A Gamer Wife
One of the questions many women get asked (and I’m sure men do as well) is how or where did they meet their spouse. It took me years to get to the point that I felt I was ready for a significant other. By then, online dating was normal, and that’s how I met my husband—on a site called OKCupid.
He lived in Nazareth, PA, about an hour and a half away, but we had too much in common for me to ignore him. I messaged him first, and many months later I asked him to marry me. When you’re in your late thirties, you already know what you want and don’t want in a companion. You also can ignore the little things that might destroy a young relationship, like his constant burping or never putting his dirty clothes in the hamper. What matters is that you enjoy spending time together, and we certainly did. We still do, mostly, even if it’s just me crocheting next to him while he plays a video game.
It's no lie that video games played a huge part in our relationship. When you’re a gamer, you want to be with other gamers. People who share your interests and hobbies. He definitely plays more than I do—my short attention span and need to be active or creative at random draws me away from games. My wide range of interests and hobbies is so vast that I would never expect anyone to be part of all of them. Gardening, writing, business, crafting, sewing, fixing things, politics, and so many more that even I can’t keep track. Gaming is by far my number one hobby, and even that has a vast range, from the different gaming genres to my choice of consoles on which to play.
When I first started dating my husband in the summer of 2015, I didn’t even own a PS4. I was still back in the days of the Xbox 360 simply because I just couldn’t afford a new system. My youngest brother had made the switch from Microsoft to Sony with the PS4, and since we played a lot of Minecraft together, I planned to follow suit. The exclusivity of the upcoming No Man’s Sky sealed the deal: PS4 over Xbox One. My husband already had a PS4 and was quick to show me all of his fancy games. I think in the beginning he was skeptical of my gaming abilities. I definitely didn’t help to end that skepticism when he handed me his controller to play Assassin’s Creed 4: Black Flag on his PS4, a game I absolutely loved. I sucked because he plays without inverted controls, something I never adjusted to from the days of classic gaming. I also hadn’t used a PlayStation controller since the original system, an adjustment that would take me months to make. Needless to say, he still continued to date me.
After a few months, I received a promotion to manager at work. Though the salary wasn’t the greatest, especially compared to the next manager position I would get, it was more money than I had ever made in my life. That is when I finally bought my PS4, sort of as a celebration for myself. With it, I purchased Fallout 4, a game that my husband (then-boyfriend) played a lot and that looked like a fun game. I have no regrets. I did purchase an Xbox One years later during Amazon Prime Days in the summer of 2018, along with Halo: The Master Chief Collection. I rarely play the system, but it is nice to sometimes just play through a few of my favorite Halo missions.
My husband and I do play some of the same games. He has no interest in Mario or Pokémon games, and I have no interest in whatever random online game he and his friends are playing for the month. We have spent a lot of time together online, from No Man’s Sky to Red Dead Redemption 2 to ARK: Survival Evolved. I often play online with him and his friends, of which some seem to be jealous that he has a wife who plays the same games and is actually good. Needless to say, most of his friends grew to like me rather quickly, and who can blame them: I am a very likable person. I don’t go after new players or criticize them for everything they do. I’m just there to enjoy the game, and as long as others aren’t affecting my enjoyment, we’re all having a good time. Once in a while my husband thinks it’s funny to “annoy” me online, and he pays the price, which he learned when he killed my horse in Red Dead Online and I hunted him repeatedly in anger. His friends found it hilarious and decided to take my side in the hunt. Nobody kills my Hades.
It had never occurred to me throughout much of my life that female gamers were a rare occurrence. And I mean actual “gamers”—not those who just play a game now and then. Gamers who know games, are good at them, know the characters and stories, and so on. I knew that there were far fewer of us than males, but to be so rare was just astounding. As I’ve written in previous posts, it isn’t as uncommon today as it was back then, and I am glad for that, but I still am the only wife in the party chat. The only one in the Red Dead Posse. And that is what makes it so special.
Also, my husband did eventually learn to put his dirty clothes in the hamper…most of the time.