Every Kid Takes a Turn Sitting the Bench

My boys play sports.  We’ve done baseball, football, soccer, wrestling, basketball, and track.  I think that covers the last decade…  I love watching them play, I’ve been a team mom or keeper of the book many times to show my support.  My son’s dad has coached, and my fiancé has coached – we are a pretty involved family.

However, our involvement stops with official coaching and supporting.  When I say official coaching, I mean the men were officially the coach of the team – not the parents on the side being the coach or yelling at the coach or emailing/calling the coach about playing time.  That’s not coaching – that is annoying.

One year during a rec season, I had one mom tell me that her son should get more playing time because he is younger than the other boys and really doesn’t know what he is doing.  He is trying really hard and she wished the coaches would recognize that.  That’s the mom side of the story.

The other side is every time the kid had to sit out, he threw a fit.  Literally a FIT.  Throwing things, slamming things, crying, yelling – you know, good team behavior. 

I mentioned, in a gentle reminder kind of way, that this is rec league and they try their best to give everyone equal playing time, and this should have been explained to her and her son when they signed up and at the coaches meeting.  She said she knew, but her son did not understand and she thinks it is just because he is younger.

Let’s just stop there.  I’m sorry if I am going to offend sports parents but let’s try to remember a couple of things: 1.  Your kid is not being drafted at any age under 13. Period, so get over it.  2.  Just because your child is a whiner does not mean they get special attention.  If I were coaching the special attention would be more time on the bench until they learned how to be a part of a team (but that is just me). and 3. Stop making excuses – if your kid does not get that it is his turn to sit then perhaps he is not mature enough to play – don’t sign him up.

Whew, sorry, had to get those off my chest.  Now, I am not going to pick on just parents of sports kids here, oh no, it is equal opportunity.  So to that end I would just like to use this little story as a gentle reminder to those in transition.  Just because you feel that you deserve a chance to play for the team (i.e. get the job) does not mean the coach feels the same way.  Maybe you are too young, do not have enough experience or just do not possess the right attitude.  No matter what the reason let me be frank – no one owes you a job.  You must earn it and then keep earning it to keep it.  I do not mean to sound unkind, but if you keep telling everyone how unfair it is that you don’t get the job then guess what – you are the fit throwing, immature little kid that no one wants on their team.

 Now with that, have a wonderful evening and go enjoy some little league football!

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