Posted in Games That Mean A Lot To Me", Mental Health, Mental Health From My Perspective!, Video Games

Skyrim Saved My Life

Yesterday was Skyrim’s 10th anniversary, and I figured today would be the perfect time to rewrite one of my older posts; I was preoccupied yesterday.
Video games often catch the blame for violent events around the world, so here is a positive gaming story.

Skyrim saved my life.

The start of 2015 was traumatic for me. I had lost my Nan to cancer and the relationship I was in at the time ended in a cruel manner days after her funeral. By text message no less.As you can imagine, this didn’t do wonders for my mental health. It in fact sent me into the hardest mental health spiral that I had dealt with so far in my life.

It was too much for my mind to process. In my head, I really needed that boyfriend to help me through the tough times that were ahead. I had bought him Valentine’s Day gifts; I had planned for us to dine out at the restaurant he liked, but it was for nothing. After such a life-altering experience, I wanted normality, that break up, combined with my Nan’s passing, felt like life had pulled the rug out from beneath me.

Any form of self-care had been thrown out the window at this stage. It felt as if every fiber of my being was consumed with grief. I was barely able to sleep. I couldn’t eat, when I did it was always junk food. I’d self-medicate. I spent most of the time cooped up in my bedroom crying the days away.

It got to the point that people would genuinely question if I was even alive. I didn’t look after myself at all.

Video games were one of the few things that I could focus on; Skyrim was the one that I contiuned playing, though. Whenever dark thoughts entered my mind, I would just throw myself back into the vast game world. When I was invested in Skyrim, it kept my attention away from dark, toxic thoughts.

I’d set myself an objective. If I wanted to use a certain “shout” in my characters builds, I’d set off and learn it. If I wanted a specific piece of equipment, I’d ensure my character had the correlating skills and materials.
I had this vast world in front of me and I could make the most of it. My character could go wherever she wanted and didn’t owe anybody a single thing.

My character didn’t have any worries. She wasn’t being held back by events beyond her control. Despite a rocky start to her adventure into the land of Skyrim, she was free to live the way she wanted to. She could be who she wanted to be. She was free, and I admired that fact.

I then asked myself, why couldn’t I live the way I wanted? Why should I be held back by events that I had no control over? It was at this stage, I realised that I was in dire need of help. I reached out to anybody I could, just to talk in some cases, and it felt so cathartic being able to release the build-up of pain into the world.

I’m not going to pretend that I’m not haunted by things from this time in my life, recovery isn’t a linear process after all, but I am adjusting more each day. As hard as these experiences were, I now appreciate each day I wake up because it’s a brand new opportunity to live the life that I want to life, and be the person that I want to be.

I wouldn’t be here if I hadn’t had that epiphany, and I wouldn’t have reached that point without Skyrim.

Thank you, Bethesda. You truly saved me from a dark time in my life.

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I'm Stacey and I'm 30 years old. I write about life, mental health, video games & everything in between!

4 thoughts on “Skyrim Saved My Life

  1. I’m sorry for what happened to you. But I’m very glad that Skyrim gave you the handles you needed to get back on track. I hope it will keep providing you with good feelings whenever you may need them. 😊


  2. Great post. I’m sorry to hear you went through all that. Skyrim is definitely a great game to escape reality when times are tough. I still have two character builds I’m not finished with there since I’m trying to clear other games from my backlog but I always come back to Skyrim! It’s great to hear you were able to use it to take your mind off things. Lok Thu’um.


  3. I’m sorry you had to go through that, but it’s great that you found an outlet in Skyrim. Sometimes you need something to focus on to give your brain both a break and a chance to rethink and regroup, and games can be amazing for that. And Skyrim is just amazing in general, so, good choice haha! 😊


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