Relationship Lessons from Taylor & Travis

As a man who is a lifelong fan of the NFL, I have been here for every moment of the Taylor Swift/Travis Kelce romance. I have heard other men on our platforms call the coverage “exhausting” and I have seen comments on social media offering much more offensive opinions of the global icons.  

Not me. 

In fact, I want to see as much of this relationship as possible, not because they are so darn cute in every picture and video. I want to see more because of how incredibly mature and supportive the relationship already appears to be. In particular, Travis appears to have mastered a relationship standard that took me years to learn.   

Be A Hype Man, Not A Hero

Kim and I wrote a book about our marriage a few years ago called Everybody Fights…So, Why Not Get Better At It? It took quite a bit of research and counseling to turn our marriage from a good one into a great one. But once we learned better ways to communicate, we felt other couples could benefit as well. 

One of the most important things I learned before writing that book was that I am not supposed to be Kim’s hero. I am not her knight in shining armor. As much as I want to, I am not supposed to rescue her like a damsel in distress. Rather, my biggest role is to be her hype man. I am a witness to her story. Here’s an excerpt from our book: 

One of the essential roles—maybe the most essential role—we play for our partners is as an audience to their life stories. That is the core promise we make when we enter into the covenant of a long-term relationship: 

I will witness your story, I will listen as you grow and change and stretch. I will be a sensitive receptacle to your most precious narrative, the story of your life. I will care how it turns out.

Showing Up For Each Other

Have you noticed how incredible both of these megastars have been at doing this for each other? While Taylor doesn’t comment much about their relationship, her actions are deafening. She is a very active and loud participant at Kansas City Chiefs games.  She pounds the glass during touchdowns. She is incensed at bad calls by the ref. She shows real anxiety when the game is on the line. 

“To see the slow motion chest bumps, to see the high fives with Mom, to see how, you know, Chiefs kingdom was all excited that she was there — that s— was absolutely hysterical and it was definitely a game I’ll remember, that’s for damn sure,” said Travis in a recent interview about her presence. 

“I’m going to see him do what he loves, we’re showing up for each other, other people are there and we don’t care,” Taylor Swift said of Travis in a rare interview with TIME. “…we’re just proud of each other.” 

How We Should Treat The Person We Love 

On the other hand, Travis could not be a bigger hype man, giving her props not only for her talent but the way she navigates a world that is always watching. 

“She’s unbelievable… I’m not running away from any of it…. The scrutiny she gets, how much she has a magnifying glass on her, every single day, paparazzi outside her house, outside every restaurant she goes to, after every flight she gets off, and she’s just living, enjoying life,” he explained in an interview with The Wall Street Journal.

Travis Kelce is a future Hall of Famer working in arguably the most self-aggrandizing business there is, but he appears to be happiest when touting the woman he appears to love. I know it’s not a picture of him holding hands, or a video of them stealing a kiss offstage, but the way they treat each other is something the world needs to see.  

Because it’s how we all should be to the person we love.