I cannot play video games. First-person shooter games make me wish I could turn the gun on myself. I am invariably last in racing games. Even Frogger defeats me. Moreover, I never really had an interest in them when I was growing up.
This has actually had an impact on my relationships. In fourth grade I made a fool of myself playing a soccer video game with a boy I liked. In high school, I spent a lot of time squished on the edge a couch while my boyfriend, his buddies, and their girlfriends chased each other around various courses. Sometimes I napped.
I was not an Awesome Girlfriend. Because my hands turned into donkey hooves when I held a controller, I could never be as cool or epic or sexy as a girl who's good (but not too good) at driving a car and shooting zombies. A girlfriend who plays video games is exponentially more attractive than one who can't navigate a frog across a street.
This came up a few nights ago. Jim found an admittedly fun-looking game on Xbox Live - a plane-chase game based on the Peanuts characters. He asked me to play. I said no, I said no, and then I got insecure. If I keep saying no, then I am a Downer Girlfriend again. I'm always saying no. So I agreed to play.
Of course it was a shit show. I couldn't move the plane where I needed to and Jim was (literally) flying circles around me. I got more and more frustrated and all I could think about was how I am not epic, I am not awesome, I blow really hard at a very simple hand-eye coordination task. I was in tears.
I know Jim does not base his love for me on my Call of Duty or Modern Warfare performance. But I think my inability to play video games taps into a big fear I've always had in relationships - that I'm simply too dull to sustain someone's interest.
Do you have a relationship fear or worry as silly as this one?