Gamers- The Husband and the Wife

For those that aren’t gamers and/or don’t have a significant other who is, you may want to steer clear of this entry. This wasn’t what I wanted to blog about today, but this article pissed me off a bit. And also be warned, I may not be very kind.

This morning Hubby tweeted a link to an article on Twitter about “How to Turn Your Wife into a Gamer”. It is a blog entry from MSXboxWorld.com written by Blake Treleaven. He and I discussed what he thought about it at first, before I even read it and it did not sit well with me then, and it certainly does not sit well with me after reading it. As I said in a tweet about it, it has a FEW good points. And I will touch on those. But as I also stated in that tweet, it has a lot of SHIT in it too.

For those not in the know, a brief run down of myself and Hubby. We are in our early to mid thirties. We have been gamers in one form or another since we were real young. When I was a kid we used to play everything from poker to war to baseball, monopoly, basketball, war games, and we had Pong and an Atari system. My baby brother and I also used to play D&D (the original rule set, not the messed up crap of today). Things weren’t much different for Hubby. When he and I first started dating, he had a PS1, among other gaming consoles. We played the hell out of them. We also played table top RPGs, and he was also into 40k, Blood Bowl. He ran a Palladium RIFTs game for the longest time and I also ran Palladium Fantasy and played in all kinds of other games. Then the XBox came out and console gaming became bigger for us. Most of our electronic gaming before the XBox had been done mainly on the computer. But Microsoft had taken the computer and made it where you didn’t have to upgrade every two seconds and more affordable. Since then we’ve mainly stuck with Microsoft for the console. I did hunt down a PS3 for Hubby’s birthday the one year (the 60 GB one that is FULLY backwards compatible). Our kids even game.

A lot of people comment to Hubby about how lucky he is that he has a wife who is also a gamer. That she GETS it, that I don’t get mad at him for gaming, etc. Well, they change their tune when it’s between 2 and 6 AM and he’s been gaming steadily since about 9 or 10 PM the night before. AND we have to go to HIS parent’s house. They have yet to lose him mid-game, but I’ve not been so kind with the words and the glares. Thankfully that does not happen often. And in all fairness, he’s busted me before with the marathon gaming when other things should have been taken care.

For the most part we are lucky that we are gamers and that we can share this part of our lives together. But it has come at a lot of hard work and compromise. What was that??? COMPROMISE. It’s a word that is not in a lot of people’s vocabularies. And it stretches all along the board of hobbies. Matters not if you are a gamer or not. Another word we’ve used is considerate. Between those two words, it has helped us greatly, and thus you see us arguing and bitching at one another less about something as insignificant as games. Yes, I am a gamer and I just called them insignificant. They are just that because they are not worth loosing somebody you love and loves you back, and the life you have created for one another. REGARDLESS if they are a fellow gamer or not.

Now, the link for the article in question: http://www.msxbox-world.com/xbox360/features/article/465/How-to-Turn-Your-Wife-into-a-Gamer.html If it takes you to a main page instead of straight to the blog entry, just scroll down slightly in the center of the page and you should see the title link leading you there. “How to Turn Your Wife into a Gamer”

Now, I’m going to go through the few good points of the article first. It shouldn’t take too long. I’ll mostly be saying ditto to it all.

Before the author goes into the steps of turning said wife into a gamer, he mentions how even if your wife is already a gamer that there is no shirking real-life responsibilities with her either. Very true. And the same can be said for the wife as well.

The first step I somewhat agree with. Not really the wording, but the basic idea is there. You should be sure that who ever you end up with, that they are someone who is either similar to you or understanding. At the very least doesn’t mind your hobby/lifestyle. Now, if you are part of that class of gamers whose life revolves around games 100% and the only time they see the light of day is when they need to go for a game run (delivery pizza is their food of choice) and still live with mommy and daddy and DON’T have a job and complain night and day about everything, don’t even worry about step 1. You won’t get a chance to make it to that step. EVER.

The second step. The TALK. If it weren’t for the fact it’s advocating communication I’d be more upset. Just remember to treat your significant other with respect and don’t get defensive or argumentative (like he said in the article) and things will be fine. Certainly don’t hide the fact you are a gamer from them while you are in the pursuit stage of the relationship. It’s apart of you. They need to see you for you (as long as you aren’t an arrogant asshole who needs a new one ripped for him).

The last step was ok. Fable isn’t my game of choice  to bring in for a novice, especially for the girly girls, but it’s not a bad choice either, for the reasons he mentioned.

Now, for the bad, shit-laced tripe that needs to be blown away.

The opening. Oh my gods. This guy has no fucking clue does he. He even upset Hubby with how he presented the opening and then went in to bash and blame the poor girlfriend. Now granted, we don’t know the whole story, etc of that scenario. Only enough for people with half a brain to be offended by the author’s total lack of respect for women and his lack of consideration. If you read further into the article, it’s NOT OK for her to turn his game off while he’s playing it, but it’s OK for him to be late and disrespectful to her and her family because it takes away time from his games. Needless to say this does not fly for either Hubby or me. I get the impression from reading this that the author does not have much experience with women. And if he does, then not positive experiences.

Step 3. Who is he kidding???? If she liked Horror movies to begin with, chances are she is a gamer of a sorts. And how many women EVER got so scarred that they had to shriek and bury themselves into their man? I have a 70-something mother who would tear that one a part in a heartbeat. The answer is NOT THAT MANY, and the ones who do it are either genuinely scared or they are ACTING because they want to encourage the guy. Wake up dude. Even in the 50’s it wasn’t like that. Women have been manipulating men for a long time, and for the most part guys are smart enough to realize this and even use it to their advantage. It’s no mega secret either.

Frankly for step three, if you are going to try to snag the non-gamer’s interest, go for a game that may interest them. They like Harry Potter? There are the movie games, but as they are pretty much panned as crap all around, maybe LEGO Harry Potter? The controls are easy, and the gameplay is basic. There are a million and one games out there. About the only thing he got right in this part was the playing it with her. Just skip the whole Horror bullshit and skip straight into what interests her. Trust me. It will be worth it in the end. She may decide she likes it and continue on, or she may decide it’s not for her. Either way, she tried, and it would be nice of you not to push or be an asshole about it.

Step 4 should have been step three, minus the crap games he lists. That and as a HARD CORE GAMER who is a FEMALE, I am sick and tired of the so-called hard-core gamers who bash the casual games. Chances are, the casual games are what got you started, and at the very least, if not for the casual game, those like Bejeweled, you would not have many of the games you have today. And I know of many people who aren’t gamers who spend just as much time playing them as the “hard-core” do. Hell, I love a lot of the puzzle games. Bejeweled, Tetris, Mah Jong. They are awesome and actually help to keep your brain active. Instead of sitting there coming up with a gazillion ways to blow up EVERYBODY in the latest Halo match in as short amount of time as possible, just to piss the other players off.

The key to step four succeeding is allowing the newbie the chance to find out what interests them and then let them explore. Time to cut the apron strings. Again, do not to push or be an asshole about it.

Over all this whole thing sucked. It honestly reeks of stereotypical gamer trying to be cool in front of all of his friends who may have a girlfriend. But he’s missed so much by such a distance if he is in a relationship, then I don’t think it will last long. He never talks about Respect, Consideration or Compromise. Those are three big things there. If you don’t have them in a relationship, no matter what your hobbies, etc are, the relationship is not going to work. And just because she isn’t into games, doesn’t mean the relationship will fail. I know this one guy. He is a gamer. His wife is not. She’s into golf. He isn’t. They have a compromise. When she goes out for her golf games, he does his marathon gaming sessions. This way, they both get what they want. She will normally go out about once a week, sometimes once every two weeks. And she rarely complains when he does game when she is home. Why? He helps around the house, works, and makes time for her, just like she does for him. And that’s just one example.

If things have gotten so bad in your relationship that your wife has just turned off the game while you play it, you should be less worried about the game and more worried about what is wrong with your relationship. And it’s not because she isn’t a gamer. Chances are it stems from you being one that has yet to realize that games are not the end all in life and that you have to show interest in her and her family as well.  In which case it may be time for some counseling and for BOTH parties to do some deep reflection.

Even though Hubby and I are pretty hard-core gamers, they are not our lives. This blog should be a good example of that as I talk about him here as well as myself. And not every entry is about games, nor are they mentioned every entry. He’s in school right now learning how to become a chef. Before that he was a truck driver who had been laid off when the economy tanked. We both love reading and our library is extensive. In fact go to the right of this blog and click on my Good Reads link and see just how big. And I haven’t updated that in ages either. We both love watching movies and TV shows and not always the same ones. He loves football. I’m more of a soccer girl, but just as I will make the effort to watch a game or two with him, he does the same for me. I love gardening and taking care of the kids and animals. I’m also a writer. I’m skinches away from completing two different degrees, one in history and the other in business. We both do our best to be apart of our families and community.

Are we perfect? Hell no. Did we get this way over night? HELL NO. Just ask our family and friends. We’ve been together 13 years, and married ten of those. It has not been easy and it’s been a lot of work. It still isn’t easy, but it’s not as bad. I dare say it’s better.

So that is my .02 on the whole ‘How to Turn Your Wife into a Gamer’. Now to edit and then post this so Hubby can read it :).

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4 thoughts on “Gamers- The Husband and the Wife

  1. Hey Guys, Blake Treleaven here. Was just wandering along on the net and found this little rant. It’s flattering in some ways, and quite humbling in others. As a happily married man who consulted his wife over dozen times in writing of this article, I assure you I never meant to offend any women, of any stripe. I can also assure you that sexism is for dinosaurs and frat boys and I would never partake in it. I can also assure you that your assumptions about my lovelife are very accurate, Justine was my high school sweetheart and my “complaints” at the beginning of the article were all second-hand. I just don’t have a tremendous amount of experience with women.

    I’m not sure why I’m posting this, exactly. You were perfectly fair in your assessment of my piece, I didn’t feel a real need to “defend” myself or anything. I simply wanted you to know that your complaints were heard, I agree with some of them, contend some others. More than anything, thank you for reading.

  2. This is Wayne from msxbox-world.com. While I did not write the article you referred to, I’d still like to congratulate you on an entertaing read. 🙂

  3. Scott Strickland here, Manager of NA Publisher Relations at MSXBOX-WORLD. Long way of saying “PR Guy”.

    Very entertaining read!

    To be fair to Blake, people are very different. When I read his article I found myself nodding in agreement … my spouse has done some of the things he’s mentioned (shriek during a horror game for example). I also had the unfortunate luck of hooking her on Tetris and Bejeweled … had to go through hours upon hours of watching her play it. Not bad games per say …. but torture when wanting to play CoD or Halo.

    Anyways, thanks for the read! It’s interesting to see different perspectives!

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