I’m not engaged but we’re getting there so I hope this makes me eligible for your wise counsel. My boyfriend of 2.5 years—who I live with, mind you—is completely bananas for college football—especially at his alma mater which has had a few good years but is not a school known for athletics. I can’t really describe his level of obsession except to say that I don’t know anyone who likes anything as much as he likes his team. Most of the time I find this kind of sweet and endearing. Especially because he is sort of a nerd about it, rather than a jock about it—he loves the stats and discussing “schemes.” Plus, I happen to really like football and tailgates and hotdogs and all that so it works.
But, my dad is turning 60 in a few weeks and my mom is planning a small dinner for just immediate family that, of course, happens to fall on the same day as the last home game of the season (we have season tickets). I’ve known this was coming for months and planted the seed ages ago but now that the reservation is made and we’re almost there I finally brought it up for realz and he is not happy. He hasn’t said whether he will go or not—in my opinion he has no choice—but I know he is bummed and slightly pissed and I can’t decide if he has any grounds for the pouting.
In the past, I’ve given him an out for other minor family get-togethers that have conflicted with games and I was a good sport when we postponed my birthday dinner by a week because he was so upset about a loss he didn’t feel like going out. But I really feel like this is different. It’s my dad and my family has been very good to him. I know my parents—who are really lovely and not usually the type to judge—will raise an eyebrow and look down at this.
So: am I wrong to take a stand or should I just let it go?
So, um, yeah. I have an answer to this. (BOY DO I EVER.) I have a feeling every other lady reading this will too.
But I thought it might be helpful to get a dude's perspective.
Here's what our very favorite dude-reader-of-ESB had to say:
Make a goal line stand on this, woman! Dad only has one 60th birthday while BF's team will have many more last games of the season. If he can't understand this he is being immature beyond measure. Also, it sounds like family is important to you and if you plan on spending more than 2.5 years with this guy he needs to understand that and show you your family is important to him too.
Rob S. Parham
-One Percent for Space-
p.s. esb, this guy sounds like an immature little boy that can't stay up late and watch his favorite tv show. Why would this even be a question if she ACTUALLY wants to marry this guy? Shit, I'm all weird about space and rocket launches but I'd never think about missing an important family event for one. I mean look at my damn signature. Dude needs to put on his bigboy pants.
Photo: Marie Claire Dutch, November 2011 via n &n