I grew up with two younger brothers (with me being the only girl), so a boy’s territory is nothing new to me. I’m used to it. Actually, I’m quite comfortable with it. So I don’t mind video games. In fact I grew up playing Mario and Sonic the Hedgehog with my brothers. I even had my own GameBoy (impressed yet?).
However, as I grew up and moved on with life, I left that part of my childhood years behind me…until I met Dear Hubby (DH). When we first met, over 10 years ago, I would say DH was a “casual” gamer and only played here and there. It wasn’t an every night deal. But now, I’d say he’s a more serious gamer. Nights for him consist of meeting up with his group of digital friends and playing into the wee hours of the morning, especially on the weekends.
So what has this lifestyle done for our marriage? Well…a lot and at the same time, not much at all!
What It’s Really Like to Be Married to a Gamer
When I married DH, I didn’t know I’d become a “gamer’s wife.” Life then wasn’t like what it is today. This slowly changed over time, and for the most part, I’m fine with that. Gaming definitely has not ruined or damaged our marriage or relationship. In some ways, it has brought us closer to together.
Sure, there are times where I wish we could spend a night together watching movies without getting interrupted with gaming invites, but I let the small things go. You learn to pick your battles, and that’s not something to get upset over. We don’t fight or argue about it (that’s very, very rare for us). Usually, I just let things be because at the end of the day, I just want him to be happy, and if that’s gaming with his online friends, then so be it. They can have him for a few hours, but I have him for a lifetime!
However, there are some downsides to being married to a serious gamer, I won’t lie. It can get frustrating and irritating at times, but it’s what he loves to do, so who am I to stand in his way? He would never stand my way of things I love to do. (And there are nights he lets me watch my Downton Abbey.)
We have mutual respect for each other and a solid understanding of where we both come from. When we need to talk about things, we do. It’s called communication. All couples should practice it because it works! Just be open and honest about things.
Anyhoo, I truly believe in a dichotomic universe, where everything has its opposite. One can’t live or exist without the other, the yin and the yang. So while I will share the downsides of being a gamer’s wife, you must know that there are always upsides as well.
#1 Downside: There have been many nights that I go to bed alone because DH stays up later to play his games, or just falls asleep on the couch downstairs. I also get pretty cold because he’s my personal heater at night.
Upside: I get the whole king-size bed to myself. I get to snuggle with my pups (who take his place when he’s downstairs). And sometimes when it’s an all-nighter, I wake up to donuts or breakfast when he runs out to make a special trip for me (awww).
#2 Downside: When it’s game night, which is almost every night, I lose the TV. If I want to watch a movie or one of my shows, I have to resort to my laptop.
Upside: I usually don’t mind watching movies or TV shows on my laptop because then I can watch my “girlie” shows in peace. DH hates some of the shows I watch, like The Bachelor, so I try not to watch those when he’s around and subject him to that “trash,” as he calls it. To me it’s drama and I love me some drama!
#3 Downside: There have been times when we’re out at dinner or shopping and we have to rush our evening time together because he has to get home to meet up with the the boys to play. Usually we know his schedule ahead of time and they plan a specific time, but other times, he’ll randomly get a text, and then I know our night is over.
Upside: I have the whole evening to myself to do what I want to do. When DH is preoccupied with his games, then I have all the time in the world to work on my hobbies: painting, reading, writing, etc. I’m all about self-care right now and don’t have to worry about trying to fit in time to do my things.
#4 Downside: Sometimes, I get lost in translation. I don’t always get the language and content of the gaming world, so when he’s talking to me about something, my eyes usually glaze over. I just smile and nod to make him feel good 😉
Upside: However, I am learning so much more about the gaming world because DH is so deep into it. Life is like school, it’s always in session, and I love to learn. I may not always be heavily interested in it, but I do like to follow along at times.
#5 Downside: DH has really gotten into following certain YouTube (YT) personalities and I’ve been forced to watch their videos on gaming, if I happen to be downstairs in front of the TV. (I still don’t understand watching other people play video games….B-O-R-I-N-G!)
Upside: I’ve learned to really like some of the “stars” he follows (Boogie 2988, Lamar Wilson, etc.) and enjoy watching their videos when DH streams them to the TV. There are even some nights we forgo the normal TV shows and just watch YT videos together for a couple hours.
#6 Downside: If I’m downstairs in front of the TV when it’s on, I’m forced to watch the PlayStation and XBox conferences. It’s a big deal in our house and he lets me know ahead of time when he needs the TV.
Upside: We have discussed that if DH ever goes to any gaming conferences in the future, I may be able to tag along and attend with him. Then I can experience his world first hand, and also may get to meet some YT “stars,” which would be really cool.
#7 Downside: When DH gets into a lively debate or conversation, the noise level can get pretty loud, and I’m sensitive to loud noises. It’s also really hard to sleep when he’s up later than I am and I have to yell at him to keep it down. (I guess that’s what earplugs are for!)
Upside: I feel like a proud wife 🙂 He knows what he’s talking about and it’s impressive to hear him debate so intelligently because he is so knowledgeable about this gaming world. I also really enjoy seeing him have fun, laugh and have a good time when he’s on with his buddies. When he’s happy, I’m happy!
#8 Downside: When I need DH to do something (like grill dinner) or need to talk to him or ask a question (did he pay the internet bill this month?), there is no such thing as pausing the game anymore. This outrages me the most out of everything! He can’t stop the game, so I have to wait for him to find a good place to stop playing. So annoying!
Upside: I’ve learned to become more independent and detach myself enough to know that I can do things on my own. (He even taught me how to use the grill outside so I don’t always have to rely on him.) He also tests my patience, and patience is slowly becoming one of my virtues.
My True Confessions
Now that I co-exist in this world, have adapted to this new way of life and have been exposed to video games (and all things geek-related), I must confess…
- I do watch as DH plays his games and sometimes follow along the storylines because they are interesting.
- If DH ever got into VR (virtual reality), I would try it out and see what it’s like. I am interested because I’ve never experienced it before.
- I really like some of the background music on some of the games (Halo, you know how to score it!).
- Once in a blue moon, I do play on the Nintendo Wii with DH and enjoy playing Mario Kart 8 and Super Mario World, even though I’m absolutely terrible at it. He beats me 9 times out of 10.
- I do enjoy playing Lego Batman, as that’s my favorite superhero. Again, not very good at it but it’s fun to try.
- There was a period of time when I was addicted to Viva Pinata and sometimes played until 4am on the weekends. So I do get it when a game comes out that just speaks to you!
- I am interested in the Uncharted live-action movie coming out.
- I do enjoy most of the superhero movies and watch them with DH when they come out.
- Even though I am NOT a Stars Wars fan (DH hates this fact and keeps trying to lure me into it…keep dreaming, babe), I have always loved the Ewoks. I grew up watching the Caravan of Courage: An Ewok Adventure and Battle for Endor.
- I think the Funko Pop figures are absolutely adorable! I even have a few myself (DH surprised me with some gifts: Baby Groot and some hilarious Minions)!
- I don’t get excited (or even care) about new technology or gadgets like DH does, but it is a nice perk to get his hand-me-downs.
- And lastly, I wrote this article of my own free will. I was not bribed or coerced into writing anything. Actually, it was my idea!
I may not always understand the gaming world, or even fully “get it,” but I do respect it and truly appreciate it. I never thought my life would be so intertwined with this industry as it is now, but I am definitely enjoying the ride and excited to see what the future holds for us. 🙂