Teamwork. It is something that we all need to learn. I bet every one of us could name someone who doesn’t know how to be a team player. Traditionally, playing team sports is the gold standard on how to figure this little party of life out. While I get that…we are not a team sports house. Well, that isn’t really true. Dewey played ALL the sports. Evan and I less so. I am the most athletically challenged person on the earth and Evan…well….
Evan is smart as a whip, kind, generous and so many other things. He has issues navigating the day, though. Transitions are hard. Situations without choices are difficult.
In some ways, I think that team sports might be a fun way to help all those things. And then I see posts like the one I saw today. You know the one.
“Your child’s success or lack of success in sports does not indicate what kind of parent you are. But having an athlete that is coachable, respectful, a great teammate, mentally tough, resilient and tries their best IS a direct reflection of your parenting.”
Do you know how done I am with people judging behavior based on ME? How about people with kids who have autism? SPD? Anything? And it is not because they are special snowflakes. It is because they CAN’T always be coachable, respectful and all the rest. And while the coaches out there can say “yes, but they do their best”, what about the other parents? They read signs like this and take it as an opening to judge other’s parenting based on how much of a team player a kid may be.
Instead of seeing how hard they are trying. How hard they want to be just like everyone else and be successful. How crushed they are when they can’t control their emotions after being yelled at.
You see, even when teachers and coaches know about a kid and their struggles, parents don’t. I have had people tell me that “well maybe if you tried spanking him” or “well maybe if you were more strict”. Even an administrator that said “well if he tried harder…” Navigating through that at school makes agreeing to do it all again in sports a non-starter. Why would someone with a kid who struggles agree to take part?
And for all the amazing coaches out there who make sure that wouldn’t happen? Thank you! But I will tell you, signs like these that get all the “likes” and “hell yeahs” will keep this mom and her kid out of your sport. Which, in the end, will get you what you want. Nice coachable kids. But know,you are missing out on some great ones too.
I’ve sat with this a few days before posting. I realize that I could be making a mountain out of a molehill. Maybe coaches and parents would be more amazing than one little sign can convey. Maybe. But this mama protects his heart and mine so we won’t take that chance. At least not today.