5 Times I have Sucked at Being a Sports Parent |
Parents are crazy, right? We all know we are, and it’s totally okay to be a little crazy sometimes. Most of us do our best to hide our crazy by sticking a blow pop in our mouths, or walking away, or saving it for our spouse when we get in the privacy of the car on the ride home. But then there are those parents that really just stick it out there for the world to see and give the rest of us semi-sane sports parents a bad rap.
We all make mistakes, react out of emotion on impulse, say things – do things, we know we shouldn’t.
So today is about simple repentance. I have sucked at being a sports parent before. And unfortunately, I will probably do it again. What about you?
- I have said that your kid sucked! I admit it. But before you go all crazy on me, understand that I have not said it to your kid, or to your face. But I have said ‘so and so sucks” as I sat in my chair and watched a game! And that’s just sooooo wrong, and so against everything inside me as a decent human. (Sometimes at softball games I just need more Jesus) But when she drops a fly ball that looks like a can of corn, or watches 3 strikes looking for the 5th time in one day – or just, IDK generally sucks, I have a tendency to let it slip. BUT… when it’s MY KID who is having a sucky day, I will say she sucks too. So at least I am fair about it. Even so, it’s still not nice to say mean things about children. And with some saving grace I can say for certain that I have never said it to the kid or parent of the kid that was sucking.
- I have felt angry when my child did not perform well. Stupid, right? But I have felt anger, like I am mad, like someone cut me off in traffic mad, build up inside of me when she has made silly errors, or struck out, or just not really played well. Like WHAT THE HELL IS WRONG WITH YOU???? ALL THESE LESSONS AND MONEY AND TIME AND YOU ACT LIKE YOU DON’T WANT TO BE HERE – I COULD BE DOING LAUNDRY FOR GOODNESS SAKES! Maybe it’s because I know that all the other people watching are saying to themselves, “Wow – she sucks!” Or maybe it’s because I have high expectations, or maybe it’s just because I am a jerk. But anger is definitely not the appropriate emotion to feel, especially when any kid already struggling. Totally unnecessary (but boy is it frustrating) because after all – these are just kids and no one is perfect, and being mad is not going to help anything. The real lesson here is to learn from it, and to be sure not to let my kid see that I am mad.
- I have questioned coaches decisions. Like a lot! Look, my spouse coaches. And if you think for one minute that just because we are married, they are instantly right in my eyes – you are wrong! We have started driving separately to tournaments for this reason alone. Why did you NOT send that girl on 3rd that would have won the game? Or, WHY THE HECK DID YOU SEND HER WHEN YOU KNEW SHE WAS SLOW? What kind of line up is this? Whose idea was it to put Sally Snowflake in left field to daydream during the championship game? Why are we starting this pitcher? I have said things like, “Does this coach even want to win, what the hell is wrong with them?” Yeah. This. And I guess it’s really easy to armchair coach from the stands but sometimes it seems like some things should just be obvious, but coaches get dugout dirt in their brains or something. And look, I am pretty sure if I were coaching, I could have made a different decision and won every single one of those games that we have ever lost…
- I have prayed for rain. On a Saturday. (Actually on a Friday night) And then pretended to be really upset when it rained because my daughter was disappointed that she didn’t get to play in her tournament, but meanwhile on the inside I was dancing around like Julie Andrews in The Sound of Music. Oh COME ON, don’t judge…after 10 years everyone needs a little break from time to time!
- I have went on endlessly (and annoyingly) about how great my kid is to the point of being annoying to others. Oh, how these parents annoy me. The ones that go on and on for eons about all the amazing, fantastic, super things their kids did during a game and then when you asked if they won they say “No, but my daughter played like a D1 super star!” But y’all still lost, huh? Anyways…being a proud parent is nothing to be ashamed of. Most parents bend the truth a little when it comes to their kids performance, and we all see greatness in our kids that sometimes other people do not see. It’s really not a bad thing, it’s just an annoying thing. And very few coaches (or fellow parents) need to be told how awesome our kid can play, nor do they want to hear about it – they just want to see it for themselves.
And there you have it! So now FAN-FESS! Tell us about that one time when YOU were an awful sports parent.
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