It's no secret that I love wrestling. I reference it all the time and I write about it on the side. It's my thing, but there was once a time when I thought I would never watch wrestling again and that's when Chris Benoit killed his family and himself.
My girlfriend at the time was pregnant with my child that I was completely unprepared for and our relationship was a bit... let's say rocky. My irresponsibility combined with her pregnancy brain and worries about the future combined with the general instability of our relationship in general had us on the rocks. Things weren't really looking good, but we were trying to make it work. For the kid maybe or ourselves or more likely because not trying and dealing with it seemed so damn horrible. We set up a date where we'd get dinner and she'd let me watch Raw and we'd just hang out. Try to have fun, try to have a good time, try to talk.
Before she came over I went online and got a message from my friend Graeme that Chris Benoit was dead and so was his family. I was in shock. This was one of my absolute favorite wrestlers and he was dead. Was he murdered? Was it a gas leak? I felt really bad. Our plans would have to change. I didn't want to eat. I was sad that this wrestler dude who had been apart of my life every week for nearly ten years was gone. Graeme, another guy Brando and I chatted online for hours as the news slowly trickled in. We watched the Raw that was a tribute to him and that slowly became the worst idea ever as before it was over the truth came out: Benoit murdered his family and then killed himself. He was the worst person ever. I felt horrible. I went from sad to depressed to sad and depressed that I was sad and depressed over a murderer. I couldn't experience joy. I jut felt sick to my stomach and I hated everything about life and this world and the way things are. This, as you can imagine, did not sit very well with the mother of my future child. She couldn't understand how I could be so upset about someone I didn't even know. She wanted me to pay attention to her and be attentive and not be so caught up in this fake world. Wrestling was on TV, but she was right there and I couldn't see what was happening right in front of my face. She didn't get it and that night after one of my favorite wrestlers of all time murdered his family and himself, we broke up. A bad night made worse.
After that I couldn't watch wrestling for a long time. It was a constant reminder of those bad memories and it wasn't fun for me anymore. I stopped playing wrestling games, I stopped reading news and results, got rid of my shirts, got rid of my books and I quit watching. Wrestling was over for me because some guy ruined it.
I'm not writing this because I want to compare Ryan Braun to Chris Benoit (or Aaron Hernandez) because I am a rational human being that can tell the difference between breaking a sport's rules and murdering people, but I can't help but to feel similar feelings. Continue reading →