5 Signs Football Season Is Ruining Your Marriage

We are about halfway through football season. And for some of you, your obsession with football is slowly ruining your marriage.

“Whoa, whoa, whoa,” you say. “It’s just a game. How could it possibly be ruining my marriage?”

You’re right about one thing: it is, indeed, just a game.

The NFL is worth $45 billion. That’s the same as a little coffee company you may have heard of called Starbucks. The top 20 NCAA football teams generate around $1.2 billion per year, and there is plenty more where that came from.

That is $46.2 billion worth of power that can consume some people’s lives for four months out of the year.

For some of you, your entire weekend is centered around a four-hour block of time when your team is playing. If you are a passionate watcher of football, this sounds like guaranteed fun every weekend. If you have a spouse and family who are just as passionate, then you’re in luck. That, however, is rare.

Let’s look at this a little closer. Here are 5 signs that football season is ruining your marriage.

  1. You look forward to it more than you do time with your family.

You study the schedule, keep a solid watch on the rankings, and know every player by name–perhaps even a little bit about their personal lives. You “bleed” the colors of your team. And each and every week for fourth months, the anticipation kills you. You wake up early on Saturday and Sunday to catch the pre-game broadcast, and then linger after the game for interviews and analyses. You catch the drift.

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Do you have this kind of anticipation for time with your spouse or family? If you’re honest with yourself and the answer is no, it may be time to reevaluate your priorities. Sending this kind of message may be slowly ruining your marriage.

  1. You regularly silence your family in the middle of a big play.

Let’s be honest: there are fewer things more rude than hushing somebody in the middle of a sentence. This is especially true if your reason for it is the interruption of a big play. It sends one message: “What I have going on is much more important that anything you may have to say.”

A football game lasts around four hours. And if you regularly do this, that is four hours of the day when your spouse or family essentially have to ask permission or wait for the right time to speak to you. It sounds ludicrous when you say it that way (or at least, we hope it does).

There is no way to make this one sound any better than it is. If this is how you behave, you’re likely sending the worst kind of message to your spouse.

  1. You pass on fun adventures week after week because your team is playing.

You have one life to live–one to give to the people that you love the most–and limited time to make it the very best it can be. Football is fun, but it can wait. Making memories with your family, however, cannot.

Do you want your legacy to be that you passed your family up for a game, or that you made them a priority? The choice is yours.

  1. Football has even leaked into your weekdays through fantasy sports.

When the Internet entered the world, so did a whole host of new distractions. For some of you, football isn’t just about Sunday anymore. It’s about teams you’re managing and people you’re competing against–sometimes even for money.

Remember, it’s called “fantasy” for a reason. Step back and take a good, hard look at your priorities. If fantasy football comes first, it may be time to cut back.

  1. Your mood is based upon the win or loss of your team.

If the outcome of a game–played by players you will likely never meet–has an effect on your mood, then you may need to consider dropping it altogether.

Football is a game, but being the best husband, wife, or parent that you can be is not. If your mood is based on a final score, then football may be ruining your marriage.

The Final Call Is Yours

Many, if not all, of these points come with some harsh truth: the underlying theme here is the idea of idol worship. Simply put: if we place anything we do or have before God and our families, then that thing becomes an idol. It’s not the typical tone we like to take, but we all have habits and behaviors that must be called out from time to time.

It could be very easy to brush off or justify a warning like this. You work hard, so you think you should get your “me time.” You might say it’s “just the way you are,” or that “football is in your blood.”

You might say that you need to have your time with the guys to balance out life. After all, it’s “not really that bad”–or is it?

Football isn’t inherently bad, and it doesn’t have to be all or nothing. But just like any good thing, it can be used and abused. It can be put before what is truly important. And in the case of marriage and family, it could be sending all the wrong messages.

If this is you, be honest. Ask yourself whether you’re being fair to your spouse and your family. If your answer is no, it’s time to put down the remote and spend some time with them.

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11 Comments

  • Footballman234 says:

    Thank you so much for all the amazing information

  • James says:

    yeh, i love football

  • Baller2v2 says:

    this will help in my project thxxxxx

  • J-Lynee says:

    This is definitely my husband. Not only does he watch them ALL, he also coaches JFL. Every year it gets worse and we’re in year 5. He has 6 years remaining in his cycle. I don’t know if he truly does not understand or doesn’t want to. Now he claims I just want to control him. We’ve gone days without speaking because I disagree with a decision he’s made (regarding football). Im nearing the end of my rope. Our relationship didn’t start this way. What shall I do?

  • Sarah says:

    Hands down, the best article I have read regarding this issue. It seems like such a small issue but it really does affect a marriage. My husband is obsessed with football and in addition to watching EVERY SINGLE GAME that Auburn plays, he spends every day after work watching press conferences, ESPN, or some random person on YouTube give their opinion about the team and its players. It is becoming incredibly annoying. We have only been married for 3 years but I don’t know if I can handle this every Fall for the rest of my life.

    • Anne says:

      What do you do???? Makes me so sad.

    • Lissette says:

      Here it is another wife who is struggling thanks to the football season. Last Thursday it was Thanksgiving, I cooked all day by myself while my hubby was watching football. We had my cousin and basically friends of mine coming over. My husband shared the meal with us….great by now, but we finished and he sat in front of the tv, few feet away where we were. I stayed in the table with our guests. I felt so bad, that was disrespectful. Well, not for him. Since then we have had some fights. This has been a miserable holliday weekend. I feel that he loves football more than me. I cannot count on him when there is a game, that means every single weekend for more than 4 months.
      He says that I am too much. But he is pushing me off, little by little. He is creating a gap between us, and he doesn’t realize, I have warned him about, but it seems he doesn’t care or he is completely sure about me. I do not what else to do.

    • DIANA WIESE says:

      I feel your pain about having to tolerate a fairly new husband’s passion to football. Just yesterday, I approached my husband of one year about the fact that this would be the 4th weekend where he dedicates his entire weekend, sun up till sun down to tv binging. It is absurd that I suddenly become invisible and no matter how many times I walk by him ( in front of tv) he will go to extremes to move side to side as if to imply I am in the way but not speak a word to me. His behavior has made my own interest for football so stale. Football is an idol for him and I will be praying over this matter.

  • Hannah says:

    My husband asked if he could go to football game (regular season game) 5 days after delivering our first son via c section. No other family in town to help support me and baby during this time. I ended up going into natural labor 10 days before the game. I was a bit stronger 10 days post opp as opposed to 5 days post opp but still was struggling and in pain. Husband went to the game. This Saturday we wants to go to the game again (it’s at 8:30pm and it’s our last weekend before he returns to work). I told him I wasn’t on board with him being at this game (balance). He continues to ask me 😕.
    Heartbroken that he can’t adjust his lifestyle for the 2 weeks post baby being born.

  • MB says:

    This article is crap.

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