Pokemon Go – Battling Mental Illness While Catching ‘Em All

Pokemon Go – Battling Mental Illness While Catching ‘Em All

Pokemon Go has been a big help to people suffering from mental illnesses from depression to PTSD. I have been battling low grade depression since I was in my early twenties. I stumbled a lot during those times; bouncing from prozac to zoloft which has been working great for me for many years. Most people mix antidepressants with exercise and yoga, I found my stride with this. The problem was I had an extreme lack of motivation. It was too much to queue up a workout video after a rough day at work. There was really no goal for me except to fight off the so called black dog. Weekends are for sleeping in, house work and playing video games. That is more tempting than making your floor shake while you do jumping jacks.

When Pokemon Go came out with it’s design to get people to get out socialize and explore the world around them many people got something they hadn’t in a long time: exercise. Now I spend my time not just walking to get fit but to satisfy a basic human need of hunting. I hunt for the pokemon that I so desperately want, walk to defend or attack gyms, walk to pokestops to fill up on items and pokeballs. I am also finding places I hadn’t even known existed in my little no name of a town.

This one amazing game is now saving lives each and everyday. In addition to that, it’s allowing parents to play with their children and form a bond. People of all walks life are meeting under pokestops that someone has used a lure on and talking. Facebook has become filled with hunting events, and even bar crawls. Many can say this game or that game has done the same thing, but not really on the level that this game has done. The real question is how far will this game go? Will we see conventions across the states and all over the world? Is there going to be a championship battle streaming on Twitch for some coveted prize? When the hell am I going to find a growlithe? I mean seriously I have been looking everywhere and hatching all the eggs I have just to get that one darn pokemon!

With the cold weather up here in the north, I may as well start shopping for some winter weather exercise outfits because once it gets cold it will be harder to get out there and catch them all.

Jess Johnson

When she is not trying to take over the world, Jess takes time to record video games and write articles.