Big Boy Can't Hack It

A woman seeks advice on how to handle her boyfriend's ego.

What Would Debbie Do?

Girls Rule and Boys Drool

Dear Debbie,

I think my boyfriend is being really pissy over something I didn’t think was a big deal. We were talking the other day about sports we no longer take part in, but used to enjoy, and I mentioned that I used to do judo in college and was pretty good, even though I only received a beginner’s yellow belt.

He thought this was hilarious because I’m tall and blond and weigh around 125lbs, and I guess he didn’t think that a pretty girl could fight her way out of a paper bag, much less do a martial art.

So when he got done laughing at me (he really was laughing) I challenged him to a wrestling match. Long story short, I used some timely leg sweeps and wrist throws to send him to the floor a few times, and after a while he got so tired out that his strength advantage was gone, and I was able to pin him.

Well, I figured he would have learned his lesson, but he’s totally bent out of shape about it…he’s been pouty and obnoxious ever since the match and keeps challenging me to a rematch, saying I got lucky, and that he wasn’t trying hard…all this stuff to protect his macho ego.

So what do I do? Give him a rematch and let him win? (He would totally rub it in my face and say things like “I told you women can’t fight”). Or agree to a rematch and try my best again, risking another blow to his ego if he loses? Or just refuse and tell him to deal with it? (I’ve tried that last option and he just won’t let it go).

Debbie–have you ever beaten a guy at something physical and had him react this way?
Please advise!


Dear Jennie,

I think you’ve found yourself in an interesting predicament.

For starters, I don’t think the issue is that you “took him down.” I think the issue is that this guy doesn’t like for you to win. It appears that his ego is so big, he can’t see past the fact that he’s been outmaneuvered, and outsmarted. His insistence on then “taking YOU down” (how absurd is that?) to prove his machismo is even MORE disturbing, considering this is a physical endeavor, and clearly, his adrenaline is up and you could be hurt.

This whole business of “letting him win” to save his ego is hogwash. If a man cannot accept defeat-in any way-he is no gentleman. And truly, doesn’t this speak volumes about his personality, his character, and his ego?

This incident feels like a precursor to more battles in the future. I say “tell him to deal with it.” If he can’t, therefore, I say, “tell him to take a hike.”

That’s what I would do…


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