Everyone knew I was playing. It was me and a small group of "hardcore" close friends who played for RuneScape Gold several more years. Eventually, however the group stopped playing. I continued to play on my own, without anyone knowing.
At this point, we also started to make friends with girls. It was around that time that I discovered Sal's place and joined into order to maintain some sort of social interaction, so it wasn't all bad.
After having quit RS an old friend of mine brought me into WoW that I've been playing on and off for a couple of years now. As with my secret RS days the game isn't something I've ever discussed with my friends. They're not bad people, no matter my way of making them sound. But, they won't remove me from their circle of friends. There would be plenty of laughs.
Although I agree with your comment about it "just being another videogame", we should not forget that there will always be a stigma associated with multiplayer online games, particularly RPGs in the genre of fantasy, than to CoD or Battlefield.
I was blessed to have friends who were able to 2007 RS Items understand my struggles. However, they weren't perfect. I am currently married to a woman who I love and share my life with. She is aware that I play and also plays her f2p account every occasionally.