Does gambling harm romantic relationships?

A couple is arguing at home. [Getty Images]

A widely reported study conducted in 2020 by the company Divorce Online discovered a link between separation and the hit video game, Fortnite.

They went through the divorce papers and discovered that at least 200 of them, or about 5%, had the word “Fortnite” cited as the cause of the divorce.

Although there may be other aspects involved, the main problem in this situation is that the spouse of the couple who plays the video game was too preoccupied with the game and neglected their relationship.

“My boyfriend can’t keep his job, he doesn’t cook or clean, he’s just a tramp who spends all day on the sofa and he gets angry when I tell him to look for a job”, Sheilla complained on Twitter.

This is the most common scenario where men are the recipients.

“Sometimes we use that as a scapegoat, they go out with you knowing you’re a gamer, but once she moves in video games suddenly become the problem. In this scenario, I mostly blame the ladies for thinking they will change you once you start living together,” says avid gamer Adam Kurka.

Another study of the Leisure Research Journal found that 75% of wives wanted their husbands to spend less time gambling and more time actively participating in the relationship and that constant gambling usually led to arguments.

“If video game addiction is affecting your relationship, it needs to go. First, you need to sit down and seriously discuss the future. Where you want to be and how to get there. And probably find a hobby that you both love,” says Will Shi, CEO of Lingon Health.

As they say, too much of anything is bad for you, so a couple needs to set some ground rules and know when addiction kicks in.

While it can be hard to dictate a change in your partner’s habits, there are tricks you can apply to make your partner happy and not let addiction be a problem. There’s no magic bullet, but these tips can help.

What to do? Set game time limits together and stick to them.

Make sure you give your partner your full attention and let them know that the game is not your priority. Sticking to a well-laid realistic plan ensures that one accomplishes one’s tasks without straining.

Instead of rejecting your partner, you should opt for dialogue. Listen to their complaints and take them in stride. Be prepared to face the hard truths as you work on this as well.

Most often, complaints arise from a waste of time and ignorance of your partner. As a family man, you need to make sure you give your better half their time and have a good time while you’re at it. Be imaginative and creative on date nights or simply adopt new family rituals.

And to avoid any conflict, you need to involve your partners in your gaming habits. You should invite them into your world by finding games that you can play together.

In return, be prepared to participate in activities that aren’t your favorite as long as your partner enjoys them.

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