#1 Posted by Lord_Xp (602 posts) -

I have been playing video games for as long as I could remember. Although, I haven't had many girlfriends and when I did they never lasted very long for me. No, we didn't split up because of my video game hobby. For the first time though I'm in a very long lasting relationship (2 years) and my girlfriend said something to me that made me mad. "You're 21 and you're still obsessed with video games." After thinking about it, a lot of people I know have families who are twice my age and still play video games. I always felt that I even out my video game play time with my girlfriend quality time. Sure I don't hang out with her too late because I want to play my brand new game. I also ditch my online friends to go hang out with her pretty often. I'm not looking for advice or anything on how should I deal with her.

My question is how do you guys make your relationships work while having a family, girlfriend and/or wife? Or has relationships failed over video games? Share stories if you feel like it!

To not start rants, my girlfriend ended up apologizing for what she said to me.

#2 Posted by awesomeusername (4218 posts) -

My last girlfriend played games, mostly COD & GTA. But she was annoyed that I played lots of video games. I think we gamers have an addiction. It's not healthy.

#3 Edited by Oscar__Explosion (2363 posts) -

@lord_xp: My last (and only relationship of 3 years) the girl had a major problem with me playing video games. Mainly because of the content (she is a religious nut) it was one of the many reasons I had to break it off with her. The thing that really bummed me out is at the start of the relationship she was totally cool with me being into games (hell we finished Contra together [konami code enabled of course :P]) but then I don't know what happened. Long story short I couldn't make it work out with her and it was a huge bummer.

#4 Posted by laserguy (446 posts) -

Well, The last of us will possibly hurt your relationship. My girlfriend of six years doesnt like games much, she did sit with me to play Papo & Yo. She gets annoyed when i play to much and she hates that I spend so much money. It is an addiction. Im forty and love a good game.

#5 Posted by EarlessShrimp (1663 posts) -

I think it honestly depends on the person. My fiance is totally understanding that my hobby is video-games, just like her's is reading/cooking and stuff. I mean she states that it would be ridiculous for someone to belittle another for liking a certain hobby, so why should she? I mean, when we do the kid thing, I'm gonna have to curtail the video games. But, as you've said there are families that make the whole video-game thing work. An example from my life currently: I live with her at the moment and she loooooves to sleep in, in the mornings. I'm usually up by 7 in the morning so that gives me 3 unfettered hours of video games on the weekends. We ususally work different hours during the week so that's more time. Other than that I'm usually spending time with her. Occasionally she'll want me to play something like fatal frame for her because she sucks at games but loves the stories. So I mean, it's all about being accommodating and making compromises and all that fun stuff adults do.

#6 Edited by medacris (666 posts) -

Date someone who's already a gamer, or find something that the two of you can play together. I've always been a fan of the idea that there is at least one game out there for everyone.

Although to be fair, two people being gamers doesn't always guarantee they'll have a lot in common, or that they'll even like the same games. But I think a lot of us have realized this through our previous interactions with other gamers, romantic or otherwise.

#7 Posted by shinjin977 (787 posts) -

Relationship and love needs compromise. This is a true story.

I know a restaurant owner who have been married for 40 years and they constantly fight. So, I ask them "Why are you guys still together? I have never seen you guys not yelling at each other." The old man show me the brightest smile I have ever seen on him, he said "I sing her to sleep every night. It is the only way she can sleep without sleeping pills and her cooking is the only thing I have eaten in 40 years."

Turned out in their youth the old woman was an insomniac and her husband singing "cured" her and the old man was/is an extremely picky eater. That was all that held them together and it was enough for them. Even though they hated everything about each other, those two things were enough for them to spend their lives together.

If the only thing your girlfriend have a problem with is one of your hobby, I don't think it is such a serious issue.

(excuse my english)

#8 Posted by selfconfessedcynic (2566 posts) -

@shinjin977 said:

Relationship and love needs compromise. This is a true story.

I know a restaurant owner who have been married for 40 years and they constantly fight. So, I ask them "Why are you guys still together? I have never seen you guys not yelling at each other." The old man show me the brightest smile I have ever seen on him, he said "I sing her to sleep every night. It is the only way she can sleep without sleeping pills and her cooking is the only thing I have eaten in 40 years."

Turned out in their youth the old woman was an insomniac and her husband singing "cured" her and the old man was/is an extremely picky eater. That was all that held them together and it was enough for them. Even though they hated everything about each other, those two things were enough for them to spend their lives together.

If the only thing your girlfriend have a problem with is one of your hobby, I don't think it is such a serious issue.

(excuse my english)

I wish there was a vote-up / thumbs up / +1 feature on GB because I love the shit out of your post shinjin977!

Also, I think your english is pretty good!

#9 Posted by Lord_Xp (602 posts) -

@earlessshrimp: Story of my life. When she is working, I'm gaming. We don't live together yet, but I think she'll get used to it sooner or later. She'll have to honestly.

@medacris: I'm always seeing if there is a game that her and I could play together. I think what she would like is something simple like Mario

@shinjin977: Damn, that's a touching story. I won't let the one thing that we disagree about bring us down. She loves watching cooking shows and I watch every painful minute of them just to make her happy.

#10 Posted by Video_Game_King (36272 posts) -

I'm not sure my solution would be of much help. Not many people are kings constantly faced with an existential identity crisis.

#11 Posted by EarlessShrimp (1663 posts) -

@video_game_king: Well as soon as you find your queen... You'll be all set. I'll gladly be part of your legion of video gamer army things.

#12 Edited by HelicopterSpy (145 posts) -

I'll share my experience as someone who plays a lot of games, has been with my girlfriend for 5 years (!) and has a boring job that gives me way too much time to think about such things. My girlfriend has little to no interest in video games. I've shown her some things that she's liked (Proteus and Portal stick out) but she has no interest in playing them herself.

Most people don't realize that games will actually enrich your life, not totally destroy it. No one looks down on the movie buff or the music nerd even though it's essentially the same thing. Try explaining to her why video games connect with you. They're a way to connect with your friends, be a part of a story (that sounds lame, but whatever) or just a way to enjoy a good stiff challenge. When you play a game, you get better at it, right? That's your brain working, usually without you even thinking about it, to break down the systems of a game. Think that story beat was totally bunk? That, again, is your brain breaking it down. Playing games gives you a lot to think about and thinking is always good for you.

I'm not saying you have to get all weird and heady like I just did, but if you explain why you spend so much time playing games, it should help her understand and hopefully she'll realize that you can be a well rounded person and still have time to kick the shit out of strangers in Mortal Kombat.

#13 Posted by Video_Game_King (36272 posts) -

@earlessshrimp:

I am already with a Queen. That's why my advice isn't applicable: because you don't get a lot of chances to unite nations and enter into political marriages.

#14 Posted by Turkalurch (198 posts) -

I'm lucky to have a wife that understands how much i enjoy video games. She even plays some herself (Recently it was Bioshock Infinite, which she still needs to finish, grr.) and likes to watch me play every once in a while too (This last week it's been The Last of Us). But I don't let the games take control of my life. I have in the past and it's a pretty crappy downward spiral. I still get to play the games I want when I want and have the time, but she is my first priority over anything else. I think it's important to understand that games are great and all, but they aren't something you should choose over real people. It's easy to say, but for some people, not so easy to do. I hope that doesn't take this into a different direction than intended.

#15 Edited by Tireyo (6446 posts) -

@earlessshrimp:

I am already with a Queen. That's why my advice isn't applicable: because you don't get a lot of chances to unite nations and enter into political marriages.

I thought you reproduced by budding, meaning that you are your own queen. =-|

#16 Edited by Video_Game_King (36272 posts) -

@tireyo643:

You know nothing of the Lunarian people.

#17 Edited by Lord_Xp (602 posts) -

@helicopterspy: I have explained to her that video games are an escape for me. It helps me get my anger, sadness, and rejuvenates my happiness from bad work days to shitty family moments. It's taking her a while to grasp the concept, because I'm very different from all the other guys she's dated in the past.

#18 Posted by Tireyo (6446 posts) -

@tireyo643:

You know nothing of the Lunarian people.

Then where is your queen, and why do we never see her?

#19 Posted by SmilingPig (1340 posts) -

I use to play Nancy Drew games with my ex just to spend time with her and she really appreciated the attention until she dumped me in the worst kind of way. One day you’re solving dumb ass puzzles designed so that retarded kids can feel good about themselves when they stumble blindly on the solution and the other day you’re polishing your turtle alone in the dark.

My point is; life is unfair and there is nothing you can do about it.

On a brighter note, my turtle is really shiny now.

#20 Posted by ALJ (10 posts) -

My girlfriend of over a year was indifferent that I played so much, but it did get in the way after the first two or so months. After that she took it upon herself to learn. So I taught her the basics on most games and now whenever we get the chance, we play COD together or I'll watch her play through Skyrim/Fallout and vice versa. It's an AMAZING feeling to see your girl get 20+ killstreak in a game of TDM or watch as she defeats Alduin on Master difficulty. It's a special kind of relationship that you just can't beat. If anything, gaming has brought us closer!

#21 Posted by Video_Game_King (36272 posts) -
#22 Posted by TheHumanDove (2523 posts) -

One time a girl was shocked that I played video games, and I DROPPED DAT BITCH. ITS 2013 HOE, ITS AN ACCEPTABLE THING NOWDAYS.

Beat a couple games. Bought some big league bubble gum chew. Never looked back.

#23 Posted by Undeadpool (4960 posts) -

@lord_xp: Currently in a relationship that I've converted her, to some extent, to videogames, but she was already open to the idea as long as they didn't come first (she'd had a couple of bad experiences in the past). So that's part of it: it helps to share the experience with the person, and if they're not open to it, and they mean that much to you, then frankly it's probably not going to work long-term.

But yeah, playing all five episodes of The Walking Dead together is some of the most fun we've had as a couple, so it's definitely worth it.

#24 Edited by uniform (1836 posts) -

I'm always fascinated reading online message boards with these cases because they're so different than what I experience in my life. The majority of those responding have a partner that compromises or is also into the hobby. I've never been in a situation where video games were not one of many sacrifices I would have to make to sustain a relationship. I don't know where you people find these partners, because in my life they might as well be unicorns. I've also heard the "You're [insert age] and you're still playing video games." In my experiences it was never solely video games that made a relationship fail, yet video games would compound with other "problems" I wasn't prepared to "grow up" and leave behind. That's just me. I won't speak for the handful of friends I've miraculously maintained since high school that mysteriously dropped the hobby before their marriages.

Some of you are lucky indeed.

#25 Posted by Tireyo (6446 posts) -

@video_game_king: Okey Dokey. Lunarians must be similar to humans in that opposites attract. Too bad I'm not studying the Lunarians though. I don't think you would probably allow that though considering that you would want to kill my kind by the time we land on the moon, even though we are a very peaceful kind and wouldn't really cause any trouble. We try to adapt to the new lifestyle in the best way we can, like me and these humans.

#26 Edited by Lord_Xp (602 posts) -

@undeadpool: My way of slowly introducing her to video games is by buying a video game t-shirt for her xD

#27 Posted by Video_Game_King (36272 posts) -

@tireyo643:

You mistake me for an Earthling, good sir. Nobody here would kill you. There's not even a standing military. No need for it since the early 40s. But given our isolationist policies, we'd send you on your merry little way.

#28 Posted by l4wd0g (1987 posts) -

I have found that it is OK to do things apart from one another. Just make sure your SO is your priority.

#29 Posted by bushpusherr (809 posts) -

All of my girlfriends in the past have been totally accepting of my enjoyment of video games, but none of them have ever really shared the hobby or enthusiasm, and either weren't capable or interested in playing games themselves.

While certainly not necessary or a deal breaker, I'd really like to find someone who (among other things) could share this interest with me.

#30 Edited by Tireyo (6446 posts) -

@video_game_king: I was actually welcomed by the earthlings, but I do believe it's for selfish purposes. =-| They really don't know what they're doing after all. Very understandable on the laws and policies. It's similar to how the laws are on my home planet.

I think we better leave these earthlings alone and let them continue their conversation. It's not often that I talk with someone who isn't a human, and I just got a little too excited.

#31 Posted by CornBREDX (5627 posts) -

A relationship is 50/50. You should actively take interest in things she likes (whatever that may be, even as simple as TV shows you may normally think are terrible that she likes to watch) and she should do the same for you. No matter what else, this seems to be key. The relationship wont last otherwise.

Some old dogs say that its about spending as little time together as possible, but while that's a funny joke I think it's more about finding common ground. You should be best friends really.

I have never had a problem with my video game playing habits and girl friends, all mine ended poorly for other reasons.

#32 Posted by ninjalegend (449 posts) -

Oh, this is an easy one. Some of these stereotypes of gamers can be true. Even though there are those that fit the mold, there are even more gamers that do not. I for one find that having a career, keeping myself out of poverty, and having an ability to communicate whether or not Metriod is involved, negate any criticism about my gaming habits as I never hear about it from my girlfriend. As long as you are taking care of the stuff in you're life and you make the moments you are together as memorable as you can, there won't be an issue.

#33 Edited by pyromagnestir (4327 posts) -

It bums me out that some people still associate games with toys, and not with movies, books, tv shows, or things of that ilk, which are socially acceptable for a "grown up" to partake in.

Though, sure, some games are very much toys. Although some of the more toylike games have been the most popular games of their time. Wii Sports. Rock Band. I'd even say games like Madden and FIFA are fairly toyish.

Besides, toys kick ass! And it's not like adults don't have their own versions of toys, even not counting games. Cars aren't toys? To some people, they are. And various other things.

It is perhaps quite apparent that I've contemplated this quite a bit, over the years.

That's really the only aspect of this I can speak to here, as I've never had a relationship that lasted all that long. And video games weren't the cause, I was.

#34 Posted by Video_Game_King (36272 posts) -

It bums me out that some people still associate games with toys, and not with movies, books, tv shows, or things of that ilk, which are socially acceptable for a "grown up" to partake in.

It is perhaps quite apparent that I've contemplated this quite a bit, over the years.

As have I. (Can't decide on what music needs to go here, so how about both?) Hell, I can feel myself slowly abandoning the notion of games as mere engines of fun, seeing and evaluating the messages they hope to deliver.

#35 Edited by Raven10 (1850 posts) -

Well first off, make sure she realizes she is more important to you than a game. If she isn't then maybe you should reconsider dating her. Everyone has a hobby. As long as you put your relationship first, she shouldn't judge you for how you spend your free time. People watch reality TV for hours every day. There is no way that is better for your brain than games. I guess in the end, the fact of the matter is that you need to be responsible. If games are getting in the way of work/school then you probably want to cut back. But in your free time do what you want as long as you put aside time for your girl.

#36 Edited by Lydian_Sel (2488 posts) -

My partner is very supportive and thinks it's cool that I am passionate about games. We live together and she can see that I still work very hard and I always put her first, games aren't a crutch that I lean on and I'm not skirting any responsibilities just to keep playing, she is able to relate my love for the games industry with deep loves of her own. We are maybe a little biased because I've studied game development and I'm looking for jobs in the industry, so she knows how seriously I take it and she completely understands that video games are a part of who I am. In fact I would go as far to say that she has nurtured and always encouraged me to pursue my dreams and loves, she's even coming with me to PAXAUS this year!

Video games have never ended nor soured a relationship for me. In the past I've been with people who just didn't understand or where perhaps off-put by how passionate I was about the Industry and those relationships all dissolved for various reasons. Sadly you will develop relationships with people in the future, both romantic and social, who simply don't get it and feel gaming is just for phones and facebook, or that games games should be left in adolescence. In my experience it's usually not worth it to invest loads of time and effort into trying to bring them around or give them a glimpse of your perspective, at best they get used to it or block it out but rarely do they get on-board with it. In the end, if games are that big a part of you, it's not going to feel right to be with somebody who doesn't acknowledge it and support it. When you try to keep something you strongly desire bottled up inside it just finds other weird ways to burst out.

#37 Edited by Tearhead (2179 posts) -

She has to understand that videogames are a big part of your life, and she has to learn to respect that. Try to show her how much they mean to you, and why they aren't just for kids.

My girlfriend doesn't have a problem with me playing videogames, only with me overdoing it, which admittedly, I do from time to time. While I've introduced her to some games she really enjoyed (PvZ, The Walking Dead, Botanicula, etc.) she doesn't care about them nearly as much as I do. So when I get REALLY excited for a new release, or play a game all day and into the early morning, she doesn't really understand why I would do that, but she knows I love videogames so she gives me the freedom to enjoy them.

#38 Posted by Rick_Fingers (523 posts) -

My wife and I are both gamers, which definitely helps, but I'm definitely more into it than she is (especially these days, though we've both cut back as we got older).

As others have said, it's about compromise. She acknowledges that sometimes I'm going to want to sit on the PC or the 360 and play a game she has no interest in, and I do the same for her.

I also understand that the days of playing CS for 8 hours straight ended the moment I got into a serious relationship, and that sometimes I'm going to have a hankering to play Mortal Kombat but she'll want to watch a movie.

It comes down to respecting your time together while also acknowledging that you're going to want some me time. One of the only benefits to her being a shift worker is that me time is not in short supply for either of us, so it's pretty rare when together that we split off and do our own thing.

Instead we'll play something like Gears or Halo splitscreen, or we will play a single player game like Tomb Raider together.

#39 Edited by DriveupLife (918 posts) -

I prefer not mixing girls and games. The girls I like don't play videogames, so I keep it to myself until we're comfortable with each other. After that point it isn't a big deal.

#40 Posted by Reisz (1517 posts) -

Man I wish I had some poignant advice or stories but I met my wife playing WoW. So, kind of never been an issue. . . The girlfriends I had before I got married were all kind of artsy: a dancer, a painter, a bookworm. That sort of thing, so I've never had to separate games and relationships.

I would say this to anyone reading though. If you're ever in a relationship where your partner wants you to give up your (healthy) game time completely or refuses to meet you half way it's not a healthy relationship. Video games are like any hobby, if you love it than anyone who cares about you aught to be happy. If someone is willing to go that far over something you love, you can't trust them to be there for you when you really need them.

#41 Edited by f00 (49 posts) -

Me and my girlfriend of about 2 years now, play games together all the time, I got her really into League of Legends, and we play together all the time, as well as all kinds of games now. I got her into games and she got me into art.

#42 Edited by ShockD (2410 posts) -

Most girls nowadays accept video games as an usual hobby for both men and women. Never has a girl had a problem with me doing that. Me and my ex used to play quite some L4D2 together and in most cases she proposed it.

It's really not a big deal today. It's the same as being into football (although I'd bet football fans are more annoying than gamers).