I am lucky enough to be married to my best friend, and we're still newlyweds (only married 10 months). My husband is addicted to sports, and more importantly, Fantasy Football. His life, and therefore, our life, revolves around sports. If it's not Michigan football, the NFL, or fantasy football, then it's hockey, baseball, tennis, golf and sometimes poker. We even had to plan our wedding around the University of Michigan football season! I learned early on that if I was going to have any chance of competing for his attention during football season, I better learn something about his affliction... I mean addiction.
I'm not completely out of the loop when it comes to sports; I've always been a casual fan. However, I have not completely submerged myself into the Fantasy World like my husband has. My goal is to help wives like me cope with their husbands' constant need to be glued to the television and/or internet during Fantasy Season. There are 135 days to go until Super Bowl XLIV, and more importantly 135 days until I can get my husband back. That is until hockey playoffs come around.
I am an attorney and just like I have to do with the practice of law, I have to find solutions that we can both live with in our marriage. I have found that learning a little bit about Fantasy Sports is a great way to improve our relationship and get him to compromise and spend time doing things other than watch football. And this was a challenge. When I first heard about Fantasy Sports it sounded really silly to me. It seemed like my husband and his buddies got together and acted like little boys. They use "smack talk" and insult each other and they think it's hilarious. They have even gone so far as to emasculate each other by referring to each other with names like Tonya, Christy and Natasha instead of Tony, Chris and Nate. I honestly didn't get it. It's bad enough that he sat and screamed at the TV when his team was losing but now with Fantasy Football he sits and screams and it doesn't matter which team is winning or losing, now it matters how his PLAYERS are doing, And how his Fantasy Team is doing against his opponent's Fantasy Team.
Here was my first question that drove me crazy: why is it that these guys spend hours and hours negotiating draft picks, then spend a few hours drafting players and then spend hours and hours negotiating trades of those picks?? This is what I learned: Before the draft, depending on your philosophy on where the players are going to go in the draft and depending on the league that you are in and the number of players at each position would depend on when you want to make your picks (in which rounds etc). After the draft, fantasy players may have a void on their fantasy team that needs to be filled so they trade players in positions that they have more players than they need for players in positions that are lacking.
This is what I really think: These guys need to feel like they're in control and that what they're doing is important :) Then they have buyers’ remorse and try to convince their friends that they have a deal that will "benefit both of them". Honestly, if someone is trading players it's because he wants someone new and is not satisfied with his (or her) team. It's not because he is looking out for your best interest. But regardless, the draft is a very important part of the fantasy experience.
I helped my husband with his fantasy draft this year by analyzing available players while other players were being drafted. This helped me learn who was on his team and who to look for during the game and make an effort to at least follow those players. And for all my hard work, I got an extra date night...dinner and an evening void of sports.
Tip for the week: Find out at least a couple of players on your husband's (or wife's) team. They will be impressed with your interest and may even attempt to get involved with something that you're doing that doesn't involve football. Bonus...you can have conversation that doesn't involve how many points you got for Drew Brees's touchdown passes...take what you can get for now!
- Hayley Rosner