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'AITA for telling my husband to choose between his PlayStation and our marriage?' UPDATED

'AITA for telling my husband to choose between his PlayStation and our marriage?' UPDATED


It can be really hard to maintain a marriage when you lose all sense of intimacy.

In a popular poston the AITA subreddit, a woman asked if she was wrong for telling her husband to choose between the marriage and his playstation. She wrote:

"AITA for telling my husband to choose his PlayStation over our marriage?"

I (34F) have been with my husband (41M) for 15 years and married for 11 years of those years. We have a 7 year old daughter. We have sex maybe once a year since our daughter was born. I’m always the one that has to initiate any type of intimacy. When we do it’s hard to get him to stay up and it’s a lot of work on my end.

He’s seen a Dr and there’s no issues with labs and he won’t take the “little blue pill,” because he says he doesn’t need it and doesn’t have an issue. My husband has always blamed our lack of intimacy on our daughter since she slept in the bed with us. I’ll try to get him to go in a different room and there’s always some excuse like he’s too tired, but then he will go up to our game room and play his video games.

Our daughter has slept in her own room for over 6 months now and nothing has changed. His excuse is still "well our daughter has slept in the bed with us all this time." My husband is a good person and a good dad. He works hard for his family; he works 60 hours a week, but besides paying the bills that’s the extent of it.

He says he’s tired and tells me I don’t understand the stress of having to take care of the family financially. I work 40 hours a week, have a small business, make all of our appointments, do anything related to our daughter, I’m classroom mom, on PTO.

I do all household choirs: I do all laundry, cleaning, make meals, grocery shopping, take vehicles for oil changes, yard work (I mow and take care of 2.5 acres), and take trash cans out. I do pay some of our bills and I pay for all of our daughter’s extra curricular activities which definitely adds up. He just thinks my load of work and contributions does not amount to what he does.

This past week I got on his phone, because he saves reels on fb for me; normally funny stuff and recipes he wants me to try. I saw in his search history all of these sexier girls and groups he’s been looking at, which really pushed me over the edge. I wouldn’t be mad if he came to me to have s*x and I denied him s*x.

I confronted him about it and he says he doesn’t look that stuff up and I told him I’m not naive and it’s clear as day. Then the next day he says yea he clicks on those girls profiles and groups because he’s a man and likes to look. He’s been locking his Gameroom recently while in there and when he says he’s sleeping I know he’s playing his PS and I guess now he also looks at these different profiles.

I’ve seen lotion up there a long time ago while cleaning and had asked him about it and he swears he’s not jerking off but I’m not stupid and naive. I really just hate being lied to. He says I’m a hypocrite because I watch p0rn, but I wouldn’t watch p0rn and take care of my needs if he would be intimate with me. It’s also not like I’m going to a specific person or their profile when I do pull up a video.

I’ve also been honest with him that I mast*rbate and watch p0rn. I admit I am a hypocrite and guess I’m just hurt, because it just seems it’s me. To me it feels he’s not attracted to me or just doesn’t seem to want me. He says he doesn’t really have a drive and that’s what I had thought but after seeing what he likes to click on I feel he just doesn’t have a drive towards me.

Looks wise people tell him he definitely leveled up. Overall I take care of myself and put effort into my looks. I’m definitely not the hottest or most beautiful, but I’m not bad looking. He’s over weight, short, and balding. Why do I feel like now I don’t look good enough for him or excite him enough to be with?

I told him I want him to get rid of all of the gaming stuff and to not be locked upstairs and to spend more time with me and our family or it’s time for us to divorce. He said he’s not giving up his gaming stuff and doesn’t see how that’s the problem. He told me that I’m going to ruin our family, because all I want is s*x. I’m just tired of begging.

I feel I shouldn’t be begging for intimacy, affection, and him being present with his family. I do so much for everyone and tired of not getting anything in return. I’m tired of putting my wants and needs last. I’m tired of begging him to hangout with us and do family stuff. The only thing that excites him is to go upstairs in the game room and play his video games and I guess now I know he likes to do other stuff as well.

We’ve done the counseling stuff here and there and it gets better for a bit but then goes back to our normal. So am I the AH and a hypocrite? Am I in the wrong and taking things too far?

*Editing to add this about our child sleeping in the bed with us. We both allowed her to sleep in the bed with us. I had tried to boot her out to her own room sooner, but my husband kept saying she wasn’t ready. She’d cry and it was a lot of work and bribery to get her in her own room.

Editing to add another note: There’s definitely two sides to every story and you’re just getting mine. We both have different love languages. Mine is affection and physical touch and his is acts of service. He likes a clean and tidy house and I do my best to keep up with everything home wise. I tried talking to him what makes me happy and what I want but he’s not listening to me.

I feel like a spoiled brat at times because yes he provides financially well for us and I don’t go without. It just sucks. I want to be seen again. We used to be such a team and it’s a pissing contest of you does what. My husband really isn’t a bad person or dad. Our daughter is definitely a daddy’s girl; mostly because I’m the “disciplinary” parent that makes sure she has to brush teeth, school work, and etc.

On our days off together he’ll do a few things with us and then say he needs to get some rest, but he goes upstairs and video games. He really does work too much. He says he works so much, because he wants to make sure we’re taken care of if something happens to him. Which his dad was never there and his mom did struggle when he grew up.

The internet jumped on with lots of thoughts.

BattlingtheMods wrote:

I know the title insinuates gaming over marriage/family, but this sounds like it runs deeper than that. If it wasn’t gaming, it would be golf or something else your husband would use as an escape from his family. It sounds like there is a ton of unresolved issues that have festered for years now. I think trying to establish a line of communication at this point is too late.

I can’t imagine not having constant communication about my partners needs. Agree with others that this relationship may be at an end.

NTA. Good luck.

Sweaty_Elephant_2593 wrote:

I mean I game a lot after the kids go to bed don't get me wrong, probably too much if I'm being honest with myself.

But I also work full time, cook a ton, clean a ton, spend time with the kids when I get back from work, do chores, do the handyman stuff I'm capable of doing and have the money for (replacing the hardware in the back of the toilet for instance), take days off work to go to the kids' events sometimes, etc and I still feel guilty sometimes when I sit down to game at night.

If my wife came to me and said, "You are gaming too much and it's making me sad and I want to spend more time with you," I'd think about what she said and offer some solutions, not just flat out say "Lol no," like it sounds he did.

OP responded:

Your comment really stuck out. Sometimes I do get to the point of frustration, because I wish he’d just see what needs to be done without me having to “nag” him. Every year I ask if he can put Christmas lights up and he doesn’t do it until I finally snap at him. Christmas lights make me and our daughter happy and he knows it, so why do I need to ask him to do it every single year.

My birthday is around Christmas and he doesn’t do anything thoughtful. He says it’s because he’s working and didn’t have time to go get anything, but he can make time to game in order stuff for his games on Amazon. I tell him to make a cake with our daughter and have her make me a card, take her to Walmart and let her pick something out for me. I want him to show my daughter that I matter.

I’m sure you saw the TikTok about the wife’s stocking not having anything in it and that’s another thing I have to tell him to find the time to do for me with our daughter. I just want him to make time and me not have to “nag” him. I think I’m just tired too. I know gaming is his relaxing and winding down time but he’s not understanding prioritizing his family should be first.

LostDadLostHopes wrote:

NTA, but, have a sleep study done. Sex drive is one of the things to go with apnea, and a cpap has restored it for a number of people I know.

And OP responded:

I work for a pulmonologist and he definitely has sleep apnea. I have been making him go to the dr (I even have to go with him to make sure he actually keeps appointments). I’ve even been helping him with weightloss and was hoping 40Ibs down would help with everything. I tried to get him to do a sleep study but he’s not wanting to do one.

He has family history of cardiology issues and he definitely needs a cpap so he can be here as long as possible for our daughter. Only so much I can do.

aroundincircles wrote:

If my kids slept in the bed with me I would never have sex with my wife. I simply do not understand co-sleeping. I have 5 kids, and they have NEVER slept in the same bed as my wife and I. Even when they were nursing we had a bassinet next to the bed, but once they slept more then 5 hours at night, they transitioned into their own room.

I would transition your kid to their own bed/room as a step one, and Both of you need to knock off the porn entirely. He's meeting his needs s*xually with porn, and you're using it out of desperation, both are toxic to long term relationships.

After receiving lots of feedback, OP jumped on with an update a couple days later.

I am overwhelmed by the response from my first post and appreciate the feedback. I wasn’t expecting to write an update this soon or even at all. Also I realized as I was blindly rage writing my issues to a bunch of strangers I didn’t write the title properly, so I corrected it in this post update. Yesterday I messaged my husband the following:

“Why should we stay together; just for our daughter? What do you love about me besides being a good mother and wife? What do you like about me? What are things you want from our relationship that you’re not getting besides financial? ⁃ What do you think I contribute to our relationship? Do you really not want sex or a physical relationship? Do you think that’s not an issue?"

"I need a physical and intimate relationship. That’s something that’s important to me. it’s more than just sex. Am I not attractive to you; do you not desire me? Please be honest. Why do you hide the fact that you masturbate? Why can’t you see why I’m upset and that my feelings are valid? You think I’m upset over nothing. I feel you take my words as if they are water being poured into a colander."

"You hold no value to what I say. Why can’t you see my pain? You think this is easy on me? Have I thrown too many empty threats to you that you don’t take this and what I say seriously? Where can we go from here? Can we work it out? Sometimes my issue is that you can’t be honest with me that there’s an issue. I hate when you don’t take accountability and place blame elsewhere."

"We’re adults, we make mistakes and we should take accountability for what we say and do. I know I’m not who I was and i don’t love who I am right now. I don’t like nagging, yelling, and begging. Begging you for help, attention, and affection. I’ll go back get a better paying job and help more with finances if we decide to move forward. In return you’ll have to help more with our family."

"Help worry about finding a sitter for our daughter, who’s picking her up from school, you’ll need to help and call out when she’s sick, take off for field trips, help make her lunches, take her to extracurriculars, and help more with daily tasks.”

He never responded. Instead I saw where he played over 3 hours on his PlayStation. To me that speaks volumes.

Someone messaged me this link:

That story really resonated with me and it hit close to home. I guess I’m at the point where I don’t want a roommate any more. I just want a partner that cares and can see the value I bring to our relationship and our family. Many of the originally post responses talk about how I just want sex and that’s really not it. I want intimacy and a yearning to feel loved and longed for.

I want our relationship to be where we are a team again and it no longer feels like a pissing contest of who does what. I guess we are past that point of working things out.Now my concern is how to make this an easy transition for my daughter. I will continue to put a smile on my face and hold back my pain, because as a parent how she feels and what she sees comes first. I don’t want her to feel blame or to be sad.

I know it won’t be easy, but thank you strangers for your advice even when some of it stung a little. As I’ve said I know it’s hard to have an opinion when you’re only getting one side. I’m not an angel in any of this and take accountability for my parts for the ending of this chapter. I guess it’s time to move on.

People jumped on with lots of responses to this update.

410Writer wrote:

Whoa, things have really escalated since your last post! It's clear that you've been dealing with a lot of emotional turmoil in your marriage, and it's never easy when communication breaks down like this. Your decision to address the issues in your relationship and eventually separate is a tough one, but sometimes it's necessary for both parties' well-being.

It's important to prioritize your happiness and emotional health. Just remember that co-parenting will be crucial as you move forward, so make sure your daughter feels loved and supported. Keep your chin up, and take care of yourself during this transition. Remember that you've got a community of strangers (and friends) here to support you through the ups and downs of life.

OP responded:

I’ll keep things cordial. I’m currently taking her to pick a cake and presents out for his birthday.

Material_Cellist4133 wrote:

You don’t want to spend the rest of your life this way. You know what you deserve. Also, I recommend therapy so you can see your self worth. You shouldn’t have to beg for intimacy - that’s not a relationship. You are right, it’s a marriage solely for your daughter. It’s better to divorce now otherwise you will end up resenting your child for making you suck in a loveless marriage.

Brilliant_Chicken153 wrote:

Let me try to give you a little perspective on this from the other side. I am recently divorced after 15 years of marriage. I liked to game, and that did contribute to the failure of my marriage, but gaming for me was a mental escape from a lot of issues that were really going on in the marriage. I discovered through therapy that it wasn't an addiction, it was dissociation.

It was my way of coping with or ignoring the problems with the rest of my life. Since we split, I haven't even had an urge to game once, which says a lot. For years I felt that my wife did not respect me or appreciate me. She was never affectionate outside of s*x, never told me thank you, never did little things to make me feel important. If I did something, it wasn't appreciated because that was just expected.

If I didn't do something, she was mad because 'I should just know.' If I did something 99% correct, I failed and she would be disappointed at the failure. I used to joke I could get groceries, but if I got 99 items right, and forgot 1 thing, she'd just be upset with me. Eventually this bred into me that I was never good enough, and never would be. I felt like she didn't love 'me' for who I was as a person.

The only way I could really maintain my sanity was to check out through video games. There were times I thought about just ending it all so she might see the impact of what I do if it was lost, and maybe actually appreciate what I did do. I couldn't communicate with her about my feelings because that would just be failing even more in my head. Or made me feel like an even more of a burden on my family.

And I didn't feel vulnerable enough to open up and communicate anymore, because I didn't feel safe being vulnerable with her anymore because of that mentality bred into me. I was working full time and going to college just to try to make a better future for my family. I felt like I was really investing in our future, and it felt like she could have cared less.

I remember times I'd mow the lawn, and she'd one time say it looked nice, man that one compliment was so huge. But it shouldn't have been. It should have been like that a lot. But then I'd spend hours shoveling our driveway after a snowstorm, and she'd get mad because I didn't scrape it down enough or make it wide enough. How women need love and affection, men need respect and appreciation.

If he is working 60 hours a week and feels that he is not appreciated for it, and it's just what's expected of him, that hurts. No one wants to go to work every day. To him, that may feel like a big sacrifice he's making for his family. For you to offer for him to work less, may just make him feel like more of a failure, because now he can't even handle his provider duties.

There was a time I felt my wife was proud of me. Proud to introduce me to people as her husband. Proud that I was her man. This diminished over time. Looking back on it all, it was a negative spiral that both our actions led to the devolution of the marriage. It takes one person to stop the cycle and maybe have a hope for repair. I don't know him, but if I had to guess, he doesn't feel appreciated or respected.

I'd highly recommend marital counseling, but I'd also recommend being vulnerable and telling him that you do appreciate and respect him and his sacrifices to the family, and that you value him and what he provides. Tell him he's a great dad and great person. Encourage him. Encouragement can bring out great behavior in people. Positivity.

I know he's not providing to your needs, but it seems there is something you're not providing to him either, and he's not willing to be vulnerable enough to tell you what that is. You may get better results by finding out what he's missing that is causing him to check out of the marriage. If it's some simple things you could change, it may make him start to invest more.

And maybe try to do some things like plan a surprise trip for just the two of you. Or even a nice evening date night. Greet him at the door with a big hug and kiss when he gets home from work and take his jacket, or offer him a back rub at bed time. Just try to do some small out of the ordinary things that will make him feel valued.

Just from my personal perspective, it may jump start him into being more interested in being intimate with you again. And that's not to say everything you're doing now isn't adequate. It's extremely great and you deserve appreciation too. But it seems both of you kind of see those things as just your roles and dont appreciate or value them, and it's causing you both to check out.

Honestly I bet he could write up an entire post on here with his point of view and what he feels is lacking. Communication here is failing. You HAVE to get 2 way communication going. One of you needs to give in to have a shot to save the marriage and it sounds like he won't. If my ex had just made me feel appreciated or respected, I think I would have checked back in.

I wanted desperately to be with her and give her the best life I could, but she made me feel like I was not good enough and would never be. All I wanted was to feel important in her eyes again. To feel like she was proud of me. Take it for what it's worth, but that was my experience and I see a lot of similarities here. I'd love to see you guys repair and save your marriage. Best of luck to you both!

And OP responded:

I appreciate your message and your perspective. I really do. When he gets home he says how tired he is and bolts it upstairs to the game room to “sleep” before we can even get a hello in. Then I hear him on his game up there.

I tell him and I tell our daughter how thankful I am for how he provides for his family. I’ve helped him lose weight and I’ve told him how good he’s looking and how proud I am of his weight loss even though he’s getting the results by medication.

I make sure the house is nice and tidy before he gets home, I pack his work bag, clean his clothes, make his lunches, and buy his snacks. What I get in return is most of our bills paid by him and nothing more unless I “ask” him several times to do something. When I ask him to go to a family event he says he’s tired and doesn’t go.

When he goes he complains the whole time about how tired he is. He can’t just do what I do and just put a smile on his face. I think I don’t have anymore to give. I got to this point and asked him to make a sacrifice for me and his response was no response, but instead he played 3 hours on his game. When do I deserve to get some extra effort from our marriage?

Brilliant_Chicken153 responded:

I can totally empathize. Sounds like he's not even open or appreciative to kind things you're trying to do for him. Well then the only other thing I could think of is trying to get him to open up to what's making him unhappy to where he needs to escape to his games every waking moment. Put the onus on him to explain what he feels he is not getting that causes him to game nonstop.

When I gamed, I would still make time for my family and it sounds like he won't. You may have already made up your mind, but if you're still on the fence, pushing aside your hurt and concerns temporarily and finding out from his perspective why he is checking out in gaming, might give you some insight. I'm guessing he wasn't always this way? Something seems to be fundamentally not working.

Couples therapy could help but a lot of therapists are not that great. Not sure if it's an option, but maybe a separation or leaving for a few weeks could make him wake up? Barring that, if you do go through a divorce, I wish you the best of luck. They are not fun.

And OP responded:

This was his response a day later, “OP if I don’t make you happy then I don’t want to force something that’s not gonna make you happy. I’m fine with what you want to do. I do love you and I shouldn’t have to prove that after being together for 14 years. We can go our ways. I will financially support you and Landrie to the best of my ability. Only have a few request."

"That where ever you decide to move, please stay within 30 miles of each other so I can see Landrie and I can help better. I can pay your mortgage on a 250k dollar house if you put 100k down and will of course pay for whatever Landrie needs. When we sell the house I want 100k and you can have everything else. I need you to pay the Tesla off. I owe 33k."

"We need to at least get 600k for our home if not more. I hate that it’s come down to this but will help you achieve happiness as long as we can agree on some terms with our child and finances.”

BeardManMichael wrote:

Addiction destroys lives. You are right to prioritize your daughter. Your happiness and her happiness are the most important things at the moment.

You were never the AH.

OP was never TA in this situation, it seems like her husband practically dared her to divorce him by checking out.

Sources: Reddit
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