Sports fury shows broader issues
- My husband of two years (together for five) loves watching sports. Until a year ago, we were living overseas where access to televised North American games was very limited.
Now, in Canada, he watches nearly every game. I like sports, too, but here’s the problem: He loses his temper when his team isn’t doing well - really loses it. He’ll yell and scream, stomp around, knock things off tables, punch walls, and kick things in our home. His behaviour creates a toxic, stressful environment in our home during game days.
I’m also losing respect for him. There’s nothing appealing about a man in his 30’s throwing a temper tantrum when things don’t go his way. I’m pregnant with our first child and have started leaving home during game time to avoid the stress.
We live in a tiny apartment and I have no other way of escaping it.
If he’d watch the games without losing his temper there’d be no problem, but he can’t or won’t.
I’m too ashamed to tell anyone about this situation.
Otherwise, our lives are fairly stress-free - our marriage is good, we have healthy social lives, both have jobs we love, and our pregnancy was planned. I’ve asked him if he’s happy, he insists he is. He seems to have adjusted well to life in Canada.
I didn’t know that sports triggered stronger reactions until we moved here. I don’t want to ask him to stop watching, it’s one thing he really loves and is passionate about, and I fear he’d resent me for it. Stressed Out
- Many sports fans are passionate about their favourite game or one particular team. Their enthusiasm’s often infectious, even humorous.
But your husband appears to use sports as an outlet for inner rage. others see them. Be sure to ask for more feedback, as you easily could make a mistake. A partner who has been difficult might loosen up. Tonight: TGIF! LEO ( July 23-Aug. 22)
You might be focused on the coming weekend and opting for a more leisurely few days than what you have had in the recent past. Taking time off will help you deal more effectively with others. Use this period to reflect on what you want from someone. Tonight: Schedule a massage. VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22)
If you can, take off early and head to your favorite weekend spot. You might enjoy yourself much more than you realize. You have a way about you that draws a lot of attention, especially when you are out of your immediate circle. Tonight: Go for something exotic. LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22)
You might decide to do something differently from how you have done it in the past. Follow through on your feelings; you will find that your plans become invigorated as a result. A friend has an unusual way of demonstrating his or her caring. Tonight: Add some romance. SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21)
You might consider taking some time off from your usual style. You are likely to enjoy making plans and getting together with others. All you have to do is go along for the ride. The very serious worry – with all the new challenges that a baby brings – is that his ready anger will boil over beyond sports. But of immediate concern, is your stress level. Forget shame. Talk to your doctor about how to handle the effects on you, now.
Also, consider retreating to the bedroom with earphones and a good book, during game time.
Encourage him to watch some games at a sports bar with a friend, where yelling at the screen is a group activity. The crucial need is for him to learn anger management, with professional help. Talk to him – when there’s no game on – about the responsibilities and pressures of becoming a father. Say, gently, that you’re both aware that he sometimes has a short fuse, but that kind of reaction frightens babies, and can be harmful.
Urge him to talk to an anger management specialist to understand the deeper source of his frustration and anger, and learn strategies to handle them differently. Letting go of a need for control is good for you, though it could be difficult. Tonight: Say “yes.” SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21)
You will discover that you have little choice but to put up your feet and relax. You might try to stir up some fun; however, unless it fits into your normal routine, you could find yourself all alone. Someone you care about will appreciate your efforts. Tonight: Friday night rituals. CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19)
Whatever you touch has an element of creativity. A loved one might distance him- or herself, as he or she might not be used to seeing you in this manner. You could find that your feelings are changing about a friend. Tonight: Make amends rather than create an uproar. AQUARIUS ( Jan. 20-Feb. 18)
You will be focused on a personal matter. Dealing with a family member could be somewhat difficult, and it might take all you’ve got to make it work. Your feelings could be changing about this situation, especially if you can detach. Tonight: Invite friends over. PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20)
A friend might be quite rigid. Be more laid-back and observant when it comes to this person. Know that you cannot change anyone but yourself and your reactions. Tap into your imagination when speaking with a child or new friend.