Things NOT to Say to a Coach’s Wife

Hey sports fans! We’re transitioning seasons from fall to winter sports which has recently reminded me of all the hard conversations post season brings. I did a quick poll with confirmed coaches’ wives around the country and have compiled a list of the most commonly asked questions we really wish we didn’t have to answer. I’m also going to explain why NOT asking these things will show your favorite coach’s wife how much you care.

Post Season

  • Are you happy the season is finally over?
  • Weren’t you supposed to have a better season this year?
  • How is your husband doing dealing with all the losses this year?

In the few days where there is little going on with coaching we aren’t trying to dwell on the season. We’re all adjusting to a new routine and enjoying a few more dates, but we aren’t happy the season is over. A short season means we didn’t win as many games as we could have and that is always disappointing.

Post seasons are filled with weight room workouts, individual coaching, recruiting, and a lot of film work. High school coaches are helping their upperclassmen connect with college opportunities. It’s also filled with a lot of meetings about how to improve.

  • Well, you can’t win them all!
  • What’s the big deal? It’s just a game.

These two statements may be the most frustrating of all for coaches’ wives. First of all, you CAN win them all when you have an undefeated season.  ? More than that, we KNOW that it’s extremely hard to win consistently year after year, which is why statements like “It’s just a game” or “You can’t win them all” are ones we just don’t know how to answer well.

Football (or soccer, basketball or baseball) IS a game, but it’s also an avenue to develop characteristics such as perseverance and integrity under pressure. Coaches help players learn how to work on teams and lead teammates. So, it is a big deal, win or lose.

Jobs and Moving

  • Are you guys moving?
  • Are you guys staying?
  • Where is your husband applying?
  • Did you see X job is open? Is he going to try for that one?
  • I hope you guys stay.
  • I hope they fire X coach, he sucks.

Please don’t talk to us about coaches getting fired and hired. First, we aren’t okay with you celebrating a coach losing his job. We know. Believe me, we know what is happening. But while you may believe that your team is better off with a new coach coming in, we’re thinking about the previous coach’s family and all the unknown they are now dealing with regarding moving. We’re also hoping that when our time comes people will speak kindly about us.

There are thousands of coaches that are applying for hundreds of jobs. Just because a coach has a winning record or a lot of experience on his resume doesn’t automatically mean he will get a job. The best way you can support a coaching family through the months where most coaches are being hired and fired is to NOT talk about jobs.

Are we moving? I don’t know. Are we staying? I don’t know. Coaching job announcements are going to be made publicly at some point, true friends of coaches’ wives don’t demand to know the inside scoop.

Free Time

  • Are you glad to have your husband back?
  • What are you doing with all your free time?
  • It must be nice to have the summer off!
  • Why do you let him work all the time?

We are always happy to have more time with our husbands, but there is no free time. There are times where there is less going on, but there is always something going on because our husbands work demanding jobs they choose to do, we don’t let them do anything just as they don’t let us do things.

The Future

  • Are you guys going to be any good next year?
  • Are you going to run a different Offense/Defense?
  • Are you going to do things like that NFL team?

Ok, so first of all, our husbands are the coaches, not us. And while it’s true we’ve likely watched our fair share of games and film, we have zero input into what happens with the X’s and O’s. So, the honest answer is always “I have no idea”.

More than that, it’s important to remember that coaches have to choose game plans that their teams are most likely to execute. There is a reason why NFL teams have more complicated plays. They are professional athletes who play football for a living. They are faster, stronger, and much more experienced than our 14-year-old high school freshmen!

Just General None of your Business Stuff

  • Are you going to try to get pregnant now that your husband is around more?
  • How much does your husband make anyway?

In all fairness, these questions are one you might ask any wife. They aren’t specific to coaches, but if they aren’t ones you would ask of anyone one else, don’t ask a coach’s wife. Our lives have a lot of public aspects. It seems reasonable that we would want to keep our family planning and finances to ourselves doesn’t it?

So, there you have it sports fans! Let’s embrace the post season together by NOT asking these questions.