Q&A: Helping my husband’s gaming addiction


My husband is a compulsive and addicted video gamer. It seems all he does is go to work and then come home and play video games. I wish it was one of our three children with this problem. At least then I’d know I have options. But with my husband, I feel helpless. Is there anything I can do?

Answer: We can certainly understand your frustration, especially when you see no end in sight. But there are some things you can do.

First, we’re assuming your husband knows how you feel in a general sense. He’s probably seen you roll your eyes or heard you tell a friend/family member how disappointed you are. But have you ever had a respectful heart-to-heart conversation with him about this? We’re not talking about a, “You’ve got to quit all this video gaming; it’s driving me crazy!” zinger. We’re talking about a private dialogue when you say something like this: “Honey, I love you very much. In all of our years of marriage that hasn’t changed. What has changed is the time we used to talk about life and our shared interests together. I feel that on your priority list, I’ve dropped in importance, even below your gaming. That’s not what I signed up for. It’s not what you signed up for. Tell me, how can we change this?”

In addition, be ready to help him with ideas that will improve the situation. Do you feel you need a weekly date night, or an after-dinner walk together? How much video gaming are you comfortable with? Those thoughts can help guide the conversation.

If you have this discussion and feel you’re not getting anywhere, we’d suggest the two of you meet with a counsellor. Feel free to call our Family Support Services at 03-3310 0792 or write to support@family.org.my.

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