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How to stop your boyfriend or husband from playing video games: Dealing with his gaming addiction

Updated on October 10, 2012
Get a grip over your boyfriend or husbands gaming habits before they ruin your relationship.
Get a grip over your boyfriend or husbands gaming habits before they ruin your relationship. | Source

How to stop your husband from playing video games on his Xbox or Playstation and ignoring everything else? Annoyed at your boyfriend for spending hours leveling up in World of Warcraft or Age of Conan? Think that your partner is addicted to video games and sacrifices spending time with you? Irritated because your boyfriend prefers playing computer games over going out with you all the time? Solve all these problems, fix your boyfriend's or husband's gaming habits and get your relationship back in the groove with these tips.

1) Suggest that you both do something that he likes

If you keep nagging your boyfriend to stop playing video games so that the both of you can go out and do the things that you have always wanted to do, that could be a wrong move. Rather, try luring him away from the computer by suggesting stuff that he likes to do – whether it is going for a long drive, watching a basketball game, etc.

Your boyfriend or husband may happily agree to get out of the house for the sake of an activity that he thinks is a fun thing to do. Use this as a trigger just to get him off the couch and once you are out the door, you can start having some real fun.

2) Offer to take him out and you can drive

Whether it is Xbox, Play Station, Wii or a PC based game, your man could be spending hour after hour sitting in front of the TV or computer monitor aimlessly shooting down aliens or driving rally cars. Resultantly, video games could be turning your guy into a couch potato.

If you think that your partner has turned into a lazy bum who will never take the initiative to take you out, take the first step and ask him if you both can go out and you can drive. The thought of sitting in the passenger seat and relaxing while you manage your way through the traffic may get him to say yes.

3) Plan an unusual date

To get your partner to stop playing video games, try planning an unusual date that catches him off guard. Use your creativity and imagination to come up with an unusual date idea that he finds too unique to resist.

Make sure that your plans align with your guy's comfort zone so that he willingly sacrifices his gaming time to go out with you and do something different for a change.

4) Throw a tantrum when he picks up the video game controller

Throw a tantrum and a girly outburst the very moment your guy picks up the video game controller. Don't allow him to even start or log into his favorite online role playing game simply because 5 minutes will turn into 15 and by the time you realize, he is lazily leveling up for hours together.

As soon as he hits the start button on the computer, laptop, tablet or video game console, frown and hold nothing back in showing your anger, frustration and displeasure. Because once the game begins, he may find hundreds of excuses and demand just a little bit of time to finish a level, upgrade an item or down a few enemies.

5) Ignore him and sulk when he is not playing video games

To make him guy feel the same way you feel when he acts like a total idiot by ignoring you for his video games, do the same by ignoring your guy when he is not playing.

Don't look towards him when he calls you, say no when he asks you to help with something and do everything that he does when his undivided attention is focused into gaming.

Put on your best sulky face and make him plead for you to turn into a happy camper. To avoid this daunting exercise of making up to you, he may cut back on his gaming and spend more time with you.

6) Keep a weekly log of the number of hours he plays

To get your boyfriend or husband to stop playing video games, you need to make him realize the amount of time he puts into his gaming. He may not even know that he is spending in upwards of 2 hours every day tapping away on the keyboard or the controller.

Secretly keep a log of the time your guy spends playing games every day. At the end of a few weeks, show your log to him and total up the hours. Even he may be left wide eyed when you show him the number of hours he has spent in front of the computer or TV screen.

7) Set a time limit for gaming

Just like how you wouldn't like it if your boyfriend or husband became overtly controlling and asked you to stop doing the things that you love doing, he may also see your attempts as those of an annoying girlfriend or wife.

To strike a balance between him being able to continue playing video games along with taking time out for the relationship, set a time limit. Let him know how his gaming habits are hurting your life as a couple and ask him to limit the amount of time he spends gaming.

Whether it is 30 minutes or an hour, make sure that he sticks to the time limit.

8) Bring food for a snack break

Drag your man away from the computer by tempting him with his favorite treat – weather it is a box of wings from KFC or your homemade pasta. But remember that the key to using food to curb his gaming is to keep the food away from him so that he needs to physically leave his comfortable chair or couch.

Don't give into his requests of bringing the food to where he is sitting, else he will simply munch away while continuing to play games on his computer or console.

9) Set conditions: Allow gaming only after certain chores have been completed

Going along with the thought of striking a fine balance between your boyfriend or husband's gaming habits and your relationship needs, try experimenting by making quid pro quo deals.

For example, tell your husband that he can play video games only once he finishes putting his laundry away, taking out the bins and taking the dog out for a walk. Pick out the things that you think have been left unfinished by him and let him play only when those chores have been done.

10) Rub in his failures that were caused by his gaming habits

If your boyfriend or husband is a gaming freak, chances are that his habits have had a negative impact on his studies, work, career and personal life. If this is the case, take every opportunity to rub it in when he starts playing.

Remind him of the poor grades, nag him to study for college, be blunt about the missed work opportunities and subtly point out how his friends have done so much more in their lives. The point is to express your displeasure over the fact that he could be doing something to make yours and his life better rather than nurse a virtual character.

As you keep reminding him of all the real-life negative effects of gaming, he may get his act together over time.

11) Link his gaming habits with sex

How to make a guy stop playing video games? Simply go to him and whisper into his ear that you will show him a naughty time in the bedroom if puts down the video game controller at that very moment.

On the contrary, you can also do the exact opposite by not having sex with your partner until he tones down his gaming habits.

12) Join him to share and control his gaming habits

Everyone has likes and dislikes and if your boyfriend or husband loves gaming, it may be unfair to totally bar him from doing something that is of his interest. Rather, join in the fun by asking him if you can play with him.

Have fun as you race cars, get rid of enemies, level up and do all the other things that are a part of gaming. This way, you will have a better control over his habits by getting up at the right time when the both of you have had enough gaming for the day.

You can even have a weekend night dedicated to gaming, watching movies and having fun with each other.


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    • profile image


      23 months ago

      If you have a problem with it, then the problem lies with you, not him. Either join in or find your own hobby.

    • RachaelLefler profile image

      Rachael Lefler 

      23 months ago from Illinois

      I agree with other commenters. I don't think nagging, sulking, and whining are good solutions. I like that you suggested offering to take him on a date. But ask yourself, do you need all his time? Do you need him to spend every second with you and never have something he enjoys doing by himself? If yes, you're being possessive and controlling. That's not a healthy basis for a relationship.

    • JenniferWilber profile image

      Jennifer Wilber 

      2 years ago from Cleveland, Ohio

      If you can't deal with your boyfriend's hobbies, don't date someone who has those hobbies. You would never tolerate a boyfriend who tried to prevent you from participating in activities you enjoy, would you? It's really immature to expect someone to give up something they enjoy for you. If he suddenly starts playing more than usual and ignoring other responsibilities, there could be a problem (such as depression, for example), and you should try to get him help, but if you're just whining because he likes an activity that you don't enjoy, it's time to grow up. A lot of these "suggestions" sound like emotional abuse.

    • Rain Defence profile image

      Rain Defence 

      7 years ago from UK

      Suggesting stuff like throwing tantrums and sulking if he indulges in one of his hobbies doesn't seem to me to be good advice for how to improve a relationship. I play computer games and if my other half started throwing tantrums, sulking and ignoring me every time I started playing then all that would do is lead to frustration and anger for both of us. A far better idea would be joining in with his gaming on occasion instead of throwing sulks and acting up. Or maybe just letting him play sometimes while you do your own thing. Shouting and sulking is never a good idea and certainly not something that is going to improve any situation I can think of.


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