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Help - I've Bruised My Boyfriend's Ego!

Please help! This will seem ridiculous but i'm having a real problem w/my BF's ego. A few weeks ago I finished taking beginner level judo classes and earned my yellow belt. I really enjoyed the classes and found i was pretty good at it, even though I'm not really muscular (I'm tall, 5'9", but slender, and weigh about 125lbs) I'm a pretty girly-looking girl..i wear my hair long and like dresses, etc., and I am considered a "looker." Anyway, b/c of all this,my BF didn't take my classes very seriously and when I told him i got my yellow belt he just laughed a lot and said stuff like "that's so cute" and other condescending stuff. Now I probably should have just ignored him but he made me really mad and so w/out really thinking about it I challenged him to a wrestling match. We're the same height but he has at least 40lbs on me, and he didn't want to do it at first but I said 'are you afraid of losing to a girl?' and he was like, "OK, let me teach you a lesson'. So we moved some firniture out of the way and we got going and he didn't try very hard at first, b/c he just didn't think he'd have to! But then i caught him w/a leg sweep and he went down on the floor, and I could see his face get all red and when he got back up he started trying really hard to beat me. Well, long story short, I kept using throws and leg sweeps to send him to the floor, and waited til he got really tired, and then when i could tell his strength was running out,and he was having trouble catching his breath, I used some ground techniques to keep him down on the floor and after a fairly long struggle, I pinned him! So i had a little laugh at his expense and said "I hope you learned YOUR lesson", and kind of figured i'd made my point and that would be the end of it....but he couldn't let it go, and kept after me for a rematch, saying "I got lucky", last week I finally said "OK" to one more match b/c he wouldn't stop asking, and, yes, I beat him again. Now he's TOTALLY bent out of shape and keeps trying for another match to prove he can beat me and I need help b/c I'm sick of his attitude! Was I wrong to defeat him? Should I just fake it and let him win? Have any other girls out there defeated a guy at something physical and gone thru this?? I keep telling i beat him b/c I know judo and he doesn't but he's still pissed and thinks he can beat me just b/c i'm a "pretty girl". (Also, when I suggested we take classes together so he could compete w/me better, he said "I don't need to know judo to beat a girl!" )I know, it sounds like he's a total ass, but he was NEVER like this until I beat him at wrestling! What should I do???


Sophie's advice

Oh boy - you've opened a can of worms haven't you? I think it's common knowledge that no man wants to be beaten up by a girl, let alone his
girlfriend. Call it ego, call it societal conditioning, call it anything you want, but we all know this. So the question is, why was it so important for you to prove that you could take your boyfriend down? You mentioned he was being condescending and not taking your classes seriously, so your response was to wrestle him into taking you seriously? It probably felt really good at the time and you were not wrong to beat him, but you were both wrong for getting into the wrestling match to begin with. And doubly wrong for doing it again! Your boyfriend, like almost all males, has part of his ego tied up in his strength, so you're going to have to find a subtle way to make him feel strong again. You also need to have an honest talk about why this whole thing started in the first place, (because you felt patronized, or not taken seriously.)

Mark's advice

Hey Karen;
First of all, you don't spell your boyfriend, "BF". You spell it, "D.I.C.K." Come on, say it with me. "My boyfriend is a dick." Now we both feel better. There aren't that many guys out there anymore,
who are that male chauvinist. Talk about the dark ages. I took judo, karate, high school wrestling and boxing, and if some girl were able to beat me at any one of them, then good for her. I had girls in my boxing, karate and judo classes and I'm sure a couple of them could have taken a chunk out of me. (I was hoping for a couple of girls on my wrestling
team, but that remained an unfulfilled fantasy). One thing your dic*..sorry, your boyfriend is going to have to learn, is that, he's not going to be better than you at everything. There are things you will be
better at, and the more things you try and practice at, the more things you'll be better at than him. (and we're not talking cooking and pole dancing). No one is less of a man, just cause their girlfriend can
beat them at something physical. It only means the girlfriend practiced and worked harder at it. If he can't handle something as unimportant as you being able to beat him in a wrestling match, what's he going to be like if you marry the guy, and maybe get a better job or make more money than him? Maybe you need to find someone who can take losing to a girl like a man.

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what's the problem? Keep kicking his ass! :-) he TOTALLY asked for it, and you just educated him that martial arts evens the playing field between men & women. I got into light weight training some time ago and even tho' I'm also a skinny and feminine looking girl I got seriously toned and one day i beat my BF arm wrestling. he was totally shocked and looked like he might start crying but he got over it & now he thinks my strength is sexy!

suzie Q

I'm a guy who took some martial arts when I was younger. There were a number of black belt women in the class who were quite good. I don't remember any of the guys being negative about it, or taking it as an affront to their manhood, that these women were better than us. That said, I've wrestled around with some girlfriends, and they've mostly preferred my being stronger, so I can see how ego can be involved in a relationship, where it does not exist amongst colleagues. On the surface, it might seem that he only needs to take some lessons too, so that he can hold his own against you, to regain his ego, but there's some disturbing aspects to your story that show this may have been an opportune moment, to discover some deeper personality flaws in him, before you've wasted more time on him.