The relationship that men have with sports is something a lot of women will not understand and will find hard to come to terms with. As a loyal and loving Nigerian woman dating a die-hard Arsenal loving Nigerian man, I have learnt to come to terms with the fact that during league season, I had better save important conversations until when he is coherent enough after a match or series of matches to seek me out. Even that is dependent on if his team wins.  Unfortunately for a lot of Nigerian men, a lot of women are not as tolerant as I am to their game season antics. Are you one of those guys whose partner is averse and allergic to sports and football in particular? All hope is not lost. There are small things that you can do that might help your cause when it comes to your woman and sports. They are not sure ways that will work on every woman and they might not even help at all, but there is no harm in trying right?

Buy Her Some Team Wear
Women love gifts and women also love dressing up. Make your woman “feel among” by buying her your team’s jersey. These attractive new designs have made women’s apparel football’s fastest-growing apparel business. Other accessories like socks, a cap, an arm band or whatever you think she will like goes a long way and the nice gesture will give be appreciated. Don’t forget the compliments. Saying stuff like: “You look incredibly attractive/hot/sexy in that jersey” is a sure way to get more points. Which woman doesn’t like to be told she looks nice in something her man bought for her?

Draw Her In With On and Off Field/Court Gossip
After gifts and clothes I think the next best thing women enjoy is some spicy gossip gist. Shows like Keeping up with the Kardashians, are all about gossip and juicy gist about people’s supposedly private lives. So I would definitely be interested in a player if you mentioned he was having some girlfriend or baby mama drama. Or if you told me that a player’s old team is playing against his new team he got benched or something of the sort (if stuff like that happens). Or if you are watching the New Orleans Saints (Reggie Bush), say, “Hey, that’s the guy who used to date Kim Kardashian.” Basically make the sports relatable. That way it is easier for her to remember players, teams and such because she can match them to one gist or other you guys have had.

Don’t Make This a “Me vs. You” Thing
The last thing you want to do is present watching sports as a brutal battle between my interest and yours. You never want to engage in a “well last weekend we went to watch an Indian movie so this weekend we’re watching slam dunks/grown men chasing after a ball” kind of debate because it never makes sense. We women have this weird way of rationalizing fairness in their heads in a way that I can’t even begin to break down. The second you make sports about you and your interests, is the second she’ll dig around to try and find something that she has in her life that matches your love of sports. Then you’re stuck and being stuck in an argument with your women never really turns out well.

Be “Mr Nice Guy”
If you buy beer to watch during the game, buy me a drink you know I like. If you want her to make you yummy homemade snacks, buy her a box of chocolates and some scented candles. If you mix a drink for the game, bring her a glass too. Be nice and think ahead, she will like that you haven’t forgotten her because of your game.

Be very patient with her when she asks questions about the game
The few time I watch soccer with my boo, I try not to ask anything, no matter how much I would love for him to just explain what the heck an offside is. Not knowing what is going on won’t help me enjoy what I am watching so naturally I am gonna ask you what’s going on.  Her asking you stuff while you are watching the game means that she is paying attention and is trying to understand the workings so she can better enjoy the game with you. As much as this might drive you crazy, if you patiently answer her questions, she will become more interested in the game. Remember, if you are going to wait till half time or commercials to answer her questions, then make sure she knows so that so that she doesn’t feel like she is being ignored.

Play sports with her
This is another opportunity to teach her about the game. Once she sees how difficult a sport can be, she might appreciate the athletes more. Besides, it is also a good excuse to grab her, tumble around and get touchy feely (depending on the sport) with your girl. :D If she is not a very physical person, then play a video game of the sport with her. Might not be the same but will still give her a feel for the game. Don’t get really competitive, and don’t bring your friends. And don’t be bossy. Make this a fun time for her. Crack some jokes. Tell her that you’ll (insert chore here) whenever she scores a goal or makes a basket or if her team wins (in the case of video games).

Watch some sports movies and documentaries
I LOVE movies and using a movie to try and make me see a point will definitely gain the person introducing the movie some bonus points. Sports movies and documentaries do a great job of dramatizing the action on the field. So find some news stories on YouTube of athletes doing amazing charity work, or get a cool movie based on your sport of choice and watch it with your woman. It might help her connect with the stuff going on down on the field a bit better. The sappier the movie is, the better your cause. I’m just kidding. No, not really.

Find Her a “Favorite Player” or “Favorite Team”
As your girlfriend starts to realize that there are some real juicy storylines in sports, and some incredible personalities, she’ll start to gravitate towards certain players and it’s your job to encourage it. If she’s remotely broaching the idea of liking a particular team or player, then it’s your job to do everything right so she a) doesn’t pick an awful team and b) doesn’t make “sports” a passing fancy. Even if she likes the player cos of how hot, cute or sexy they are, don’t sweat about it. Nothing wrong with a lil’ girl crush. After all, you have your celeb crushes too. Once she gets attached to a favorite player, and a favorite team, you’ve pretty much won her over. Buy her a jersey. Support this new endeavor of hers in every way possible but make sure it’s her choice and not yours. If she’s just following your favorite team, then it won’t feel like hers.

Don’t overdo it
You love sports and are probably excited to share this passion with her, but understand that her level of enthusiasm may never quite match yours. Recognize that her attempt to be interested and watch a game with you doesn’t mean she wants to watch every game in the season.
Start slowly. Even though this may be difficult for you, she’ll probably be more willing to watch sports if it isn’t something you try to get her to do every day.

If all else fails, get another TV. Remember guys, spending time watching a game with your woman is a good an excuse as any to spend time with your woman. After all, what’s a relationship if you both can’t spend time with each other doing something either one or both of you love. Please note that these are not set in stone rules or anything like that, they are just things that work on me as a lady and I feel will also go a long way with other ladies when it comes to their men and sports. On the other hand, I am but one woman in the sea of many so of course these things that work for me, might not hold water with another woman. SO always ask your woman for her opinion before going all out trying to win her sports favour.

Credit: Urbanmen

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