29 answers

Should I Make My Son Play Football

Hi Moms and Dads, My son wanted to play football, so I signed him up. We are in the starting of the second week. It has been 1 1/2 hour of everyday hard training (which he was told it would be) He has handled it pretty good but they played 2 or 3 nights in the pouring rain. By the end of the week I had to take him to the doctor.He had to miss 2 practices because he had strep throat. The day he went back they were practicing there tackling. Now these are 11, 12, 13, year olds. This is my sons first year, he is 11. When he got up there to tackle he wasn't aggressive enough and the couch freaked out. He grabbed him by the mask on his helmet and started shaking his head all over the place while he was screaming and yelling for about 2 minutes. I no there trying to teach them how to be aggressive but now my son refuses to play. It really freaked him out. I don't want to make him play, but, I don't want him to be a quiter. Also this is his first year at middle school and he is Dyslexic. His reading and writing is at 2ND grade level and he is going to have to work harder at his work than most. I'm mad at myself! I never should of signed him up but i didn't realize it was going to be an everyday thing. I think his school is more important. Am I teaching him to be a quiter? My family is really upset with me. They all played football and cannot believe I'm not making him. What do i do???

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So What Happened?™

Ladies, Thank you so much for your support. I did not make him play football. We were told it was a rough sport, but i did not realize it was so hard core at this age. Yes I was standing there and saw the whole thing. I was in shock, a few minutes later he walked off the field and we did not go back. Regardless of the sport I do not feel any one has the right to treat a child or person in that way. That is not teaching my son sportsmanship! And My family can just get over it!

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Hi D.- My son started football this year too. This is a very agressive situation and I don't think every kid is cut out for that. If my son would ever come to us and say he did not want to play we would let him stop. Football is a whole different animal!!! My son also has a few struggles in school. In my mind school comes first. Sorry you have to deal with family that does not understand. He is not a quitter-it is just not for him.

While I'm normally not in favor of letting kids quit activities left and right, I think in this case you wouldn't be wrong to let him quit. It sounds like the coach's expectations are way out of line with the ages of the kids -- these are kids who should be learning some basic skills and having FUN. This sounds like anything but fun. I would be really mad if a coach ever did that to my kid. In my opinion, the most important thing kids can get from sports is self-esteem and with a coach like that he'll likely loose self-esteem rather than gain it.

What will he learn if he stays in football, and what will he learn if he stops? My thought is that he'll be much better off, heading into adolescence, if he has a mom/grandma that he can trust to hear his side of things and will respond and support him. He might be fine in football with a different coach, but he didn't know this one was going to be abusive. Sticking with something when the going gets tough should be saved for things that he is passionate about doing no matter what. It is not for things that he wants to stop doing. I've heard stories of so many boys who were miserable in a sport that was not right for them, just because they loved their parents and wanted to please them.

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D.,

I don't think you are teaching him to be a quitter; you are teaching him to prioritize his life. Now if he asked you to sign him up for every opportunity that came and then begged to quit a few weeks later because it was boring or he didn't know anyone on his team or he found something he liked better then, yes, make him stick with it until the end of the season. But this is different. We live in a society that believes we have to do everything and be everything and it is crowding out the most important things and people in life. Kids are totally overscheduled and it's taking it's toll on their health and well being. If football isn't in your son's best interest, pull him out.

S.

1 mom found this helpful

It sounds like a pretty extreme situation. I've never been involved with football, but I wouldn't want my child to be treated like that. Did your son initially want to play football because "everyone else in the family has done it" or because he liked it?

I would let him stop, and maybe he can find a different activity that he would enjoy being part of. I don't think this is teaching him to be a quitter. He gave it a try and obviously he is not having fun.

I think school comes first! Don't get good grades you don't get far. He is only 11, wait till he is older for the football it isn't going anywere.

Oh wow I would talk to your son and see if in a week that is what he really wants- he can try again next year if he wants to.

Talk to the coach but don't get all offensive, be sincere and have him hear you out, while you hear what he has to say.

YOur son is who matters the most!

Although I don't like what the coach did that is football and is good for boys. He's gonna have to deal with aggressive jerks the rest of his life.

My daughgter had a soccer coach like that and she would come home in tears. I felt like reporting him but I didn't. I felt like letting her quit but I didn't. I look back on it now like wow the coach was a complete jerk but... he did make my daughter a incredible soccer player and she now a few years later is kicking everyones butt at soccer and it really goes back to her old mean jerky coach.

So I wouldn't make your son quit football. I would have him tough it out a bit more.

Hello D.! Allowing him to quit is a good thing! My brother was in the same position, only he was the smallest 11 year old wrestler on the team. The coach tortured him and had the other players rough him up....my brother ended up with a broken collar bone. My mom immediately took him out of wrestling and was ostracized by the community and laughed at by the school. But she didn't care. She KNEW what was right! YOU are doing the right thing!

My nephew and neices play tennis. They love their sport and they love their coaches. They are pushed but NEVER abused. If that is what football is about then football sucks.

Good job Mom! Stick by your convictions and file a report! Sounds like Coach could use some anger management classes.

I hope you don't force your son/grandson to play football. Surely there are better things he can do with his time after school, like getting extra help with his reading and\or swim team. Sorry to hear your family is really upset with you, but they need to get their priorities in check. It is okay to sign up for something and then change your mind about it. People do that all the time. I think especially because his reading level is so low, focusing on violent sports right now isn't going to help him. I've never liked football, I think it teaches boys to be agressive and lose touch with their feelings. Spend your freetime with him after school talking about college, and touring colleges. Give him a door to his future, and help him close that football window.

Hi D.- My son started football this year too. This is a very agressive situation and I don't think every kid is cut out for that. If my son would ever come to us and say he did not want to play we would let him stop. Football is a whole different animal!!! My son also has a few struggles in school. In my mind school comes first. Sorry you have to deal with family that does not understand. He is not a quitter-it is just not for him.

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