After watching Danny's latest video on the link between depression and video games, I figured I'd say a few words about it.
Firstly, I'd like to say that, while I have had bouts of what I believe to be depression, I have never been medically diagnosed with it. I guess I know what it feels like to feel a sense of hopelessness for long periods of time, and these feelings tend to come in waves rather than be constant.
Being seventeen is difficult in a lot of ways. It's this kind of limbo of self-discovery, you're this not-quite-developed human, insecure about everything. The kind of things that are currently life shattering I'm sure will make no difference to my life in a year, or a month, or a week. It's not so much that teenagers have it worse off, it's just our Weltanshauung isn't developed yet. We think the world has it in for us.
I'm sure a lot of people on here remember what it's like to be where I am now. I'm weeks away from some potentially life altering exams, and I'm sat here doing anything but revising. I'm playing League of Legends, or an instrument, or smoking pot, or writing this. I'm in that spiral of de-motivation that leads only to further de-motivation.
And all of the aforementioned things work in the same way. They detach you from the world in the most exquisite way for only a brief time. I can spend my evenings playing LoL and feel satisfied for accomplishing things in its pseudo-world like I would do in my real world.
If I actually did anything.
My point is, if I'm depressed right now, gaming isn't making it any better. And while that doesn't mean to say that there isn't a situation where it does (I know immersing myself in Just Cause 2 for a while seriously helped my depression subside), context is key when referring to any correlation.
Some games like World Of Warcraft create a community that may promote continuous play in the same way stoners will promote continuous use weed. What most people call addiction in these cases I call obsession: you don't need it, but being surrounded by it is certainly better than 'real life'.
Unfortunately, obsession is often how depression manifests itself. Be it an MMORPG, drugs, or that girl who spoke to you once, we get sad and chase the things we think will change our lives, even if it's only briefly. It's finding a balance that is crucial, something I've yet to be able to do...
You know what, I think I'll get some work done. Thanks for reading.