T

Drawings_T

Active member
Joined
Feb 21, 2020
Messages
41
Location
SW London
I can totally get this, although I don't have this specific OCD at the moment. I did go through a phase of wanting things to be perfect and protected from being tainted. I've had many different types. I avoided certain places in the past because of OCD, well I still do a bit if I'm honest. I have to fight it.

I think it's great you did get solace from those things. A lot of my 'solace' in my youth was from drugs and acting like a general idiot, when I got any. You sound like a sensitive person, if that's OK to say that. I really am, as much as I wish I wasn't sometimes. I have massive hangups about people I've offended and want to make them right. I think I can really relate though, to the idea that those things were spoiled. I guess the OCD is trying to make sure the music is perfect, that the people who made it are perfect, that your relationship with them is perfect.

I think what most people would say is that you should just go ahead and listen / play the games and hopefully the compulsion will go away. I think what's certain is that you won't make it better by doing any kind of ritual, contacting people and so on. The OCD has latched on to the fact you love these things and is trying to ruin them for you. It always seems to do that - tries to spoil what you like most. I have it with my art. Like something I do will cause harm to somebody somehow.

I think nobody is expected to have any kind of relationship with their favourite musicians. Sometimes people find out they aren't that nice anyway if they do get to meet them. In my opinion you have absolutely no obligation to tell them anything. I've occasionally contacted people to explain that I did one thing or another due to OCD, but that wasn't as a compulsion, it was more just to explain, and I didn't feel I needed one type of reply or another.

Can you see it like - I was into music in this way when I was younger, then I started having problems with it, now I know I have OCD I can start to enjoy it again. Don't try to make it how it was before, we all change, and we remember things differently looking back. Just enjoy what you like now.
 
fightoffyour

fightoffyour

Member
Joined
Sep 1, 2015
Messages
17
Drawings_T: Thank you for your message. I'm sorry to hear you struggle too. The last paragraph "Can you see it like - I was into music in this way when I was younger, then I started having problems with it, now I know I have OCD I can start to enjoy it again. Don't try to make it how it was before, we all change, and we remember things differently looking back. Just enjoy what you like now" - that really resonates and I will use it. Thank you.
 
U

undone

New member
Joined
Jul 3, 2020
Messages
2
Location
USA
Hi all, I hope you’re keeping safe and well in this crazy world we are finding ourselves in.
I apologise in advance if this is quite a long message. I also appreciate it that it may well come across as asking for reassurance, but I’m not sure where else to go. I’m hoping by just writing about it will help, but if in any way this post, or any replies I am kind enough to receive help me reclaim what I have lost, well, that would just be an amazing feat.
For a brief bit of background on myself, I am male, 32, and suffer from Pure-O, borderline personality disorder and on-and-off depression.
Growing up, I would always feel that I didn’t fit in, or that I wasn’t cool enough, or that I was undeserving of happiness or nice things. Because of this I would always try too hard, be super over the top or just ask for reassurance in a huge way.
Because my world and my head were a very lonely place, I would seek comfort in worlds that I could escape in and these would provide me with places to feel safe, content, accepted.
These ‘worlds’ would typically be music and computer games. I became absolutely OBSESSED with music from a young age, seeking solace in music, the bands, the songwriters and the lyricists. My teenage years are nothing but a blur of music, reading into words and feeling their pain and like I belonged. It wasn’t particularly healthy I know, but it got me through.
A few years ago, I completely ruined my experience with music by getting an obsession into my head that I couldn’t listen to these bands unless I had made contact with the artists, spoke with them and effectively received their permission to listen to them. This validation and longing seemed vital to me, even though I had listened to the music for years. It became an obsession and after months of reaching out to them on social media etc, I had worked myself into such a frenzy that I was completely unable to listen to my childhood bands anymore. Some artists responded to me in a positive way, others ignored me completely, others were angry and blocked me. I understand that completely. I became obsessed and would sometimes send 10-15 messages, apologising for hassling them, effectively pouring my heart out, telling them my problems, asking for permission to listen to them.

I managed to ruin so many bands, that I can't listen to them anymore. It sounds trivial, but it was my lifeline and I miss it so much. Because music built my formative years, I feel as though I've lost a bit of my childhood.

I have conceded that I will never get that back and I have lost it forever. That is heartbreaking but it is what it is. Art is such a personal thing, that I can't help but feel that if the artist hates me, then I can't listen to their music or relate to them.

The real thing which is now breaking my heart and making me very unhappy, is the fact I am slowly ruining my other passion and escapism - video games.

I know that it is a trait of my conditions to sabotage things that I love, and although I deal with that every day, there are some things I cannot get past.

I look for connections in things and ways that some things and products are linked. If I feel I have ruined a certain game for myself, I then can't play another game by the same company, or who uses the same voice actor. It's crazy, because I know most game studios have 100s of people working for them, and there isn't one person who is the creator (unlike perhaps a songwriter), but I can't help it.

The main reason and game for my sadness is the game Fallout (and the other games in the series). The 4 recent Fallout games have been such a source of happiness, relaxation and therapy for me, but I feel as though I can't play them anymore.

The reason for this is ridiculous. I saw an article about a fan reaching out to the creators, saying how much the game meant to them. They received a nice response. I also then read awful tweets some other people sent the creators, slagging off the games.

Up until this point I had never reached out to the creators because I didn't want anything to jeopardise anything for me. At this point, seeing these other conversations triggered me, and I felt I had to validate the fact that I deserved to play the games by reaching out.

At this point, I was also talking to some people who ran a Fallout podcast (unofficial), who I spoke to in a nice way, and I also had a massive case of the flu (this was a couple of years ago).

I was tempted to reach out to the creators to say how much the game has changed my life, how much I needed it etc. But I don't think I did. But I honestly cannot remember if I did or not, because at that time, I was blindly firing off 10's of messages a day sometimes to things which I loved.

To be clear, I was never rude, or offensive to people. But I just must have seemed absolutely mental to them.

I can't remember if I reached out to anyone connected to Fallout or not, but I remember worrying that something had someone ruined it. I remember that feeling so clearly. I then put the game down and couldn't play it any more.

I miss it so much. I have been wanting to play it again recently, to have that escapism, that joy, but I just can't. It feels so invalid. Which I know doesn't make sense, but I just can't explain it.

I'm not sure what I'm hoping to get from this, and I'm sorry for going on. But I just can't seem to beat this.

I appreciate given the current climate this may seem trivial. But these things are my rock, they are what have stopped me from self-harm in the past, or given me a reason to be alive during my darkest times.

Thank you for listening x
i am also preoccupied with whether or not i will "ruin" hobbies for myself, so i can completely understand and relate to this. based on the way you wrote your post, i feel a connection to you, in that i think our brains work in mechanically similar ways, though i do not have bpd.

i'm sorry you've gone through this your whole life. every day is a struggle for me yet i toil on.

i don't have much advice to offer, i just want to send peace and comfort your way.
 
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