World of Warcraft is a huge part of my life. I won’t lie.
I’m more than a little addicted and play more than I should
in any given week. I’ve met my share of good friends in the
years I’ve been playing, quite a few of which are real life
couples who enjoy playing together. I’ve watched WoW romances
bloom before my eyes, sometimes quietly and sweetly, and sometimes with
enough drama to make Jerry Springer drool. I’ve listened
quietly while friends told me of their girlfriends/boyfriends leaving
because of the game, and I’ve watched marriages fall to
Personally I’ve always considered myself lucky. My wife has
played the game with me almost from day one and is very understanding
of my addiction. Over the years we have gotten any number of
compliments ranging from “Oh you guys are such a great
couple, you seem so happy.” to “I don’t
know how you make it work especially with a child.”. I can
assure you, that our marriage isn’t perfect. We
aren’t always happy with each other, arguments happen, and
making time for WoW while balancing other aspects of our life is very
difficult. We have also spent extensive time with other couples who
play WoW, and after speaking with them we realized we all do the same
thing to keep our marriage and lives in tact.
A couple who both enjoy playing should make an honest attempt
to take time out of the game. This may sound easy, but it’s
not. My wife and I are both guilty of losing track of time and spending
all day playing. Take time before raids, spend it with each other and
the rest of family.This will obviously leave less farming time, but
trust me, it’s worth missing. Join a guild that will allow
you and your significant other to play together. Playing in different
guilds, even on the same server, can be a very bad idea.
Don’t eat at the computer. Sitting down to dinner together is
a great way to become closer and puts what is really important into
perspective. Do date nights, don’t forget that you picked
your significant other for a reason, enjoy each other’s
company and don’t let WoW dominate the conversation (this
really annoys my wife). Never bring your arguments to the
game. It’s unnecessary and when you begin to play
you may find that your troubles will simply melt away. Be ready to
quit. Yes, that’s right. If playing WoW causes to many
issues, you need to give it up. Never, ever let a game become more
important than those you care about in real life.
For couples with only one person who enjoys playing, it’s
even more complicated as the person who does not play can feel left out
and abandoned, especially if they themselves can not understand the
draw of a video game. There are forum groups and sites set up just for
“WoW Widows” that show the extent of the problem.
I’ve watched a few marriages/relationships break up directly
or indirectly because of a WoW addiction, sometimes at the fault of the
player, but not always. In times past, I’ve even played with
a fellow who’s wife would stand behind him while he raided to
be sure that he didn’t speak with any of the women in the
guild because she was convinced that they were all out to steal her
husband. Needless to say, the marriage didn’t work out.
For couples like this, the rules are basically the same, except perhaps
even more important to follow. Take time out and spend time with your
significant other, and try to talk about other things besides the game.
A person who does not play is really not going to care if your guild
managed to kill Lord Jaraxxus on your first attempt. Once again, make
time for your family, take off for the weekend and go camping, or take
your significant other to that movie he or she has been dying to see.
Do try to make it seem like you want to be there. Driving 90
miles an hour to get back home so you can play again is not a good
idea, nor is checking your watch every 10 minutes. Ask that special
someone from time to time if they would like to make an attempt at
playing. While the answer may probably be
‘no,’ by asking you are letting that person know
that you want to get them involved. While there are many things the WoW
player can do to make their relationship run smoother, it is not
completely up to them. The other person in the relationship has to be
willing to be able to accept the gamers WoW time. If not, then much
misery will ensue.
If you are not yet married, and your girlfriend/boyfriend hates when
you play, and is constantly nagging you, keep in mind that this will
NOT change once you are husband and wife. Am I saying dump your
boyfriend/girlfriend if they hate WoW? No, as long as you can reconcile
yourself with the fact that it will most likely be a long rocky road
ahead that may result in giving up WoW entirely, or coming home from
work to find your clothes out on the lawn. My suggestion would be to
try to find someone who has a love for video games as well, or at least
doesn’t despise them.
Not all relationships are formed outside the game. It only stands to
reason that spending three or more nights a week with the same people
over and over again, that eventually some relationships will bloom.
Especially since flirting is an inevitable part of the game. Everyone
does it, even people in committed relationships. Hardly anyone notices
they do it, and most the time it’s fairly innocent, but
sometimes it can turn into more. Add to that, most people act at least
slightly different, if not completely different, when in game and you
have the recipe for some serious trouble. It’s hotly
debated if these usually long distance relationships can withstand the
test of time and real life problems. I’ve
personally seen a little of both, therefore my opinion on the matter is
these relationships can certainly work, however caution should be taken
before getting involved.