Virtual Reality

Ryan - San Luis Obispo, California
Entered on November 13, 2008
Age Group: 18 - 30

I believe that videogames can help you through a crisis. I started playing video games since I was only a year old. Playing learning games with my parents on the floor of the living room in front of the television. As I got older the games got more complex, but they were just as fun. My parents were constantly busy, during the day my dad was off running his kitchen cabinet company, and at night my mom worked an almost graveyard shift at UPS. But I could always play games when they were both home, or when only one of them was home. Even if it was playing Sonic, Pac-man, or anything else we could all just relax for a moment and spend time with each other. Yes there were other things I could do with my parents. When I just spent time with my dad we watched and played sports. When I was with my mom we could cook, draw, basically anything with creativity, but when we were all together we could always play games. Everything in life seemed perfect, but then one day it all fell apart.

I had been able to play games with my parents all the way up until I was twelve years old but then it changed. My parents gave me the news that they were getting a divorce. I came to learn that after my mom moved out I would spend exactly half of my remaining days until I left to college with both my parents equally. This meant following a tireless schedule of two days with mom, two with dad, and then three with mom. Then to complicate matters more the schedule would switch the next week. An endless, repeating schedule between two households, living two different lives. Everything I had ever remembered about my past seemed to change in one instant. But as my parents disgust of each other grew there was only one thing that I had left that could remind me of the times when they were together. Yes I could remember the holidays perhaps but there was only one thing I always did with both of them, play games. After my parents divorced I found that when anything had me upset, or anything made me frustrated, there was always one thing that I could do to settle my nerves. While most of peers turned to questionable habits of drinking and doing drugs, I calmed my nerves with video games. Anytime I was upset I could just reabsorb my self in those times so long ago.

So now today I find myself with almost a Zen like temper, nothing can make me upset anymore. Simply because I can always come home, turn on my video games and watch all my problems dissolve as I get sucked into a virtual world, a mirror of my past. There is always criticism about the increasing gore and violence in video games, but really deep down they are all the same. They are made with one purpose, for the gamer to have fun. And although most games I play now are violent and graphic, they lower my temper but more importantly put me back on the floor of the living room with my parents, safely at home once again.