Dear Devil’s Advocate, My girlfriend always hates March because I get all into March Madness and just watch the NCAA Basketball Tournament.
She says that I ignore her. So, this year I encouraged her to fill out her own bracket and have a friendly competition with me. It started out great. We were having fun watching the games together. The only problem is that now she is beating me!
She has more teams correct in her bracket than I have in mine and she keeps holding it over my head. It’s starting to get annoying and I wish I had never tried to share my love of March Madness with her. What should I do? Sincerely, Miffed Matthew
Dear Matthew, Are you telling me that your girlfriend, who knows next to nothing about sports, is beating you in the NCAA Tournament bracket competition? That’s ludicrous. It is unbelievable. One might call it madness, perhaps.
It probably makes you feel like less of a man. You probably feel as if she is invading your private sanctuary.
You might even feel insulted by the fact that this girl can just waltz right up and be better at something that you have been doing your whole life.
So, what should you do? You should do the exact same thing to her.
Figure out what her favorite thing to do in the world is, and then do it yourself, except better. See how she likes it. It should sound like this:
“Oh, you went shopping today and got a great deal on a designer purse? Yeah, well guess what, I went shopping today and got an even better deal on a pair of shoes!”
The downside is that you will have to do some girly stuff, but the upside is that she gets a taste of her own medicine. Sometimes you must make some sacrifices in order to get your point across.
Of course, this whole plan does have the potential to backfire.
She might be all happy and excited that you like to do girly stuff. If that happens, then she will insist that the two of you do stuff together every weekend.
So, maybe you should just do that. Be happy that she is starting to like watching games with you, even if she does have a better bracket than you.
Maybe you can make it a routine thing. Consider yourself lucky that you have such a cool girlfriend. Sincerely,
Devil’s Advocate Dear Devil’s Advocate,
I saw Frank Warren talk about his PostSecret project the other day on campus and it inspired me to come clean with some secrets about myself to my boyfriend. My secret is I cheated on him almost a year ago.
It was just a one-time thing and hasn’t happened since.
I figured my honesty might bring us closer together, but it didn’t. He broke up with me on the spot.
Now I am alone and sad. I thought telling the secret would be like getting a weight lifted off my shoulders, but it wasn’t. It just hurt both me and him.
Do you think I did the right thing? And do you think there is anything I can do to win him back? Sincerely, Secretless Shana
Dear Shana, I love PostSecret. There is something nice about reading other people’s deepest secrets. It always makes me think to myself, “Okay, well at least my life isn’t sad enough that I have to anonymously tell millions of strangers my inner most regrets in order to feel better about myself.”
Now, on to your questions. Do I think you did the right thing? No. The right thing would have been to not cheat on him.
The right thing would have been to tell him the truth immediately after it happened. The right thing would have been to not lie to him for a year. You messed up big time.
Can you win him back? I doubt it. He might come back to you and be in a relationship again, but it won’t be the same.
No matter how much time passes, there will always be a seed of doubt in his mind. This probably is not what you want to hear, but it is probably better for both of you just to move on with your lives.
But I have a more important piece of advice for you, right now. If you are still feeling sad and alone, remember that there is always someone who has it worse than you.
There are people with real problems out there: cancer, war, addiction, and homelessness. Be glad you don’t have to deal with those.
You made you bed, now you must lie in it.
Sincerely, Devil’s Advocate