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Ask MetalGF: When New Parents Both Wanna Go to the Show

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Please send real questions to askmetalgf AT metalsucks DOT net. I’m serious and I really want to help you. You can also follow me on Twitter!

Dear Metal Wife-
I know you’re not a metal fan at heart, so I hope you can still give me some good advice. My husband and I met through our passion for metal. Now we have a daughter, Gigi who’s two. Here’s the problem: when a band we both like comes to Boston, we fight about who gets to go — and it grows into an even bigger fight about other things. We can’t really afford the price of a babysitter and the tickets more than once a year, and so I’ve basically stopped trying to go out to hear music because it’s not worth the discussion and disappointment. I hate that the thing that brought us together is now our point of contention. And now I just found out that Whitechapel is coming to town — and I really want to go, but I know he will too! What is fair? How should I approach this with him?
Signed,
Metalmom!

UG Metalmom I FEEL YOUR PAIN. Being a metal mom isn’t all Slayer onesies and teaching your kid about the ups and downs Cannibal Corpse’s career! Yours is a very annoying problem, and as the mother of a young child myself, I can relate. Kids can be a real buzzkill when it comes to going out at the same time as your partner, drinking heavily, staying out late, etc. They basically ruin these things, at least for now.

I have a couple of suggestions. One is a very straight forward “every other” system! For every show you go to, your husband goes to one, too! This should be the default mode so that you don’t have to discuss and figure it out each and every time. He went to a show last time? Now it’s your turn, plain and simple. A lot of the time, women especially will martyr it up and guilt trip themselves into thinking they should always be the default one to stay home, and that just isn’t the case. Of course, the every other system won’t work 100% of the time, but it is a good place to start, and it sets a nice precedent of fairness and takes out a lot of the guess work of who “should” go and why. I find if I can have a really fun night out every week or two, I am a better mom because I am happy. It really goes a long way.

In terms of going to shows together, I have a few suggestions: one is FRIENDS. We have asked our friends (each one no more than once) to sit for us. We buy them dinner, leave them with the Netflix password and a comfortable couch and they seem fine and happy for a few hours. It is a favor, of course, but if you ask each friend like once a year and give them a free dinner, it’s not such a big deal. Parents need help and parents need fun and you have to figure out ways to make it work and be creative. Sometimes, we will leave the video monitor with our upstairs neighbor and leave the house together for a bit! Is this legal? We are unsure! But we are out at night, and that is what matters! Vince and I often talk about how if we KNOW our baby is asleep safely in the crib and won’t be awake for at least ten hours, why can’t we leave and, like, go out and get ice cream? It seems unfair. America and its dumb rules!!

Another free babysitting source is your family. You gave your parents grandchildren, and now they owe you big time! If you spread out asking people, no one will feel put out.

Another thing a friend of mine does is, she goes out after her baby is in bed and pays an 8th grader a very low rate to sit on her couch and watch tv. Since metal shows are most definitely after bedtime, finding a young whippersnapper looking to make some dough on the side might work well for you, and their price point tends to be much more reasonable. Young teens don’t care where they are as long as there is a wifi connection.

It really does take a village, and raising your child with just your partner ALL OF THE TIME is just a lot. If you need help, ask for it.

Dear MetalGF,
I work for a music distribution company that recently merged with a larger company that owns a metal label. We had a work get-together and I saw this guy who I think is pretty hot: he’s got long hair, tattoos, and wears metal T-shirts. My guess is he’s pretty into metal. I am more of a folksy girl and I really don’t know how to approach this guy, especially because we are in different offices. Do you have any suggestions for me on how I can get close, or maybe some conversation topic somehow work related where I can email him? P.S. someone at work suggested this column for me otherwise I wouldn’t of even known about this website…
Best,
Nonmetal Maiden

I remember when my BFF (also a non-metal person) and I started attending metal events, which we did A LOT, we always said to people, “Too bad about Isis breaking up” because Vince had once mentioned that a band called Isis broke up. We thought this was HILARIOUS, and we would drunkenly go up to people and say this and then just pause… and GUESS WHAT? They would start talking! And we would respond! And THEN we were having a conversation! People, most people at least, are really happy to talk to other people. To be approached for a conversation is a nice thing that most humans enjoy, and I think that gets lost a lot. People get too in their own heads and get caught up in modern anxiety and they forget that people love contact and connecting, and although it takes a bit of bravery, I am SURE this guy would love to chat with you. I would almost recommend waiting for the next work get-together (if it’s somewhat soon) and just approaching him! What about asking if he knows of MetalSucks (since you obviously do now!), or saying “What office do you work in?” I mean you two work for the same company! This is a huge starting off point, just as much as liking the same music is. For a relationship to form, it is my belief you only need one thing in common. Work is a HUGE one. You know a lot of the same people, I am sure, you work in the same field, you probably have the same boss, you are living the same city! Liking the same music, although nice, isn’t that important, and it is only one factor in a world of many. You have a huge common ground to stand on, and you can start with anything related to that.

If you can’t do it in person, an email will also work. Maybe something like: “I loved your long flowing hair! What is your secret?”, or “I noticed you were wearing a vintage Iron Maiden t-shirt. Do you know where I could get one for my metal cousin who is visiting next week?” This is obviously a lie, but early dating can entail lying! Send that email, girl! And ask him what happened with Isis! We never found out because we were having too much fun.

Special thanks to executive producer Maximus Frank.

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