I love sports. I tend to pay more attention to college and pro football, college basketball, and NASCAR racing. I keep up with most of the other sports and try to at least stay informed enough to be able to know what is going on in the sports world. My wife would assure you that I am an avid sports watcher, but if you didn’t know me you might have a hard time knowing it. I typically don’t yell out or scream over a particular play. I don’t get too excited over a touchdown or a bonehead play. I am the type of sports fan that really appreciates the intricacies of a sport and I appreciate some of the subtle nuances that others may not see. I also will tend to be able to explain what foul was called and why pretty well. Frankly, my wife would say that the only way she knows I am really into a game physically is that I will tense up my thighs when I want the defense to strengthen up. I played linebacker in football and so I tend to watch plays with that kind of eye.

So, with all of the basketball games of the NCAA tournament on right now, I started thinking about what kind of fans are we? The biggest type of fan we see in our part of the country is the diehard college sports fan. In our state there are two major universities and you tend to either be a fan of one or the other. But within that group I have noticed two different types of fans. One is the ardent supporter that is going to support their teams in good times and bad. They will tend to see things in an optimistic or pessimistic way. The optimistic fan will hope that their team is going to win no matter how many chips are stacked against them.

The pessimistic fan is going to support their team but is going to be worried about everything that could potentially stop their progress. They can be characterized as worriers and will follow the rule that anything that could possibly go wrong will.

Now the other type of fan is one that I have witnessed lately. They are strong supporters of their team as well. The thing I have noticed about them, though, is how they get pleasure from following their team. This type of fan will look to inflict some verbal damage to their rival at any given opportunity. They probably do not even recognize it, but they will go out of their way to lash out a little verbal flesh wound to someone they know. They seem to do this to enjoy the reaction they can stir up and this seems to give them pleasure. After you are around this person awhile, you see that they may view being a fan a bit more as hate for their rival than enjoying being a fan of their own team. It seems that they have lost perspective in what sportsmanship truly is about.

So, why I am going on about this? Well, my real question is, “What kind of fan are you to your wife?”

Are you the positive diehard fan of your wife? Do you look for ways to support her in good times and bad? Do you look to let her know that you love her daily and show her affection? Do you go out of your way to see the positive traits that your wife exhibits and overlook her flaws? Hopefully, you are in this category.

Or are you the pessimistic fan of your wife? Do you worry about everything your wife does? Do you spend your time thinking about how everything your wife does is going to turn out wrong? Do you spend a lot of time hung up on any bad traits and let those overshadow her good qualities? This one is also common and easy to let our guard down and move toward.

I hope you are not in this last category. Have you decided that your wife is your rival?  Do you try to find ways to hurt your wife’s spirit? Do you look for ways to criticize her dreams and her desires? Do you think that your words can control your wife so that you can win your game? Can you see something positive about your wife staring you right in the eye and seem to find a way to derail it?

Now, I purposefully held off until now to mention my final fan. This fan has already given up on their team. They have decided that putting in the effort to support their team is hopeless. They have stopped really trying to look for the positive or the negative. In fact, they could probably be defined as giving up on their team. They have stopped caring. Have you decided that showing your wife that you appreciate and love her is not worth the effort? Have you become a huge wall in allowing any open communication in your marriage? I hope you are not in this category as a fan of your wife. If you are, please evaluate yourself immediately. It is never too late to get back in the stands. It will take you making the commitment to be the positive diehard fan of your wife, though. I think you will find that once you start leading the cheers again your wife will be your supporter as well.