Integrating a New Geek Into Your Family

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Rory, our new geek. Photo: Jenny Williams
Rory, our new geek. Photo: Jenny Williams

The past several months have been an interesting and very rewarding experience. The kids and I have managed to integrate a new geek into our home and our family.

Rory moved in last December. It was an easy transition for me, since I’m the one who wanted him there. It was a bigger challenge for the kids, since they’d had a much harder time with the divorce than I did. Plus, Rory was now in a role that, while not replacing their dad to the kids, filled the partner role in my life. But, we found that with shared interests, both those that had already been established and those that were newly acquired, everyone bonded more closely.

The kids and I brought a lot of board games to the table. I’ve loved games my whole life. My daughter also enjoys them. My son is obsessed. Rory’s often up for a good challenge, and has really enjoyed playing games with us. We also have been introducing and encouraging a lot of geek culture in him. Star Trek, Doctor Who, and the like.

Rory brought his own interests into the fold. He’s got us playing D&D occasionally. And he sucked the rest of us into World of Warcraft. It’s something he and I can play together, and we use it as incentive for the kids.

Using our geeky interests has been incredibly useful in making the household fully integrated together, and to help the kids and Rory relate to one another. If you’re ever in a position to integrate a geek into your household, either through a new relationship, adoption, or just friends and family who are visiting, introduce them to some of your geeky interests, and learn about some of theirs. It will create closer knit ties, and supply some fantastic shared experiences.

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1 thought on “Integrating a New Geek Into Your Family

  1. This was a wonderful post–and I have to say, from my own experience, that your suggestion is spot on. We welcomed a foster son into our family a few years ago, and gaming just created an instant “in” for him. Sometimes it might have seemed like we were going overboard–every time we had even a spare fifteen minutes, we would drag out a game, and would play sometimes three or four games a day. It provided time for us to all be together, to communicate, to get through some emotions (winning/losing, et;, especially with a troubled kid, knowing how to lose is tremendously important), and to have some healthy competition where no one had to worry about bullying. Most importantly, we had fun. D didn’t realize he was a geek when he came to our house, but when he left it several months later, he embraced it (along with his new pink and purple hearing aids!). Playing games also helped establish…not a pecking order, but it showed everyone that each person in the family has skills–they aren’t all the same, but they are all valuable.

    Congratulations on the newest addition to your family. It pleases me that you took such care to “do it right” (whatever “right” is–it was right for YOUR family!). Also, greeting from another geeky homeschooler!

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