At some point one of the things I realized about my relationship to videogame was that it had stopped yielding any positive dividend. Where as a teenager I was mostly a social recluse, it gave me a topic to talk about with others and some kind of input to my emotions. Maybe in a way, I was getting some kind of emotional input out of videogames. I thought I could identify with characters that I could not fundamentally share experiences with.
Maybe something was wrong with my head, I used to wonder - it kept me from socializing with people properly. My parents often told me when I asked that therapy or counseling was pointless. I would only get told “what I wanted to hear” and that I was better off learning from life.
My brother used to take me by the wrist and drag me out to parties. I drank a lot, probably starting somewhere around 13-14. That was what I did: meet my brothers friends and drink with them. They became my friends and basically the only friends I had.
I could still not identify with people in videogames like I was told I was supposed to. A teacher I had used to get on me for the things I liked reading. “They were for people a lot older.” she would say. Truthfully, I didn’t really identify or share any emotional experiences with the people in those books either.
For a long time I felt pretty hollow as a teenager. I would dress it up in a lot of overly poetic philosophy that I stole from other places. Someone explained to me then that I had been looking at it all wrong. There was no point in trying to find some kind of emotional kinship with people who would save the world - what you were supposed to do was feed your experiences in them.
Someone had to explain to me how to have an emotional connection with a work of art. Since then, one of my darker habits has been that I would rather have an emotional connection with a work of creativity than I would any person I’ve probably ever met. Relationships are temporary, fiction is immortal.