1. Welcome to SportsJournalists.com, a friendly forum for discussing all things sports and journalism.

    Your voice is missing! You will need to register for a free account to get access to the following site features:
    • Reply to discussions and create your own threads.
    • Access to private conversations with other members.
    • Fewer ads.

    We hope to see you as a part of our community soon!

Need opinions of parents.....

Discussion in 'Anything goes' started by zagoshe, Nov 13, 2009.

  1. zagoshe

    zagoshe Well-Known Member

    I am wrestling with one right now and just want to see what others think....

    My son is a very good soccer player and plays for a cup team that plays at a very high level. He's the leading scorer and all that crap and they have a very important tournament to play in tomorrow.

    Yesterday, however, I get a note from his social studies teacher that he's failing but not because he isn't doing well on tests - he has gotten all A's - but because he hasn't turned in any assignments for the past two weeks (even though he comes home every day and tells me he did all his homework).

    He is a good student but we've had to have these laziness talks a few times now that he is moving towards high school and distracted by being girl crazy and that whole "I'm a teenager now, I'm Joe Cool....."

    My first inclination was to whup his ass but of course, that would land me in trouble and wouldn't change the issue. My second is to ground him and not only ground his ass, ground him by forbidding him to go to the tournament this weekend because that is the kind of thing that would get his attention.

    Of course, coaches and other parents are not at all happy and gave me the "hurting the team" and letting the team down bullshit speeches.

    So now part of me is feeling like - perhaps I should think about it because all the other kids have worked hard and I'm not saying this because he is my son, without him they are not nearly as good of a team and really struggle to score goals.

    But I still feel like my first instinct - to tell him he ain't going is the right one because he needs to learn. It is one thing to fail or fall behind because you are struggling with the work - it is another to be lazy and just too cool to do your assignments. Also, if you have to face your teammates and they know YOU let them down, maybe you will think about it again.

    So while I balance this decision, any help would be appreciated - what would you do? DOes the whole "team needs him and it is not fair to his teammates" crap fly with you?

    Fuck this parenting shit can be tricky some times.
  2. JC

    JC Well-Known Member

    Go with your instinct, your responsibility is to your son, not the team. If he loves the game their is nothing that will grab his attention quicker than taking away something he loves.
  3. Hank_Scorpio

    Hank_Scorpio Active Member

    I'm guessing it's not a school team. A lot of schools wouldn't let him play if he was failing a class.

    The other parents, if they are truly good parents, would understand if you decided to not let him play.

    Is there more than one game tomorrow? If so, maybe you can sit him for one game and then let him play the rest. Having him sit on the bench and not able to play, might just hit home a bit for your son.

    Whatever you do, like JC just said, do it for your son, not for the team.
  4. Rosie

    Rosie Active Member

    He doesn't play.

    End of discussion.

    You're the parent of your son, not the other parents.
  5. OTD

    OTD Active Member


    I pulled my son from his baseball team last year for the same reason. Good grades when he took tests, but didn't turn in his work. The vacation did two things: first, a punishment for screwing up and second, it gave him some time to focus on schoolwork.

    I will say that once during his vacation, (it was about a month) the coach called and said they were short-handed. I let him play that game, but he sat out several more after. His grades did improve, and he finished the season. I was glad he was able to play again, because we knew going in that that was his last season playing ball.

    I had the complete backing of the coaches. In fact, two came over to the house and had a "come-to-Jesus" meeting with my son, impressing on him the need to keep up with his work so he could play. If your coaches can't prioritize what's important, then screw them.

    And no, you can't hit him. Pretty soon, he'll be bigger than you (like my son is now) and he might hold a grudge.
  6. joe king

    joe king Active Member

    I've had the same issue with my son and an activity he is very invested in in which the kids count on each other a lot. But when we had a discipline/trust issue this week, we held firm, and he did not go.

    Kids have to understand that they are accountable for their actions, and those actions affect others as well as themselves. And, yes, make him explain it to the coach and the team, because it was his screw-up -- and no one else's -- that cost the team its best scorer. Peer pressure can be a good thing sometimes.
  7. YankeeFan

    YankeeFan Well-Known Member

    If you previously told him that fucking up on his grades would result in him not playing, then it's fair.

    If you hadn't made that clear previously, I wouldn't pull him. He won't think it's fair. He'll be bitter and will feel like he's let his team down.

    It won't produce the results you're looking for.

    As long as everyone knows the consequences ahead of time, however you decide to discipline him is fine.
  8. mustangj17

    mustangj17 Active Member

    I'm also a coach, and if one of my athletes got grounded and couldn't play I would be furious.

    I would understand, but I would also be very pissed off.
  9. Armchair_QB

    Armchair_QB Well-Known Member

    Parents are a pain in the ass.
  10. outofplace

    outofplace Well-Known Member

    I want to make sure I understand something. Did you alread ground him, including making him sit out the tournament, and now you are reconsidering? It sounds that way, since you mentioned a negative reaction from the coaches and other parents.

    If that is the case, the first thing you do is politely ask the coaches and other parents to shut the fuck up. This is your child, not theirs, and they have no business butting into your parenting decisions. Not even when it has an impact on them.

    I also think you have to stand firm regarding the grounding. Nothing is more important than consistency. When you tell your son the way it's going to be, it has to be that way. This is especially true with discipline. I'm sure you know kids love to test us as parents. They have to know that we are willing to stand firm, even if it means upsetting the other kids and coaches.

    I think you made the right call. School has to be the priority, the thing that your son has to take care of first before he does anything else. Now you just have to stand by your decision even though you are going to take a little heat for it.

    edit: YankeeFan does raise a good point. If you had not made the consequences of messing up in school clear in the past, it would help you out a great deal to do so now. Doesn't mean you back off on the current punishment even if you hadn't. Just something that may smooth things out down the line.
  11. outofplace

    outofplace Well-Known Member

    I certainly hope you would have the sense to be pissed off at the athlete rather than the parents.
  12. Songbird

    Songbird Well-Known Member

    What if you make him sit the first game. Let the chips fall where they may. The team might not advance into the winner's bracket, but it shouldn't really matter. It's youth sports.

    I'd like to think he'd get the message by sitting out the first game.
Draft saved Draft deleted

Share This Page