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How To Be Her Friend When She’s Married To The Game

How To Be Her Friend When She’s Married To The Game

Life is tricky as a football wife when it comes to finding real friends. When you arrive in a new city your husband is a savior and everyone wants to be your friend. Have a few bad games or a bad season and you will wish you could just go home and crawl into your childhood bed and have your dad bring you ice cream (or wine) all day until it ends!

Plenty of people want to know you so they can know you’re Coach, but where it gets tough is making friends you can lean on, trust, and want to spend time with when you know your time is limited. As we arrive in these different cities and start to make them home we start navigating through who is real who isn’t, who has interests like us and who doesn’t, who has our values and who is in a crowd we prefer not to be associated with.

This got me thinking about my non-football friends (meaning non staff or staff wives) from each move and what makes them great.

So, here are 11 ways to be a good non-football friend:

  • Don’t be clingy. Football wives are football wives for a reason, we LOVE being independent and free. We wouldn’t have married men who work over 100 hours a week if we wanted to be around someone all the time!
  • We are going to vomit football all day, especially in season. We don’t know we are even doing it! How you talk about your job, kids, families, is how we talk about football. All our stories will involve football. We won’t tell you anything important, but we will drift off into “I remember when we went to this game in SD and it was so cold…” it really is our life and completely engulfs us.
  • Stop over analyzing our Social Media. We do get access to things people outside the program don’t and we like to share it so you can be a part of it. We even say things that are meant to make you laugh and smile. Don’t assume our lightheartedness means Coach isn’t serious about his profession. We have to laugh and smile to live such a stressful lifestyle. Use our posts as a way to feel involved not a reason to tear us down.
  • What Coach tells his wife stays with only her, so please do not ask for inside scoop on players, recruits, the staff, etc.. Football is a small circle of trust and we won’t break it.
  • Please do not befriend me to get closer to the single coach’s, I can sniff that out like my dog can peanut butter and we will not be friends
  • Tailgate with us, or invite us to yours! We love tailgating and sporting our colors and cheering along side friendly fans!
  • Do not continue rumors about our husbands being fired. Those rumors are hard enough.
  • Invite us to non-football functions. Golf leagues, wine nights, movies! We want to do normal things with people.
  • But please do not have your feelings hurt when August – Season End we say no to those same events because anything that interferes with football we will turn down. It is not that we don’t appreciate or love the offers, but we are in our given cities for football. It is our #1 girlfriend.
  • Do not introduce us as “Coach’s Wife” to your friends. If it is a football function or a tailgate hell yea slap that label on. If it is a program supporter use it all you want. Anyway we can help the program we will. However if you are being our friend just for friendship sake our first names will do.
  • What happens in our home stays in our home, being our friend is like being friends with Vegas (for reasons outside of being our friend is like hitting the friend jackpot!)!  We won’t tell you anything we aren’t supposed to, but you might be at the house when Coach walks in mad after a game or practice, or losing a recruit…all of this we are trusting you to keep between us. The privacy of our home is just that, we invite you in because we trust you.
  • We are natural cheerleaders and burst with pride about our husbands. Our Facebook, Twitter, Insta are going to be filled with football 24/7. We are a part of his story, we’re part of the program, and we’ve stood by his side through things many people would give up over. He is the greatest thing since sliced (gluten free) bread to us. So jump on board or unfollow us, we won’t be offended either way!

So to the friends who have nailed this list, friends we were with before football and friends we have met along the way, I love you. Thanks for not making it goodbye when we move on, but “See ya soon”, staying in touch more than in season, and more importantly just wondering how we are doing!

In the words of Coach’s favorite band “Don’t ask me no questions and I won’t tell you no lies. So, don’t ask me about my business and I won’t tell you goodbye.” -Lynyrd Skynyrd


Theresa Lemke Theresa Lemke earned her degree in Organizational Communications, as well as met her husband Dan, at Western Michigan University. Dan was a member of the Bronco Football team, which was her introduction to the world of athletics. They married in 2006, and started their journey in coaching college football. Theresa held a successful sales career until 2011 when she decided to change career paths and begin her career in Higher Education. She is currently the Service Learning Coordinator at Northwestern Oklahoma State University, where her husband is the Defensive Coordinator. They have two dogs, Roxi, a Boxer (8), and Rosebud, an English Bulldog (2). Outside of volunteering and their dogs, Theresa's interests are in fitness, living a clean lifestyle, renovating their fixer upper, and managing her blog: lifeasafootballwife.wordpress.com.