1. The amount of time in your life that it takes up.
Could you imagine the amount of books you could’ve read instead of watching all 162 Red Sox games last year? Okay, you probably wouldn’t have read too much, but that’s a lot of time to keep up with those pesky Kardashians.
2. Having to go into a media blackout.
You can’t bare to constantly relive it, so you stay away from TV, internet and all social media after a terrible loss. Not soon after, though, it begins to feel like you’re not even a part of the world anymore. Think about it, if Kanye goes on a Twitter rant and you’re not there for it, did it really happen?
3. The damage to your mental health.
There are many studies that show the negative effects that extreme fandom has on your health—especially your mental health. It’s easy to believe these studies when you consider what rational person would sign up for such a roller coaster of emotions (sociopaths).
4. The highest cost of fandom: Money.
No passion costs more money. You like scrapbooking? Awesome—$20 should be enough to cover you for a couple years. Being a sports fan is so expensive, it’s probably not even possible to put a number on it. It’s not just the cost of attending games or being suited up in your team’s gear, but consider all the smaller purchases that add up. Whether it’s the $30 you spent on food or beer at Buffalo Wild Wings twice a week, or the extra cable costs to get the best sports packages. When having a significant other is cheaper than being a sports fan, there is a problem.
5. The excruciating pain of loss.
How do these athletes handle these losses so well? Aaron Rodgers seemed so chill after a historically brutal loss to the Seahawks. Meanwhile, not one person in Wisconsin slept that night, not even the babies. It almost seems like before the players leave the stadiums the Men in Black guys are waiting for them with their memory wipe device.
6. Having absolutely no control over anything.
Put yourself in the mindset of a Cleveland Browns fan. I know it’s a scary thought, but go with me. You’ve never won a Super Bowl, your team is stolen from you, and you’ve had 22 starting quarterbacks since your team returned in 1999. That is about as miserable an existence that you could have. The most frustrating part of all of it is that you had nothing to do with any of it. You didn’t draft Tim Couch or Brady Quinn or Colt McCoy or Brandon Weeden or—well you get the point. The only recourse you ever had was to change teams, and that isn’t an option for real fans.
7. Random sports facts take up too much brain space.
Over the years of your fandom you’ve collected quite an eclectic assortment of sports knowledge. This is all fine and well until you run out of space for the actual important stuff. Maybe you recently forgot your Mom’s birthday, but doesn’t anyone care that you know the names and colleges of the six quarterbacks drafted ahead of Tom Brady? Sorry Mr. Tax Man, I might have forgotten to send my taxes in, would it help if I told you how many career receptions Chad Ochocinco had?
8. The challenge of recording a game and avoiding the score.
We’ve all been through this excruciatingly tough process. Your team has a huge game, but you have some monumental thing going on. I stress monumental because something trivial like work doesn’t count because you can easily solve that by suddenly developing a cough. It could be a wedding or funeral, no matter what it is it’s unavoidable. Your goal is to record the game and make it home without knowing what happens. What sounds easy enough soon turns into a nightmare. You worry any time your phone vibrates that it’s someone mentioning the game, or any stranger that you’re stuck in conversation might casually blurt out a spoiler. After hours of avoiding the minefields you make it home only to sit through your team get destroyed. The loss stings that much more after all that hard work.
9. Having to defend your fandom.
If you live in the same city or state of your favorite team, count yourself lucky, because you don’t have to constantly be ready to defend your allegiances. For people living away from their teams then you’re all too familiar with the line of questioning that you’re constantly harassed with. “Oh you’re a Patriots fan? When did that start—the day they won a Super Bowl?” You’re immediately sent in defense mode where you start ranting about how you were raised there and the years of suffering that you dealt with before the years of success. As true fans, we shouldn’t be mad at these people, but rather the bandwagon fans that are the reason we have to deal with such demeaning assumptions.
10. The negative impact on your relationships.
No people probably have more issues in their relationships than sports fans. The fandom affects all relationships from friends to significant others. With friends the bond is tested with new arguments arising constantly. The real relationship put into jeopardy though is that with as significant other. For example let’s look at what college football and the NFL have done to drive a wedge in these relationships. Rightfully so women would like to every now and then go out with their man. This becomes tough to accomplish when there is football on every single day during the fall and winter. The wife probably does deserve better though if you won’t go to the movies with her on a Tuesday night because there is a game between Kent State and Miami of Ohio.
11. Seeing a game live is overrated.
The experience of going to a concert can’t be duplicated. There is just nothing like singing your favorite song along with the artist and thousands of fellow fans all at the same time. Now imagine instead of being at a concert you’re just at home watching it on TV. Sounds miserable, doesn’t it? When it comes to sports unfortunately now due to rising costs and the creation of HD viewing it’s the opposite of going to a concert. Unless you’ve got an unlimited supply of money and get to sit court side then there is no reason other than sentimentality to go to a game live. Instead you’re much better off just kicking back on your recliner and watching the game from home.
12. Too much stress to handle.
Watching a casual sports fan watch a game is an amazing experience. They just look so relaxed as they have their feet up with a beer in one hand and a hot wing in the other. Big moments come and go yet you couldn’t tell by looking at them. Meanwhile you know if someone was watching you watch your favorite team play that an ambulance would surely be called. With every pitch or pass your emotions rise and fall. Speaking from experience it gets so bad that you can’t even enjoy the game. My team is playing in the upcoming Super Bowl and I can guarantee that I won’t be able to enjoy a second of it unless somehow my team is up 65-0.
13. The constant reminder about your missed chance at glory.
That could’ve been you out there is what you tell yourself as you watch LeBron throwing down a vicious dunk. You were so close to being on the path of greatness after that 9 point game you had freshman year of high school. If only you had more muscle, height, talent, coordination and less whiteness.