One of my recurring pet peeves is parents who try to live their dreams through their children. Also, one of my favorite things to do is read Jeff Opdyke's semi-weekly WSJ column and rag on him for being a loser. This weekend I hit a double: a column about how he was living his dreams about being the dad of a soccer star through his son, who, it ends up, didn't really love soccer as much as Opdyke thought he did.
The parents who attend every practice and every game drive me nuts. You have to leave the kid alone for a while and let him or her see if s/he enjoys the sport for the fun of it or because mom and/or dad like it. The problem is that so many of these team sports are run by parent volunteers, and the parents make a commitment then can't let the kid back out.
I'm probably going to have to let me daughter give up dance soon. I hope she sticks with it, but she has been having a hard year. I'm sure 11 is a tough year for dancers (or whenever they have growth spurts and hit puberty). I think my daughter just feels tall and busty and gawky around the other girls who haven't reached puberty yet (well, my daughter technically hasn't yet, but just had a massive growth spurt). But I have to find that balance between being Amy Chua and insisting on mastery Or Else vs. forcing my daughter to do something that makes her unhappy. Nowadays, she loves music, anyway. It fills her need to perform and she is good at it. That's all I want for her--to practice something and become good at it so it gives her pleasure to do it.
I'm sad... though I won't miss those godawful competitions. I like the jazz and tap numbers, but the stupid endless power ballads for the lyrical dances and the annoying hip-hop songs drive me insane.