By Danielle Adinolfi, MFT
This article was originally published on PhiladelphiaMFT.com. Be sure to check out their site for professional relationship and sex advice.
One of the key elements of a strong relationship is bonding over shared hobbies, and fantasy football is one of the most widely played games amongst men in the United States. According to the FSTA, 25.8 million people played fantasy football in 2012 and that number is going up every year. While men are gearing up for the beginning of what they hope to be a winning season for their team, 80% of women are being left out of what may be a great bonding opportunity for them and their significant other.
It seems women are already picking up on this secret. The FTSA notes that in 2012, 20% of the population playing fantasy football were women, an 8% increase from the year before.
Not sure where to start? Ask your partner! He will likely enjoy that you are taking an interest in knowing more about football and will not have a problem explaining the details. You can spend Sundays (or Monday and Thursday nights) watching games together and learning about the players. After doing this for a season, you will have a pretty good grasp on the game and the players, and you will have spent 22 weeks of quality bonding time with your partner.
Next, you will need to join a league together (don’t worry; you won’t need to get to this step until next summer so you have plenty of time to do so). Once you find one, you can spend some time together preparing for your season by reading fantasy football draft advice online (websites like ESPN.com and NFL.com will have sections specifically designated to fantasy football) and discussing draft strategy with each other. Your draft will likely occur in late August, and then your fantasy football season will begin with the start of the NFL regular season.
Engaging in a shared activity that is special to your partner will increase his self-worth because you are putting value on an activity that he enjoys. And having a joint hobby that spurs competition will rev up your relationship. Relationship energy is essential to a strong bond, and fantasy football is a great way to renew your relationship energy every year.
Still think fantasy football isn’t for you? Than read this topic of the week from 2012 where I discuss how to keep football from overrunning your relationship.
Danielle Adinolfi, MFT is a practicing therapist in Philadelphia. She received her Master’s Degree in Couple and Family Therapy from Thomas Jefferson University with a concentration in Sex Therapy. Her areas of expertise include sexual trauma, anxiety, pre-marital counseling and systemic issues. Keep up with her here.