Is this parenting too harsh?
Today, my history class somehow got onto the topic of kids playing sports. My teacher told us that he said to his daughter “if you want to keep playing lacrosse, you have to get better.” Keep in mind that this girl is eleven years old, not a high schooler who is looking for an athletic scholarship. She was only involved for fun and because my teacher is a lacrosse coach. He justified it as he was giving his daughter the coach, not the dad.
My friends and I were talking about it later, and we all agreed that he was too harsh on her. I know that he wasn’t trying to be outwardly mean, but I don’t think it is right to talk to your daughter like that.
I was this close to going up to him after class and yelling at him for it and telling him that his kids are going to grow up with an overarching feeling of inadequacy and hating themselves. And that they are going to be driven to stop doing the things they enjoy just because you instilled so much self doubt and low self esteem in them. I feel so bad for those poor kids. (He also has a younger son.)
I can relate to this really personally because my stepdad did that to my sister and me because we used to be involved in theater. We weren’t that good but we did it for fun. At one point he said that if we don’t get better then he would stop coming to see our shows. And when I used to play tennis he always made comments about how unathletic we were. I only did it for fun. It’s not like I was trying to be the next tennis star. He just didnt want to spend his money unless I was gonna be great. And plus one of his best friends has these two perfect kids who are amazing at everything and he was always comparing us to them.
I don’t think my Teacher’s justification of “putting on his coach face” is valid. To a fragile eleven year old girl there is no difference. But perhaps I am relating it too closely to my own experiences.