I am a parent of two young children, and my husband and I both play World of Warcraft. Our children are well fed, well dressed and very well taken care of. We don't play WoW all the time. We only play together on his days off or a little bit before he goes to work. Most of the time he plays when he gets home from work and I'm already sleeping. I'll play when hes at work sometimes, but only if one of my children is napping and the other one is where I can see or hear them. Also, I don't raid. I decided a long time ago that raiding isn't for me (people take it way too seriously, and really, I don't have the time to sit there all night fighting the same boss over and over). He raids though, and that's fine. I'm still available for our kids if they need us, and we can both still play the game. It baffles me how people can get so caught up in the game that they don't address their children's most basic needs.
When I first started playing WoW, I was in a really great guild. I miss that guild a lot, except for this one girl. She was the type of girl that girl gamers hate - she constantly used the fact that she was a girl to get things that she wanted in-game. Anyway, she was always logged on. I mean, always. It didn't matter what time I signed on, she was always on. She's kind of like Clara from the Guild (just not as funny). At first I thought she might just be lonely and all her friends were in-game, which I kind of understand (I don't really have any friends locally, and at that time, that guild held all the people I could count as friends). But you could hear her kids yelling for things to eat when she was talking on Vent and she'd get so put out about it. And when her husband was home, she never did anything. She always made him do stuff for the kids. He was in our guild too, so we got hear both sides of it. Eventually it came out that she had started a thing with someone in the guild, and he went to visit her. He said that her house was filthy. He said that it smelled like urine, and that she let her kids run around in just their dirty diapers. He also said that the kids were really dirty, and that she barely fed them (mostly just juice and crackers). And even while he was there, all she wanted to do was play WoW. Talk about an addiction. I do believe that authorities were called on her, but I don't think anything ever came of it. I always think about her when I hear about these abuse stories though, if shes going to be one of them one day. I don't play on her server anymore, and since her guildie romance went South, I don't know anyone that talks to her. I can only hope that shes changed her priorities and put her kids ahead of WoW.
Whats that tip from Blizzard that appears occasionally on the loading screen? Take everything in moderation, even World Of Warcraft (I might be paraphrasing there). More people should take Blizzard's advice.