Gaming vs. Marriage (what your wife is thinking & not saying)

Just about every gamer that gets married will at one point (or many points) experience “the collision”- gaming life vs. marital life. It takes many men by surprise that something they enjoy so much can make their wives feel neglected to the point of complaining, fighting, and many times divorce. She knew you were a gamer before she married you, so shouldn’t you be able to freely enjoy your hobby (or lifestyle)? Why is she so lonely?

Let me tell you what your wife is thinking and not saying.

She sees so much excitement in your eyes and she wishes that she was the reason, not your new game. It doesn’t matter that it’s virtual, because it’s a very real experience to you and it’s very real to her that something else, besides her, has captured you so intensely. Something else, besides her, is keeping you preoccupied at night while she falls asleep alone, in a bed that is meant to be shared with her husband. 

So you start to realize she’s feeling neglected and you set out to be a super husband- “I’ll spend X amount of time with her today and then tonight I’ll play all night.” But your wife is extremely intuitive when it comes to you. She feels that invisible timer in your head, “clocking in”with her now so you can justify gaming later. You are not fooling herIt’s not about whether you love her in your heart, it’s about whether she feels that and knows it in hers so the clock in, clock out method unfortunately does neither of you any good. 

She wants to be romanced and carried away by you as much today as she did the first day you met. After marriage, many men seem to fall into the “I’ve sealed the deal” trap. They’ve convinced an amazing woman to marry them and their job is done. That is so far from the truth. The pursuit is not over. She wishes you were as passionate about winning her heart as you are about  leveling up, beating that boss, getting that loot or talking to your online friends that you will probably never even meet in real life.

Here’s a secret for all husbands- there are four main things that women fear ever feeling: A woman never wants to feel that you think she is uninteresting, a burden, unattractive, or that you don’t understand her. If you are constantly excited about gaming, distracted, “clocking in” your time with her before you game, and not being proactive about making sure she knows that she is the center of your heart- it is only a matter of time before your woman is in a consistent spiral in her thoughts- convincing herself that all of her fears listed above have come true.Unfortunately, before she has the courage to express her thoughts, you are already probably having issues in your marriage and you don’t know why.

So how do you fix the issue or make it better?

  1. Love your wife. Learn her needs and make sure those come before gaming. If you love games more than your wife, or her needs, that’s a heart issue. Your games aren’t going to cook you dinner, clean your house, or bring babies into this world for you.
  2. Talk to your wife and find a compromise that works for you both based on your needs and hers- for example she may like it if you wait until you’ve cuddled and she’s asleep to play.
  3. Consider figuring out a time that you can play with your buddies that’s scheduled. Kind of like a “guys night.” If it’s planned she might be more understanding.
  4. Don’t neglect taking your wife on dates and wooing her (and not so you can play later but because it’s your joy).
  5. Invite her into your world- knowing what you know about her, see if there are any games she might be interested in trying out and find cool games you would enjoy playing together.

I do understand my husband’s world a lot more now that gaming has become one of my hobbies too but it wasn’t always that way. I’ve been through the spiral and we’ve also come out of it and conquered it, but we are both still learning. If you have any questions or  comments, feel free to chat with me. I would love to hear from you.

Gamer’s Wifey (Steph)

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20 thoughts on “Gaming vs. Marriage (what your wife is thinking & not saying)

    1. I was telling my husband that when I wrote “hobby” in reference to gaming, it felt weird. It’s definitely more of a “lifestyle” for most gamers, rather than a hobby and I’m not sure that wives realize that beforehand. I appreciate your comment a lot. This is something I’ve wanted to write about since I started the blog but I kind of put it off and got preoccupied with other topics. One of my husband’s gamer buddies who is newly married asked for both of our advice today and it reminded me (along with a Google search that brought up 3 million hits for video games and divorce) that this is something that really does need to be talked about. I hope that it helps people gain understanding in their relationships and does help start the process for a healthy balance. Thanks again for reading and sharing your thoughts. On a raw subject like this, it’s great to hear from people!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. TEACH! That’s very well put! If the couples out there can’t find that healthy balance then life itself has far worse plans for their marriage than they thought. Respect, Honesty, Communication and Love leads all… And for the record if the relationship is amiss, it’s a 99.9% chance it’s the guys fault 🙂 ! Sorry fellas but step your game up. Pun intended!

        Liked by 2 people

    1. With 3 million Google hits on “video games and divorce,” I definitely hope anyone that needs it see it, and that it helps! It’s a serious concern and I think a lot of women don’t know how or don’t have the opportunity to articulate the real issues. Thanks for reading and chatting with me!

      Liked by 1 person

  1. My wife and I both game, it’s actually something that brought us together. Even with both of us being gamers, we struggle with managing gaming with our marriage.

    Let me clarify. I have problems with it sometimes. I have a habit of getting too engrossed in games, “needing” to unwind, or ignoring her needs. Luckily we’ve found a way to talk about it without getting into huge fights.

    I read this to her tonight and she agreed wholeheartedly. Thank you for putting this into words. Hopefully this will help others’ relationships.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I am so glad that it helped you both find words for your experience and I appreciate you being willing to share. One thing I didn’t add to this list in the suggestions that I’ve been thinking a lot about is having a video game free day from time to time or on the same day (s) each week. My hubs and I are taking a break from gaming this week and it’s kind of felt like a honeymoon. It’s so nice spending quality time together, playing some board games, and actually going to bed at a descent time. This is such a serious issue in the gaming world and I’m thankful to hear that it’s resonating with readers!

      Liked by 2 people

    1. Maybe you’ll meet someone that takes your breath away and fall in deep mad love, and it will make you change your mind. When that happens it shouldn’t feel like rationing anymore. OR you might end up like the WOW couples that meet through the game and share a deep bond because of gaming. At least you know where you stand for now and I’m sure anyone you date will be aware of what a big part of your life gaming is right now.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Hello there, I just wanted to say that I really like this blog post. I’ve been married for close to four years now and it is the greatest experience in the world, especially since I married my best friend. We knew each other for nine years before slipping on those rings, so we learned how to hang out. After the explosiveness of the honeymoon days, what else would there be to do with each other besides of hanging out. We learned to play video games together. That’s what turned gaming from a guilty pleasure into something I’m now proud of, because I can share the experience with my wife: we can both laugh and cry at great stories, or just chill with something easy. If we want to have friends over for a game (OUR friends), then we both join in. We now have a son and we look forward to sharing the experience with him as well. Where gaming is detrimental to a marriage is, as you pointed out above, where it is a lifestyle rather than a hobby. After marriage, being married is your new lifestyle and definition really.

    Marriage can break down into a lot of do’s and don’t’s (my opinion) and unless there’s a real quality of relationship/friendship/companionship then it isn’t really hard to explain why people “fall out of love” with each other as easily as they first “fell in love”. The intoxication wears off and normality sits in when the dedication of real friendship will be tested. It’s been said “love isn’t something you feel, it’s something you do”. Video games are a part of that for us.

    This was a really cool post to read and I hope that many more bloggers in the future are more candid and honest about how gaming affects their marriage, whether positively or as a detriment. It’s helpful for every married person to consider their interests while putting their spouse first. I said quite a lot on your blog. I apologize. Thank you for your post!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Well, hello! And please don’t ever apologize for sharing and writing, It’s been great hearing from people and having authentic conversations. Love is definitely not a feeling, but an action and unfortunately it’s pretty easy for a lot of married people to forget that, or misunderstand it, and put their own needs first. Gaming can become a pretty unhealthy addiction/lifestyle when it puts all other aspects of REAL life out of balance and there are ways, just as you’ve shared, to enjoy both while keeping true priorities in check. It sounds like you and your wife make a great team and a great team makes a strong marriage. That’s not to say things won’t come up and that everything is perfect, but it just means you have learned to conpromise, look out for eachother, and have a drive to weather the storms together. Thank you for reading and sharing your experience. My hope for this post is that it reaches people who really need the reminder and maybe helps restore a marriage or two. There’s not many good articles on the subject anywhere online and it is a very serious topic. I haven’t written anything new in a little over 2 weeks because I’ve really been enjoying speaking with other bloggers about the content of this post. I don’t care about numbers, it’s just great hearing from people and having some real talk. Let’s keep marriages strong! Congrats on having a little one and still prioritizing your connection with eachother, it can be difficult!

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Thanks for your reply! Oh certainly things aren’t perfect. We’ve just been through a very difficult set of months with a lot of major life changes. We sort of had to discover where our anchors had been laid. I’ve retreated into gaming a couple times recently but my wife is such an amazing woman that she came after me with love and not condemnation. I really wouldn’t be here without her.

        Way to go keeping this great mindset! And what a tremendous desire to help restore marriages. There’s hardly any other purpose more noble and needed than that. Thank you and God bless!

        Liked by 2 people

      2. Sounds like you’ve got a great woman behind you! Make sure you share the love and that she knows how much you appreciate her! Showing her the things you wrone about her might be a good addition! 😉

        Liked by 2 people

  3. Excellent read! This is a great read for any gamer who is married or is in a relationship. My wife is also a gamer, to the point where we were able to have a dream video game wedding together. Gaming is a great way that we bond, but I know that there are more important ways to bond that serve both of us. Regardless of how much we like games, we agree how much more important it is to love each other. Before work or hobbies, love should come first. Thank you very much for this blog and thank you for the continual reminder to love my wife!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank so much for sharing your story and reflections on the post. It is so encouraging to hear that there are plenty of couples out there willing to simply just LOVE each other and love each other enough to understand that love is not just a feeling but it’s action. I’m happy for you that your wife appreciates and enjoys your hobby because I know many people struggle with that in their relationships and also very glad to hear that you still strive to connect with her on a personal level and care for her needs instead of getting over consumed, which can be even easier when it’s a mutual hobby sometimes!

      Liked by 1 person

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