How Yankees Fans will Win the World Series – with Their Wives

With a Yankees victory hanging in the balance, many male fans lose sight of what -- and who -- is most important.
By: Richard Drobnick, Mars & Venus Counseling Center
Newest Richard and John Gray
Newest Richard and John Gray
Oct. 20, 2010 - PRLog -- After Robinson Cano's disputed homer, Texas hit four of its own to rip Yankees 10-3 and take a 3-1 lead closer to the 2010 World Series.  Will there be a giant upset for the Yankees?

Here's another important question: Are ferocious Yankees fans ready for life after the life of baseball? Especially if – and may this be whispered in the hushed tones and with the utmost respect for our hometown heroes – their beloved Yankees lose?  Relationships, marriages, familial and emotional ties may all weigh in the balance.

"Baseball is a favorite way to escape reality," says Richard Drobnick, LCSW, DCSW of Mars & Venus Counseling Center, Bergen County, with offices in Ramsey, Oradell, and Teaneck, New Jersey.  Richard Drobnick's counseling center practices the philosophy of Dr. John Gray, best-selling author of "Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus.” “It’s great to focus on problems that seem bigger than your own.  When a man believes that his screaming at the TV or painting his face to go to a live game will help Yankees, he is focusing on his team’s problems and not on his problems.  He disengages from his everyday stresses.

Male fans aren't the only ones who fall deeply into Yankees fanaticism, but female fans are less likely to wrap their egos in the future of their team, says Drobnick.

Richard is also a die-hard baseball fan and understands the fanaticism; nevertheless, Drobnick still gives the following advice: It is very important to take a deep breath and realize it's still just a game. Life will not end as we know it.  And you need to be attentive of your partner (it's almost always a wife or girlfriend), including the days and nights when you're on the couch in front of the TV, trembling with anticipation.

Richard knows it’s easier says than done.  Male fans can become estranged from loved ones when the emotional thrill ride of watching an exciting game becomes too addictive.  Not only do some men spend too much time watching, but if their team loses, a black cloud is over their heads for days on end.

“If the Texas Rangers defeat the Yankees, men can be depressed for a day or two," Richard explains, “Whereas if the Yankees come back and win, men have their heads held high, they're in a good mood for days.  They take the win as their own."

And the manner in which the team loses is also significant.  “There cannot be a blow-out.  There cannot be a sweep.  Men understand that the Yankees team can lose, but the players’ hearts, minds, and souls must have still been in it. The Yankees cannot be slaughtered.  That can bother a male fan for days as well.

"If a man is obsessed with sports to the point that it takes him away from his girlfriend or wife, she'll feel low on his priority list," he says. The long-term cost of a man pulling away from his significant other to watch sports games can be resentment on the part of the woman. While men may see big events like the play-offs or World Series as a chance to go all out with their enthusiasm for the game, it may in fact be the last straw for their frustrated partners.

To help prevent this resentment, Richard explains that women need to understand and be ready for this possible post-game depression.

"If a man feels that depression, a man may need 'cave time,' " Drobnick says.  "He may need some alone time to deal with the loss of his team. And for a while a woman should not run after him to talk about it because it will make him feel worse. ... A woman has trouble understanding this, because when a woman talks about her problems, she feels better, which is opposite of a man."

Many times when women do not want to talk and pull away, it means that they are upset with their partners.  Women sometimes unconsciously think men pull away for the same reason, so when he continues to want to be alone, in her frustration, she wants to take a battering ram to the cave’s entranceway and get him to come out. "He needs to stay in his cave," Drobnick says.

A man also must do what he can to help a woman not become resentful of his cave time.  A grieving male fan should tell his significant other that he needs time alone.  He needs to tell that he will return to his old self and will make up for his time away by being an attentive partner, advises Drobnick.

And woman should not just sit in front of him or hover around him waiting for him to come back.  “It’s like putting vinegar in front of a bear’s cave, instead of honey.”  A woman should do something for herself during this time, preferably away from him.  Perhaps hang out with friends, watch her favorite shows, go to a spa -- do something for herself.

Women and men can also band together. Male fans can also teach their significant others the ins and outs of the American past-time of baseball.  Joining together against a common enemy is a fun way to connect and re-connect. Rooting for the Yankees can be healthy activity.

"With people debating about the recession, joblessness, foreclosures happening left and right,” he says, "Many negative things are on people's minds.  Baseball takes their minds off some of what is happening in the world that may be stressful."

Richard also adds that if men and women learn about their particular needs and ways of coping too late and resentment has reached a peak where there seems to be no turning back, it may be time for the couple to come in counseling.  At the Mars & Venus Counseling Center, both partners in the relationship attend marriage counseling or couples counseling sessions to discuss the couple’s specific issues. The aim of counseling is to help a couple deal appropriately with their immediate problems and learn better ways of communicating in general and meeting each other’s emotional needs.

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