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Drama Mamas: When marital troubles are played out in guild

Drama Mamas Lisa Poisso and Robin Torres are experienced gamers and real-life mamas -- and just as we don't want our precious babies to be the ones kicking and wailing on the floor of the checkout lane next to the candy, neither do we want you to become known as That Guy on your realm.

The above video has nothing to do with this week's letter. Deal.
Hello Ladies,

I am a member of a fairly old casual raiding guild. Coming into Cataclysm, our GM/RL left for a hard core guild and leadership was transferred to other officers. There were some hard feelings and it was a very rough patch but we persevered for the most part. We were even able to recruit as our new raid lead, a returning raid team member who had quit playing WOW for personal reasons.

Unfortunately, those personal reasons involved his wife having multiple affairs, some via Wow. Worse, he told quite a few guildies about it when he left. Even more worse, she was a guild member also and as she has communicated, he "allowed" her to come back.
She was not that great of a player and was carried through numerous raids undergeared and dying repeatedly. No one would say anything because of their relationship. She has however improved greatly but there is not really room for her in our main raid group. She is brought in however when there is room.

She feels slighted however because she has not been promoted because her husband/our RL "biased" the officers against her. They won't promote her because they feel that decision should be left to the RL. She communicates her unhappiness via whispers to quite a few guildies. Besides running down the officers, she is also repeatedly running her husband down and describing how much he berates her about her playing and how unhappy she is in the guild.

Our RL has created alt runs for her and even changed raid days to include her even at the cost of aggravating the rest of the raid group. But then there are times that he "pokes" fun at her in chat in a way that is so passive aggressive that we all cringe. Would prefer to not hear any of this but there are just too may whispers going on.

Is there a solution to ending this drama? How do you even begin?

Signed,

Drama Bombed

Drama Mama Robin ImageDrama Mama Robin: Gah! What a mess. I have so many questions that I feel are important to this situation. Is your raid leader also your guild master? If not, where is your GM in all of this? Are you an officer and therefore able to participate in a solution along with the rest of the leadership? You indicate that you are just a member, so you may not be able to do anything to solve this. Let's pretend the RL is not the GM for a moment and that I can speak to him directly. Pretending is fun!

Dear GM,

You have a huge drama bomb on your hands and the RL seems to be using his position to do whatever he wants. Adjusting the schedule to accommodate the wife he disrespects in public is a double no-no. The regular raiders should be respected and the marital drama needs to stay out of game. Have a talk with your RL and tell him he needs to run all schedule changes by you and the officers. Also, ask him very nicely to please keep any marital issues out of the game, as the other members are feeling uncomfortable. The Whispering Wife needs to be asked to direct her issues with her husband to her husband or at least keep it out of guild.

Hopefully they are unaware just how much discomfort and drama they are causing and will adjust their behavior accordingly. If they don't, start shopping for a new RL. Your guildies aren't having fun and this is what the game is about. Other people can do the job without the drama -- probably within your current raid team. Find one and give him or her the job.
Alright, now let's pretend I can speak to the raid leader directly.

Hey RL,

Take a break from WoW and get some counseling with your wife. Come back when you can handle keeping your personal problems out of the game. If your relationship is important enough for you to keep it going, this is obviously the correct choice. Your guildies will understand your leave of absence and will probably be relieved. And -- sorry to burst your bubble -- but they can live without your raid leading skills. Someone is sure to step up to the plate.

That's enough pretending. Drama Bombed, I don't think there is anything you can do as a member to fix this. You can talk to your GM and express your issues, but I doubt the GM will do anything about it since he hasn't done anything already. If the GM is your RL, ugh. Then I think your only option is talking to your favorite officer and asking advice.

I think you need to decide if it's worth staying in this guild and putting up with the marital drama or if you would prefer to start fresh somewhere else. Either solution is unpleasant to you, I'm sure. /sigh

Drama Mama Lisa ImageDrama Mama Lisa: Robin hit the nail on the head -- it's all about being direct. The entire situation here is a nest of whispering, of implications, of passive-aggressive nitpicking and tiptoeing around feelings.

That must all stop.

Laying down the limits is painfully awkward, yes, but let me assure you that the immediate, blessed relief is so, so worth it. Keys to your win: Be utterly frank, straightforward, and matter-of-fact. Don't try to dance around the real problem or sugarcoat anything -- just lay out your cards. This situation is killing the fun, and killing the fun is killing the guild. If you're a general guild member at large, bring the matter to an officer or the GM in that manner. If you're an officer, take it up with the others on the leadership team in that manner.

No more drama. No more whispered consultations. No tiptoeing. And if you carry the truth forward in a calm, rational manner to no effective result, then you're left with deciding whether the fun factor of the group outweighs the drama factor.

Good luck!

Dodge the drama and become that player everyone wants in their group with a little help and insight from the Drama Mamas. Play nice ... and when in doubt, ask the Drama Mamas at robin@wowinsider.com. Read Robin's section of this post on how to get your letter answered and please remember that we cannot answer privately.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Drama Mamas

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