Dear Ann Cannon • I just found out that a guy I’ve been dating is married, a fact HE NEGLECTED TO MENTION. I’m so angry I could explode. I feel played and ripped off and betrayed and very, very stupid. Tell me, Ann Cannon, what should I do?!
Dear Furious • Um, stop dating him? That might be a good first step…
I’m truly sorry you’ve had to go through this experience. The same thing happened to a college roommate of mine. While I don’t necessarily recommend revenge, I do love what she did when she found out her new boyfriend had — you know — A WIFE. She asked him to take her to the most expensive restaurant in town. Which he did. She then proceeded to order pretty much one of everything, especially if plenty of dollar signs were involved. Her date grew whiter and whiter as the evening progressed, which was just fine by her. Finally, when the server appeared with the check, my roommate stood up, told him he might have wanted to mention he had a wife at home before asking her on a date, and then strutted out of the restaurant where a friend was waiting for her in a getaway car.
As I said before, I’m not advocating revenge. But I do recommend that you be especially kind to yourself for the next little while and don’t forget that there are still plenty of (cliché alert!) good fish in the sea. Seriously. Wishing you the very best.
Dear Ann Cannon • My husband is one of the coaches of our son’s little league baseball team. I appreciate the fact that he’s donating his time to do this, but here’s the problem: He doesn’t play our son enough. I know that I sound biased, but the truth is that our son is a really good athlete. When I asked (confronted, actually) my husband about it, he said he doesn’t want to be accused of favoritism. How can I convince him that he’s being unfair to his own son?
— Baseball Momma
Dear Baseball Momma • May I just say that I am very familiar with this territory of which you speak …
OK. In general, I think that if parents have a problem with a coach, they should speak directly to the coach instead of grousing to each other — or worse, to their kid. Coach-bashing may make disgruntled parents feel better in the moment, but it isn’t super productive and, in fact, it may actually be counterproductive. Parental negativity can be toxic to both individual players and to a team as a whole.
When speaking with a coach, speak respectfully. Ask why your child isn’t playing more and what she or he can do to get more time on the field or court. Be sure you really want to hear the answer. Remember that most coaches think WINNING is a good idea, and they’re (usually) making decisions about who plays with that goal in mind.
Your situation, of course, is a little different. I have to say I respect your husband for wanting to do right by other people’s children. It’s frustrating, however, when you feel like your own flesh and blood is being shortchanged. Been there. Done that.
I doubt you’ll be able to change your husband’s mind, frankly, but don’t be afraid to keep expressing your opinion … out of your son’s earshot. And who knows? Maybe you can convince one of the other coaches to see your point of view.
My final piece of advice: Don’t make this a bigger deal between you and your husband than it should be.