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5-14-2010 @ 9:47AM
"...often we are just trying to be the voice of responsibility in the face of a spouse who's behaving more like a carefree teen."WHY MUST YOU ALWAYS KILL MY FUN?!?Er... (cough) I mean...Congrats on another well-written response to another relationship question. It's often so easy to skirt around the actual issues in a relationship rather than deal directly with them. Thanks for another reminder to evaluate our priorities and take a hard look at what's going on in our relationships with our spouses/significant others.I would encourage AFK (and others in his situation) to address a situation like this in a calm but direct manner (maybe over some hot chocolate.) If you're really not playing a game at home at all because of your wife, maybe it's time to discuss setting some boundaries to give yourself needed self-time. Propose what seems to be a reasonable amount of time for you. For me, that means 6 dedicated hours of raid time per week. When I first proposed this to my wife, her immediate response was, "but you play a lot already!" I explained to her that if I could be assured of two 3-hour raid nights per week as my self-time, I would prioritize spending time with her above my other play time. Now, if I'm not raiding and she wants to spend time together, I wrap up what I'm doing and join her. Meanwhile, she has her own self-time while I raid to catch up on her reading or enjoy some of her hobbies without worrying that she's neglecting me. And thanks to my ability to be a solid raid attendee, I was able to be in on our guild-first Arthas kill (as well as a lot of other firsts). Having scheduled self-time can be beneficial to both of you!If your wife is unwilling to let you have even a few hours a week, you might have some deeper-seated issues. Now, that being said, if you've got 5 kids at home and she doesn't let you play because she wants your help so she can get a moment of peace, that's different. But, if she truly is "making up excuses to keep (you) from playing," you might want to assess why that is. Maybe you could even ask her directly?Whatever you do, if you discuss this with your wife, be willing to look at yourself honestly. Be willing to admit you're wrong when you are, and be ready to be very gracious and understanding of your wife's point of view. If she just wants to spend more time with you, take it as a compliment, and try to work out a compromise. There is nothing wrong with setting some boundaries to afford you a small portion of your time at home to pursue your hobbies. Finally, I would highly suggest that you read the related Drama Mamas post linked in the article-it really is quite well done.
5-14-2010 @ 11:01AM
Ugh, I wish my wife would let me raid. She really hates it that i would spend 3 hours uninterrupted time on the game in a scheduled manner. I used to be a hardcore raider and it really took its toll on our relationship, but nowadays I play 30 min to an hour in the morning before work, and an hour or maybe two max in the evening. Enough for a heroic or a weekly, but that's mostly it. I try to PUG when I can since my schedule is unpredictable. Scheduled raids also take a toll on the social life; "i cant do activity X because I need to play a computer game" is a weak excuse to your RL friends IMO. But anyway yeah i really miss being in a progression guild. It is what it is. I cherish my wife far more than a game.
5-14-2010 @ 11:14AM
Well, there's a balance to be found even in scheduled play time. If I want to do something else, I decline my raid invite on the calendar, and we go to "RL" stuff instead (Tuesday was Iron Man 2 night with my wife and some friends--well worth missing the raid.) However, since that was "my night," my wife let it be my call as to whether or not we went to the movie (as if there was any question.)I should probably point out that I'm also a member of a friends and family guild, so we're all very understanding of things like this. If I were in a "normal" guild, I would probably think twice about canceling a raid slot less than a day in advance out of respect for my guild mates, but still--RL comes before WoW; having scheduled time just makes it easier to be intentional about how I use my leisure time without making the Mrs. feel ignored.
5-14-2010 @ 1:43PM
@rob... you wish your wife would LET you? This and the carefree teen comment in the column annoy the heck out of me - both people in a marriage are adults and should talk to one another. If you don't do things because your wife won't 'let' you you need to grow up, grow a pair and talk to her. You each should be able to do things without the other person giving permission. You each should *also* be adult enough not to let those things become so consuming that they hurt your marriage. It's called being a resonable adult. That's why the 'carefree teen' comment above had me glare at my laptop - Mamas, you're NOT OUR MOTHERS. It's belittling to act like your opinion is the adult one and his is immature and all to often that dynamic is used to do precisely what the LW describes - make the guy's life hell - "Playing games is for carefree teens! Grow UP!"AS for whether these 2 should staty together, who knows? My take is that, if they can't talk about something like this, they're headed for the rocks. It might be that she's a control freak, it might be that he wants to play 5 nights a week and neglects his marriage - we can't know, so we can't say what they should do except for this - quit acting like 14 year olds and TALK.
5-14-2010 @ 1:51PM
@Clevinscarefree teens = quit acting like 14 year oldsExactly.
5-14-2010 @ 2:14PM
@Robin - I think we're talking about different things unless I misinterpreted your post. You say "But often we are just trying to be the voice of responsibility in the face of a spouse who's behaving more like a carefree teen." which implies that wives are somehow inherently more responsible - and that's what I find demeaning unless you'd grant the reverse too (that "often [husbands] are just trying to be the voice of responsibility in the face of a spouse who's behaving more like a carefree teen.") My point was that BOTH people in the LW's marriage are acting immature - he by letting his wife dictate what he can do and sneaking behind her back and she by trying to forbid him to do something he enjoys. They both need to talk. This need is so blindingly obvious that many of the comments here point it out and, frankly, if they are so immature or relationship challenged that they can't figure this out, I have little hope for them as a couple or in later relationships. Being able to talk about stuff like this is pretty basic to any long term relationship.
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