The real life consequences of video games

Apparently video games can have serious real life consequences. Check out this Time article about how a woman divorced her husband in real life because he cheated on her in the game Second Life.

I’ve heard of other incidents such as people suing others for stealing their virtual “property,” but this one takes the cake. Pretty soon, there won’t be much difference between the real and virtual worlds.

Excerpt – “When Briton Amy Taylor caught her husband cheating on her with a prostitute, she reacted as many women would – she filed for divorce. What made the break up newsworthy was that the “cheating” was virtual and the “prostitute” was actually a divorced mother of two living in Arkansas. Taylor’s husband committed the infidelity using his avatar in the computer role-playing game Second Life, but Taylor – who married her husband in 2005 and again in a lavish virtual ceremony in Second Life -viewed the online betrayal as cheating and used it as grounds for a very real divorce in the British courts.”

2 thoughts on “The real life consequences of video games

  1. My opinion is that, while it makes for an interesting premise, or launching point for a creative idea (a song, novel, short story, screenplay, etc.) in a “reality”-based view (at least *my* version of reality), this particular incident, and others like it, are revealing only in that the individuals involved have other (sometimes MANY other) issues. I can sit around playing a video game in which I’m paying a hooker to blow me and my fiance would not leave me for it, even if there IS a “real” woman behind the “digital hooker”. That’s not to say that my fiance wouldn’t question my motives, why I would feel the need to explore such activities – even virtually. But at the end of the day my fiance is a smart enough woman to understand that a “digital blowjob” is a far cry away from a “real” one. The trouble in such a situation would be when my “virtual” life becomes a substitution for my “real” life. If I’m not paying attention to my fiance’s emotional and/or sexual needs, but I’m spending time (even worse if it’s a considerable amount of time) pursuing such activities – even virtually – with another woman.

    This reminds me of one of my favorite quotes from the movie When Harry Met Sally where Harry and his friend are talking at a football game and Harry reveals that he’s discovered his wife has been cheating on him and has moved out. The friend, hoping to offer comfort and wisdom states, “Marriages don’t break-up on account of infidelity. Infidelity is only a symptom that something else is wrong.”

    To which Harry replies, “Well, that ‘symptom’ is f**king my wife.” — it’s all perspective.


  2. This is very true. I used to play a lot of online games, and many players are way too serious or seem to have a lot of emotional baggage. Whether these type of games bring out the worst in people or these people are just like this anyway is debatable. Probably both. I quit playing when I felt that I was getting too serious – looks like it was just in time!


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