An Anime Fan as An Adult

I’m an adult.

Well… I’m technically one. I’m of age, but I’m definitely not the mental age of the mature adult that everyone expects. Anyway, it may sound like I’m saying all these out of the blue, but I would like to reflect on how adult life has been influencing my hobbies, in this case — anime, games and whatnot. The short answer? Not good.

The older you grow, the more the responsibilities you bear and the obligations you have. You just have more things to worry about, from career to relationships to pretty much everything that has to do with this dumb thing called “life”. It can get extremely difficult to watch anime, play games; with all the stresses and hardships of real life, bearing down on you like shackles chained on your ankles. These days, instead of enjoying anime, I spent more time complaining about how I worry I can’t enjoy them. The fucking irony.

It’s not like I can’t physically find the time for them though. I can, but whether or not I can get into the mood for them is the main problem I have as an adult anime fan. And let me tell you — it’s tough.

Even if I’m not in the mood for them, I can of course force myself to watch anime or games, but that’s a horrible way to immerse into your hobbies. I begun to just play games just for the sake of playing games and it just feels like a grind — there’s just no way to properly enjoy them in this way. Of course, I can look at the titles in an objective manner, and identify which parts are good, which parts are bad and which parts are the highlight of the series and whatnot, but there’s no personal enjoyment at that point. Like I can identify it as “fun”, but I personally can’t find it fun, due to all the problems surrounding my real life.

There was that one year when I was immensely stressed, and I somehow grind and finished all available Ys games at the time. It sounds amazing on paper, but let me say this — it wasn’t fun. Of course, aforementioned, I can identify them as “fun”, but I personally can’t find it fun at all. It was… hell, in more ways than one. I want to watch anime and play games because I seek the fun and enjoyment to escape from the clutches of life, but I can’t escape when the hardships of life is shackling me like that.

Nowadays, I tend to avoid “grinding” through my games like a madman. Instead, I became very selective over which anime to watch or what games to play, depending on my mood. In some cases, I almost became masochistic and ended up playing games I didn’t even want to play just to pass time. Like why the hell did I just read through 24 volumes of just “mostly okay” light novel; why the hell did I just watch this terrible action movie; why in the blue hell am I playing mobage, something I actually hate with a fucking passion. I have mountains of great visual novels I want to play; I want to play Trails of Zero, Azure and Cold Steel — but my fucking life just won’t let me. I have had it, just what the hell should I do? I don’t want to go back to that period when I can’t even find the act of playing games fun, but that also means doing a bunch of secondary stuffs which I may not necessarily want to. I’m just constantly stuck between a rock and a hard place.

Although now that I have experienced all these issues, I have learned to cherish the time that I have — and I mean “time” when I’m actually in the proper mood to emotionally invest in my hobbies. I may technically have time, but “time” like those are truly, and I mean truly, few and far in between. And this is just about the most positive way I can think of to wrap this post up. Unless all my problems magically disappear, this isn’t something I can just solve overnight and go back to my old days of properly enjoying anime and games. Being able to do that just feels like such a distant past at this point.

So I will continue to be a bitter, petty asshole of an “adult”, but at the very least, I want to spare all these bitterness and negativity from my hobbies. Life is tough and instead of forcing myself and ruining my hobbies, I might as well forsake them and return later in a hopefully more optimal circumstance. That’s exactly why games and visual novels are so hard on me these days, since they require the most time and emotional investment out of all the anime media I’m immersed in. So I don’t have a choice — I can only look forward to the next time I can properly play games, and cherish those rare times and my ability to still be able to feel this emotion of enjoyment.

But still… I really want to play Cold Steel, man.

This entry was posted by Kai.

6 thoughts on “An Anime Fan as An Adult

  1. I have to admit, I can relate to this. Compared to my gap year and even the time I was in collage, I have a lot of time to play games. Granted, it takes a while since I play them in Japanese and not English. Now that I started working again back in February of last year, I somehow keep buying games and don’t complete that many Not to mention, my backlog of Anime keeps growing too, although it somewhat went down during the delays in new shows in the Spring and Summer, but it’s back where it is now.

    But it seems that enjoying hobbies is hard when one is an adult because the lack of time. By the time one retires, he or she becomes too old to enjoy the things they want to do.

    • In my case, it’s not like I can’t physically find the time for them. But I’m just not mentally there to be able to enjoy them, it’s tough. Life is stressing me out to the point that sometimes I prefer to rest and even practically do nothing for extended lengths of time. People always tell you to “get a life” when you’re not doing anything of note and stuffs, but there’s an argument to be made that going to work, talking to people and forcefully fitting in society makes you even more lifeless in comparison. Constantly feels like I’m suffocating these days, games are the least of my worries even if I actually do have time for them… Not much I can do, and I understand it’s necessary… still doesn’t make me feel any better though.

  2. I absolutely hear you on this. I had a time a few years ago when I was under so much stress that I couldn’t enjoy anything at all; even playing games or watching anime did nothing for me, and I stopped writing for long stretches. Sometimes you have to take some time and see how things develop. I hope you can enjoy them again soon, but certainly forcing it is no good.

    • Yeah, I learned not to force things the hard way. That’s why I hesitate and stall my games so much these days, it may be a “smarter” way to do it, but I still really hope life would stop throwing so much shit at me. Oh well…

  3. I can relate to the part, about the part, that it is essential to be in the right mood for a hobby,
    last year was terrible in that regard and I have been quite depressed about not being in the mood at all.

    New Year I decided that I won’t happen again and invested more time in my blog again.
    Next to anime, photography and doing stuff, blogging is one of my biggest hobbies after all.

    Except something cool is aired on TV I watch anime every night (I repeat, every night),
    I became more picky about the things I watch and will easily say “that is junk”
    I don’t know some new anime is really great, but often I think that all have been better during 2010’s.

    • I think it’s fine to step away for a while if the mood is just not in the right place. Life sucks and there’s already so much negativity there, there’s no need to bog down your favorite things in negativity as well.

      Watching anime on TV as they aired is tough imo, because again, I’m not necessarily (almost never, even) in the mood to watch them when they air, lol. That being said, I haven’t watch a lot of anime these days, especially the new ones.

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