Welcome to Cthulhu Mom Games – a blog about my experiences raising a child in a gaming family.
I think one of the biggest challenges for any gamer (or human for that matter) is finding a group with whom you really connect. There are so many different types of games out there. And different ways to play those games. And some people take their game play very seriously and others don’t. Schedule conflicts. And let’s not forget since we’re all sapient beings that personalities need to gel at least a little to be a successful gaming group.
Take all of that and toss kids in the mix. Does everyone with children hire a babysitter? Do you pull resources and hire one sitter for the group of kids? Is one of the kids in the group old enough to be that babysitter? Do you just bring the kids to the game session and know you’ll be interrupted every ten seconds (knowing that if it was just one family’s kids you might get a whole uninterrupted 30 seconds)? Are the kids invited to play?
A running theme in this blog is my awesome gaming group/awesome friends. While they are childless they are all very accepting and understanding of the challenges that come with having a child while trying to game. However we also only have one child and up to six adults. The adult gamers have a decided advantage over the situation.
But what do you do when the children equal or out-number the adults?
You jump on the internet and hope to find other gamer parents with whom to bond!
In a passive way that’s what I’ve been doing with this blog. However, about two months
ago my husband got a notification from Meet Up that there was a local gamer parent looking to meet other gamer parents. We’ve lived in the same town for ten years and we
knew we couldn’t be the only gamer parents in town. We just had no idea how to meet them. Despite the fact that we both have Meet Up accounts. Yeah. Sometimes you get so wrapped up in how you’re used to doing things you forget about the tools at your fingertips. Lucky for us someone else didn’t.
We had our first initial meet up and it went well. Mostly. Unfortunately everyone attending was new to Meet Up, so none of us knew how to find each other at the chosen location. My husband, Yog and I had arrived to the pub early. We had spent the whole day doing some heavy lifting around the house and by the time we were done we didn’t have time to shower and eat before going, so we chose to have dinner out as a reward for our hard work. We were seated at a table, watching hockey, chatting, eating, entertaining Yog and waiting for the others to arrive. Around 7:05 I said to my husband, “So, how do we find this group? I’ve never done one of these before”. To which he responded “I don’t know, the few that I’ve done I was never the first one there and they flagged me down when I came in”. So I decide to use my phone to see if there was info on the page. Of course my phone didn’t want to connect to the internet. Then I couldn’t remember my password. Then I couldn’t reset my password. Twenty minutes later I finally got on to the site and found a message from the organizer letting everyone know where he was. My husband was going to go find him as I typed in that we were in the enclosed outdoor area (I know that’s a bizarre statement). Our organizer found us! We started chatting and about ten minutes later I saw a gentleman walking through the area looking like he was trying to find someone and thought he might be one of the other group members. I caught his eye and said “Looking for group?” and he was. He went and got his wife and we all started getting to know each other.
Our gaming experience is all over the place, but I think there is plenty of space to find games we can play together. From the three families represented the kids aged from “due in May” to 11, averaging close to Yog’s age.
Unfortunately since we got together at 7 pm and Yog’s bedtime is 7:30 the timing was tough for us on this one. We knew we wouldn’t be staying late but since it took us a while to find each other we chose to stay a little later. Yog was doing all right through most of it, thanks to our fellow diners. Yog wanted to sit on the sidewalk outside and since there was a wall between the sidewalk and parking lot and the seating area was enclosed in clear plastic allowing us to see her, we sent her out. Where she garnered a lot of attention and even had someone bring a ball out to play catch. When the restaurant emptied is when the trouble started. She was bored. Despite the fact that I brought a purse full of toys for her. In fact, that was the only reason I brought a purse. It was also after 8 pm. We excused ourselves, closed our tab and headed home.
We’re very excited to get connected with other gamer parents in our area. The next step is to keep the ball rolling. I think that may be difficult though. As stated before, we’re all new to the Meet Up concept, so I think there’s going to be bumps in the road figuring that out. Add that to the normal bumps families experience and it may take a while to get this one rolling. For my part I plan on contributing to the page at least once each month and encouraging everyone to get together. Avid readers of my blog know that the spring and fall are very busy times for me and I have very little free time. I may not be able to make a meet up until summer. However, by then our chosen meeting place will have the outdoor dining area uncovered and the kids will be able to run in the surrounding grass. And interrupt the game to their heart’s content. At least that’s what I’m hoping for.
Please feel free to share how you found other gaming families in the comments.
Until then, happy gaming!