World of Warcraft is a best-selling online role-playing game. It boasts over ten million subscribers; however it has apparently also left an increasing number of real life casualties in its wake, including a woman named Jocelyn.
Though she is not a player, the 28-year-old California native has divorced her husband of six years due to his development of what she describes as a “crippling addiction” to the game.
She claimed that shortly after he would come home from work at 6:00 p.m., he would begin playing until 3:00 a.m. She said that he was even worse on the weekends, when he would play from the morning until the middle of the night.
“I ceased to exist in his life,” she said.
Jocelyn and her ex-husband Peter had been friends since age 13. However, nine months was all it took for the marriage to fall apart.
She said she purchased the game as a Christmas present for him in 2004, when it first came out. They had their first serious discussion about the direction of the marriage in May of 2005. She moved out of the house by September 2005.
She also said her ex-husband failed to perform his domestic duties as well. She says that he was no longer paying his bills, nor doing his part of the housework.
She doesn’t hesitate to say that the game was the main reason the divorce took place and is still emotional about the impact it had on the marriage. She was upset that her husband would ruin his life and his marriage for “a fantasy land.”
This story was originally told at Yahoo Games and can be found at this link. Though it only includes one side of the story, if true, it is sad that a video game could cause the break up of a marriage. It reminds me of the title of a good book, Amusing Ourselves to Death. Or, in this case Amusing Ourselves to Divorce.