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Perks
06-03-2009, 04:28 AM
So, my ten year old wanted to play softball this year. This was her first request for any sort of team activity and, since she's the oldest, my first exposure to sports parents.

These girls are 10,11, and 12 years old and their parents (especially of the star players) spend the majority of the game braying criticism at their girls. It's horrible. One woman even dialed up her husband who hadn't made it to the game so that he could make his daughter cry after a rough patch during one game.

Tonight I ended up sitting between one grating cow bellowing at her excellent player and the an entire family heckling away at another of the team's most valuable assets. The girls were being raked even worse when they were out of earshot, with their parents and siblings mocking the way they throw or run or how they swing the bat.

I really don't understand how the girls can even get up the enthusiasm to play. I would love (which is terrible of me) to see one of these girls whip around during the game and yell, "Hey, Ma! How 'bout you get off your fat ass and come out here and do it yourself since you know so much."

The tournament starts tomorrow. I'm bring camp chairs and sitting very fucking far away.

spamwarrior
06-03-2009, 04:30 AM
That is horrible. When it comes to competition, parents can be a hundred times worse than their kids.

BenPanced
06-03-2009, 04:34 AM
Wow. And these are the people who are afraid they'll be looked down upon as horrible parents if they don't let their kids play in every single after-school sport.

quickWit
06-03-2009, 05:46 AM
Ahhh, the joy of youth athletics. My two kids (10 & 13) have been playing sports for years and invariably every season we encounter parents (and coaches for that matter) such as those you describe. It's disgusting. My wife and I tend to do exactly what you're planning, Perks -- sit far, far away and cheer for every kid on the field.

Best of luck to little Perks in her tournament. :)

Perks
06-03-2009, 05:50 AM
Thanks! She's actually done really well this season and she's having a great time. It's exciting - I get to get the sports thrills without having to get all dirty and sweaty myself. Excellent arrangement.

Calla Lily
06-03-2009, 05:50 AM
My DH and 2 sons have been playing and refereeing soccer for years. This season for some reason, the parents and volunteer coaches have been appalling. Both my DH and older son have had to stop games to ask coaches to talk to the parents, or to tell the coach to ramp it down or he'll be ejected. Scary.

quickWit
06-03-2009, 06:04 AM
Thanks! She's actually done really well this season and she's having a great time. It's exciting - I get to get the sports thrills without having to get all dirty and sweaty myself. Excellent arrangement.

Absolutely. Not to mention the fact that if she really sucks it won't be you the other parents will be yelling at.

Bonus. :)

KTC
06-03-2009, 06:21 AM
Ooh. Perks said fucking. She must be mucho ticked.


My son has been in hockey for about 10 years. He's 13. We start them young here. Every year we find another person to call the worst hockey parent ever. It's extraordinary what you hear when you sit with these fucking freaks! This year...the worst one would always scream, "HIT HIM! HIT HIM, MIKE! HIT HIM!" Every single second his son was on the ice. It gets ugly in the hockey arena.

I just LOVE watching my son enjoy the game. It's the happiest time of the year for me...being in the arena watching him loving the game. You have to learn to close yourself off from the ugly people. And they're awfully ugly at times.

quickWit
06-03-2009, 06:23 AM
You have to learn to close yourself off from the ugly people. And they're awfully ugly at times.

^ Case in point.

:)

Devil Ledbetter
06-03-2009, 06:49 AM
My 7-year-old started Little League this spring. It's very laid back here - I've seen no bad parental behavior at all. Everyone just hangs out, visits, pays 1/2 a bit of attention to the game and claps and cheers when someone does something right.

We must be lucky. Of course, my kid's team is quite possibly the worst team on the league (I don't think they've won a single game) so there doesn't seem to be a lot at stake. Tonight's score: 13 to 4. :D

They look so cute in their uniforms.

TerzaRima
06-03-2009, 06:49 AM
Don't many kiddie sports leagues nowadays make parents sign some kind of pledge not to be asshats, and then eject them if they fail to comply? I seem to remember some stellar example of fatherhood who was booted from my niece's soccer season after multiple warnings, because he could not restrain himself from yelling himself hoarse at a pack of 7 and 8 year olds. Second grade girls soccer...the agony of defeat, man.

Perks
06-03-2009, 04:40 PM
I don't remember any waiver, but I did sign some releases. It could have been in there.

I guess my biggest problem is that while watching this, you can see damned-near hatred flashing in these girls' eyes when they hear their mothers and fathers complaining, and very loudly at that, that they're not doing it right.

I know that as my girls get into adolescence, there's a reasonable likelihood that they'll hate me for a stint. I just want it to be over something that I did right, not wrong. Hassling them over the details of a recreational game seems like a guaranteed wedge that could be easily avoided.

JJ Cooper
06-03-2009, 04:49 PM
I swear I'm the only parent on the sideline of my oldest boy's soccer games that screams for him to pass the ball to another player and share the goals.

My six year old has scored 37 goals in nine games (OK ... I'm keeping count because I miss a lot of them because I'm away with work - and proud), but, even at this stage some parents are calling out for their kids to take the legs out of my boy. Seriously sad (because their kids couldn't get near mine lol).

JJ

WendyNYC
06-03-2009, 05:24 PM
Don't many kiddie sports leagues nowadays make parents sign some kind of pledge not to be asshats, and then eject them if they fail to comply? I seem to remember some stellar example of fatherhood who was booted from my niece's soccer season after multiple warnings, because he could not restrain himself from yelling himself hoarse at a pack of 7 and 8 year olds. Second grade girls soccer...the agony of defeat, man.

My daughter's soccer team had a rule for cheering parents: no verbs. "Yay" "Good job" "Yippee" were acceptable. "Run" "Kick it" "Shoot" were not.

So another smartass mom and I used to say "Aggressively!"

I don't yell, though. My kids *hate* that. I smile and clap. For everyone.

quickWit
06-03-2009, 05:41 PM
Don't many kiddie sports leagues nowadays make parents sign some kind of pledge not to be asshats, and then eject them if they fail to comply?

We had them for basketball and baseball, yes. And, to their credit, the refs and umpires don't put up with much nonsense. We've seen several parents removed over the years, and I remember the horrified looks on every one of their poor kids faces. One parent even promised to wait outside for the ref after the game.

The ref was a 14 year old boy. Four of us had to escort him from the building.

Nice.

Stew21
06-03-2009, 05:44 PM
The sports my boys have played have been very laid back, but they are young and still very much learning the sports they have wanted to try. I don't handle the heckling parent thing well. I have a feeling I'm going to need earplugs to go to their games when they get older. I don't understand the behavior (particularly as some of my friends with older kids have told me that the same parents who do this kind of heckling are the ones who yell at coaches because it isn't fair that their kid is not getting enough play time.)

auntybug
06-03-2009, 05:48 PM
That crap always went on at my son's roller hockey games. Broke my heart when one of the 13 year old boys threw his stick down and cried. "Why can't you just let us play."
My daughter doesn't want to play a sport right now & I'm not pushing it.

regdog
06-03-2009, 05:53 PM
Those parents should be slapped really hard.

I'm happy to say that at our local games when parents start that crap, they're thrown out.

quickWit
06-03-2009, 05:56 PM
I'm really glad my kids are involved as they are in sports. They've had great coaches and made a lot of friends, and they've grown a lot as individuals for having had the experience. As I've said, we've had our share of pinheads along the way, but the positives have far outweighed the negatives for us.

Just wanted to say it snot all doom and gloom. Carry on. :)

backslashbaby
06-03-2009, 06:03 PM
You have my sincere condolences.

It's a special kind of crazy that you have to see to believe. We had a priest who did it to his son!

Stew21
06-03-2009, 06:04 PM
My boys love sports and have already gotten a great deal out of being part of a team, and all of the other "sports-positives", but I have to say I'm a tad worried about how people in the stands could ruin the experience for some, including the kids.

WendyNYC
06-03-2009, 06:05 PM
I'm really glad my kids are involved as they are in sports. They've had great coaches and made a lot of friends, and they've grown a lot as individuals for having had the experience. As I've said, we've had our share of pinheads along the way, but the positives have far outweighed the negatives for us.

Just wanted to say it snot all doom and gloom. Carry on. :)

Yes, ditto. We've had good experiences overall.

My daughters are into fencing, and one of the wonderful things about that sport is that the parents don't know what the heck is going on.

"Riposte! Riposte! Now parry!" doesn't really happen.

Perks
06-03-2009, 06:07 PM
Yeah, my daughter loves the game and it's terrific for making friends and developing confidence. I'm very happy she's participating, just taken aback at why some parents would even want to cultivate such hostility in their own families. If you're going to bother to pay the fees and drive to all the practices and games, you'd think you'd go the rest of the way and take advantage of the easy opportunity to be supportive in the microcosm of elation and failure that is a sports season.

No-brainer brownie points to bring your kids' hearts closer to your own.

People are so weird.

Perks
06-03-2009, 06:08 PM
My daughters are into fencing, and one of the wonderful things about that sport is that the parents don't know what the heck is going on.

oooh! Fencing could be cool.

quickWit
06-03-2009, 06:14 PM
I think a good deal of the whackos believe their kids to be

A) The engine that drives the team and

B) Destined to go pro

I had a dad tell me the other night at my daughter's baseball game that his son has a good chance to go pro.

He's 13. At 13 half the kids have just begun puberty and may well be bigger and better than him in 2 years. He's a nice ballplayer and a decent kid, but he's a bigger than average, better than average player on a below average team. As soon as he said that I thought to myself "My God, that poor kid."

spamwarrior
06-03-2009, 06:16 PM
They should be thrown out. Is there someone you can complain to about this behavior? Because it's very ... I don't know the word to use... destructive? Demeaning?

Perks
06-03-2009, 06:20 PM
Actually I did talk to the coach's wife. She and I have been friendly and I told her that I wouldn't be sitting in the bleachers anymore (and why), but that I didn't want her to think I was being unsociable.

The coach (and his family) and the assistant coaches seem to be truly terrific guys. Just love them. I think, from what she says, it bothers them too, but they've been at this a long time and decide to try to make up for it on the field and with the time they have with the girls.

backslashbaby
06-03-2009, 06:21 PM
Because it's very ... I don't know the word to use... destructive? Demeaning?

Batsh!t crazy?

spamwarrior
06-03-2009, 07:08 PM
Batsh!t crazy?

Right!

I wish there was something they could do. Maybe at the start of a new season or something they could put a few rules there? better than nothing. I feel really bad for the poor kiddoes.

Pagey's_Girl
06-03-2009, 08:02 PM
I think some parents get their own self-esteem too wrapped up in it - if their child is a "loser" (read: imperfect like the rest of us) them by association mommy/daddy is a loser too and we just can't have that. So that poor kid is going to a bloody damn star at everything mommy and/or daddy decide they're going to do or else. A kid shouldn't grow up feeling like a parent's love is conditional on them being anything but themselves.

spamwarrior
06-03-2009, 10:11 PM
I know some Chinese parents who feel like they're failures when their kids don't study medicine or law or something high paying. I have a friend whose parents let him study music. But his aunts and uncles give his mom a hard time. They consider her a failure as a parent.

Soccer Mom
06-03-2009, 10:18 PM
The bad news is that these parents don't just exist in the sporting world. You wouldn't believe some of the "music" parents. Wow! They put the sports mafia to shame.

On the whole, I've been very lucky with most of my sons various coaches and the other parents. But there have been some notable problems and there is currently a girls softball team (from another town) that has become such a problem with parents and coaches that the police stand by whenever they are in town to play a game. They are that bad. It boggles my mind.

Silver King
06-04-2009, 02:34 AM
It only takes one or two loud mouths to ruin it for the kids and spectators. I got so fed up with one guy once that I took him aside and told him to shut the hell up. He had been pacing the sidelines, screaming at the players like a maniac. He became very upset and took a swing at me. I stepped back in time to avoid the blow, then kicked him in the nuts. He slumped to the ground in a fetal position, holding onto his balls as if they might escape their confines. I leaned down and whispered, "I mean it. Keep your goddamn mouth shut from now on."

Later that day, a very nice cop showed up at my house, curious to hear my side of the story. Since no one witnessed the confrontation, there wasn't much to be done about it, but I was informed that my presence was no longer permitted on the soccer field. It worked out for the best, though, since I signed up my kids in a different program across town, where the parents were much better behaved.

writerterri
06-04-2009, 04:04 AM
Darling Perks, you must do what I do and volenteer for the snack bar. Spit blends into coke very well and there's nothing like a butt scratch and a finger stir too.


Gives new meaning to a Coke and a smile. :D

KTC
06-04-2009, 04:10 AM
Darling Perks, you must do what I do and volenteer for the snack bar. Spit blends into coke very well and there's nothing like a butt scratch and a finger stir too.


Gives new meaning to a Coke and a smile. :D


What is this volenteer that you speak of?

writerterri
06-04-2009, 04:17 AM
What is this volenteer that you speak of?


Fark! Fergot to spill chek.

writerterri
06-04-2009, 04:19 AM
It's a glassbole who can't sound out werds.

KTC
06-04-2009, 04:20 AM
It's a glassbole who can't sound out werds.

It's an asshole who corrects people. I am what I am.

writerterri
06-04-2009, 04:27 AM
It's an asshole who corrects people. I am what I am.


I like what you said better.



I heart you.

KTC
06-04-2009, 04:42 AM
I heart you.

I know. Everybody does.

spamwarrior
06-04-2009, 07:12 AM
It only takes one or two loud mouths to ruin it for the kids and spectators. I got so fed up with one guy once that I took him aside and told him to shut the hell up. He had been pacing the sidelines, screaming at the players like a maniac. He became very upset and took a swing at me. I stepped back in time to avoid the blow, then kicked him in the nuts. He slumped to the ground in a fetal position, holding onto his balls as if they might escape their confines. I leaned down and whispered, "I mean it. Keep your goddamn mouth shut from now on."

Later that day, a very nice cop showed up at my house, curious to hear my side of the story. Since no one witnessed the confrontation, there wasn't much to be done about it, but I was informed that my presence was no longer permitted on the soccer field. It worked out for the best, though, since I signed up my kids in a different program across town, where the parents were much better behaved.

What about the other guy? Do you know if he was asked to leave too? He should have...

Sweetleaf
06-04-2009, 08:12 AM
My husband played rugby for years.

My mother in law punched out the father of one of the kids on the opposing teams for abusing at his kid after hubby took him down with a tackle.

When the principal came over and had a go at her she put her umbrella through his shin.
She was banned from all matches after that.



I love my mother in law. :D

JoNightshade
06-04-2009, 11:08 AM
I never experienced the yelling, screaming parents when I was a kid playing Boys and Girls Club basketball. Not because they didn't exist, but because it was so entrenched in the system. It was like the basketball mafia or something. The "best" coaches who did it year after year got first pick of the kids, so they always had the same teams, year after year. Naturally they also won all the games. The new coaches got stuck with the leftovers, which included me. Leftovers were kids whose parents were not hard-core slave drivers (me) or the kids who were new or just not very good. We had fun, but after 3 years I got tired of always losing and quit.

When Baby Nightshade is old enough, he/she will be enrolled in martial arts, under a sensei who I will ensure is responsible and teaches respect and honor. Even if there are scary parents, at least it's more of a one-on-one thing and you don't HAVE to go to competitions.

White-Tean
06-04-2009, 11:44 AM
Yes, ditto. We've had good experiences overall.

My daughters are into fencing, and one of the wonderful things about that sport is that the parents don't know what the heck is going on.

"Riposte! Riposte! Now parry!" doesn't really happen.

Oh gosh, that is a perk of fencing.
Went to a tournament a friend who does sabreur was in once, and for all that we were enthusiatic to support her, even her own family didn't understand it enough to offer unsolicited advice. The only thing I even know about her discipline is that apparently the groin is on target and not as many men do it.

I'm not old enough to have settled down and had kids, but growing up doing sports - horseriding and a bit of gymnastics for me, although my sister was really the gymnast - nutty parents and their children were always the worst. I suppose while I enjoy the activity of sports and the pleasure of riding my horse, I'm not competive in sports so I was always intimidated by the crazies and crazy Jnrs and the way they acted like winning this sport of wearing this much hairspray was deathly important, and as I'm into sports for enjoyment and my health I don't really like people taking all the fun out of it. I'd rather focus on riding my shaggy horse better than shaving her beard for cosmetic points.

So saying, I'm lucky that in horseriding when you board your horse at a stable you're able to ride with people purely for pleasure outside of any competition, unlike a lot of sports where you have matches. It's actually why we moved to a stable which backs out onto a pine plantation and almost all the riders are adults and not mad-keen youths. It's very cool.

Perks
06-04-2009, 03:04 PM
Eeeep! My baby hit a triple last night and they're in the semi-finals! :)

And I sat far away and it was most enjoyable.

sheadakota
06-04-2009, 03:24 PM
Ooo congrats to little perks!!

when my son was five, he played T-ball. When he was seven he tried out for softball- now first off- they made them try out for softball?? What is up with that? The kids are freaking seven-years old!!

When the list comes out- my kid was put back in t-ball for another year after all his classmates/friends were advanced to softball!

You can imagine how that made him feel- I called the head of the league and wanted to know why- her explanation -(after i was assured at tryouts that every kid would be assigned to a team) was that there were too many kids, and not enough coaches, so some got reassigned to t-ball-

My son was devestated. he didn't want to play with "the babies" he wanted to play with his friends..

As I told this woman- This is a game- and they are children. Somewhere along the line they forgot that.

My son is twelve and is heavily into karate now and loves it- but I still have hard feelings toward that experience. The woman was asked to leave her position shortly after this happened- to late for my son and the others she hurt, but not for future kids.

Silver King
06-05-2009, 03:52 AM
What about the other guy? Do you know if he was asked to leave too? He should have...
I'm not sure if anyone from the league ever asked him to tone it down. But soon after, my son's new team played against the same club we withdrew from, and we never a heard a peep out of the guy. I've seen him a number of times since then in different settings, and he hasn't as much as glanced in my direction.

What used to burn me most about him was how he'd criticize players on his own team, nasty and degrading comments aimed at his son and teammates. He's just one of those jerks who got away with being an asshole for far too long.

(I caught a lot of grief from my wife over that incident, far mare than was ever worth the tiny glow of satisfaction I felt at the time.)

spamwarrior
06-05-2009, 04:02 AM
My husband played rugby for years.

My mother in law punched out the father of one of the kids on the opposing teams for abusing at his kid after hubby took him down with a tackle.

When the principal came over and had a go at her she put her umbrella through his shin.
She was banned from all matches after that.



I love my mother in law. :D

I love her too. <3

Perks
06-09-2009, 05:41 AM
Little Perks made it to the championship game!!!


Wednesday night, EST, think good thoughts their way. They are awesome!

quickWit
06-09-2009, 05:54 AM
Little Perks made it to the championship game!!!


Wednesday night, EST, think good thoughts their way. They are awesome!

Woo Hoo! Congrats to little Perks and the rest of the team!

Dichroic
06-09-2009, 02:30 PM
I think part of the problem is parents who have nothing much in their lives besides their kids' sports. To me, an adult who does nothing but take kids to their games is not a dedicated parent, he's a bad example. She's showing the kids that all the fun stuff happens in childhood and there's nothing to look forward to growing up.

(So anyone on this board is by definition absolved of above charges: no idea what else you've got going on in your lives, but by definition you have something that you care about and work to improve at.)

And it's one reason I love rowing: how much cooler is it to see parents who do the same sport as their kids, who can talk shop and share experiences? In one case we had a dad and (very large) 14-year-old-son rowing in the same eight for a few years. How many kids that age do you know who want to grow up just like dad? I knew one - and his dad was likewise proud of the kid's unique capabilities. (Dad was a very accomplished doctor; when I last heard the kid was pre-med -- and had a music minor, a talent his Dad didn't share.) I've seen the same among martial arts people, even know one woman who now gets to spar with her teenager.

aadams73
06-09-2009, 02:40 PM
The bad news is that these parents don't just exist in the sporting world. You wouldn't believe some of the "music" parents. Wow! They put the sports mafia to shame.


And the parents in the dance world? *Shudders* Those women scare the heck out of me. No, your little sugar muffin is not destined to be the next Anna Pavlova, but she's having a good time. But they just push and push until their kids are miserable and vomiting to stay thin.

Let the kids have fun, FFS. They only get to be kids once(or over and over again if you believe in reincarnation).

spamwarrior
06-09-2009, 07:09 PM
And the parents in the dance world? *Shudders* Those women scare the heck out of me. No, your little sugar muffin is not destined to be the next Anna Pavlova, but she's having a good time. But they just push and push until their kids are miserable and vomiting to stay thin.

Let the kids have fun, FFS. They only get to be kids once(or over and over again if you believe in reincarnation).

That is horrible. I was in the dance world for some time. It was a small ballet company, and most of the members were young girls.

That reminds me, I know a mom in my church who started her daughter in ballet, and then made her quit because her daughter didn't "dance well."

How old was her daughter?

4 years old.

>.<

tjwriter
06-09-2009, 07:18 PM
Those psycho parents scare me.

I've tried to involve my oldest in activities that fit her interests and seeing as she's three, that changes all the time. But, a) I don't want to overwhelm her schedule with stuff and b) I'm not going to go crazy with any of her activities. I want her to do things because she loves to do them, not because I want it.

Some of the best times in my childhood were playing pretend games with the neighborhood kids. We were creative and imaginative in filling our free time with games. We behaved like kids, not young superstars.

quickWit
06-11-2009, 07:31 PM
Little Perks made it to the championship game!!!


Wednesday night, EST

Sooooo...?

Perks
06-11-2009, 07:37 PM
Ack! The game was canceled due to rain. Horribly, if they can't play tonight, the league says the two teams will have to be co-champions.

Grrrr. I hope the rain stays away!

quickWit
06-11-2009, 09:15 PM
Ack! The game was canceled due to rain. Horribly, if they can't play tonight, the league says the two teams will have to be co-champions.

Grrrr. I hope the rain stays away!

D'oh! :)

Perks
06-12-2009, 06:27 AM
The baby Perks won! They didn't just win - they had to invoke the mercy rule. (Just like they did in the last three games!)

I've got a kid that's hotter than hot (how hot is hot?) Grand slams and Championships, too (uh-huh uh-huh) Now we know what the Red Sox can do!

Congratulations Julia and the SBRAA Champion Red Sox!!

Williebee
06-12-2009, 06:36 AM
Woo Hoo! Way to go, slugger!