Lil Man Parenting

The Hypocritical Football Mom

Parenting is just down right difficult at times. Second guessing yourself wondering if the decisions you make will hinder them or  will they feel some kind of way about you when they grow up. The whole process feels like a shot in the dark at times.

Last year my husband and I made the decision to not force my son to play football when he brought it to our attention that he didn’t want to play. I even wrote a post about the whole dilemma that got featured on BlogHer and I was heralded for being a great mother for standing by my son’s decision. At the time we wanted to allow him the space to voice his desires knowing that we would stand behind and support him.

Football Mom

Fast forward one year and we are back tracking. He will play football this year. Again this year he stated that he had no desire to play but  we made the executive decision to suit him up, pat him on the bottom and send him on his way. I suppose it wasn’t a we decision but really a decision that  I made and eventually convinced  my husband to get on board with.

See, my son’s personality is one that is hard to describe. He is that kid that will challenge his father and I until we see red. He is that child with a level of curiosity that will have me searching the internet for answers to give him. He can read 4 grade levels ahead, and can clearly articulate his thoughts, and let’s not forget setup an Instagram account against my wishes.

My son is an intellectual. It comes natural for him but he is not tough. He is awkward when he runs, and he is just challenged all around when it comes to physical athletics. This is fine but I feel at this time as parents we wouldn’t be doing him any justice if we didn’t see to it that he tries to come out of his shell and become a little more athletic and aggressive.

Not to fall into gender stereotyping that all boys should be jumping off sofas and tough but I do feel there is a certain level of toughness if you will that males need to possess to make it through this age of bullying and such. Following this Trayvon Martin travesty I ponder as a mother about how aggressive I want him to become but I do know he will need a certain level of it to make it as a boy and later a man in this world.


Yes, I know football is not the definitive factor or sport in creating tough boys but I think it will help. I know some people will disagree with me in my theory but I came to realize after talking to him over the past year that his desire to not  play last year was because he was afraid and didn’t want to put forth the effort needed to be good at it. Hopefully this lesson will teach him that fear isn’t a reason to not do something and that even though you aren’t good at something if you keep at it, giving it all of your effort you will get better. You will either get better or get a definitive understanding that certain things are not for you but fear shouldn’t be allowed to make that decision.

We’ll see. If he doesn’t want to play next year we will more than likely respect that but for now he’s playing and I get to hang out with the rest of the football moms.

Would you force your child to do something they didn’t want to do if you felt it would help make them a better person in the long run?

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  • Reply
    Candace (NYStateofMoM)
    July 18, 2013 at 8:09 am

    You basically wrote this post for me. I can see already while Chunks is wild and crazy at home, trying something new is always a fight. He’s scared to even try! I learned through his swimming lessons that no matter how much he kicks and screams at first he’ll get over it and it will be for his benefit. I’m with you there is a level of aggression that comes with manhood but I think there is a balance, we’re not raisin thugs we’re raising intellects that will know how to handle any circumstance life throws at them. Tell Mr A I said I’m on his cheer leading squad (the NYC division ;-)).

  • Reply
    July 18, 2013 at 11:01 am

    I don’t have boys, but I totally agree with your reasoning, and think it’s important to help our kids to be well rounded. I’m going to be looking into dance/cheer for Izzy in the next year or so, but we’re also gonna push softball, basketball, the chess club, whatever! They have to try things to find their niche, I think.

  • Reply
    Dr. Reginia; The Social Mistress
    July 18, 2013 at 11:45 am

    We would have to find an active activity that he or she liked. I am in agreement that sometimes one has to trudge through the difficulties to build character but it can also build resentment and create undue reservation.

    I am 100% on board with children being active and having a balanced lifestyle. Perhaps another sport will be just for the little guy. What about baseball? (it’s my favorite sport).

  • Reply
    July 18, 2013 at 12:23 pm

    My son does not like anything to do with physical activity he will play if we make him. I didn’t bother with any sports this year because we are trying to build a business and I can’t do the business and go to practice + travel with him to do sports. It was me one doing everything and I was so burned out last football season that I could not do it this year. My son is more on the creative side and is into the arts so we are going to channel that and find some type of art class or maybe even do music to put him in. Speaking of that I need to make some calls on guitar lessons……..

  • Reply
    Prototype Mama
    July 18, 2013 at 2:33 pm

    See I’m the other way around. I’m always pushing for my boys to do something other than sports! My husband is a sports trainer— he trains young kids, college kids and semi pro young men so he’s always pushing our 3 boys to be on some kind of sporting team. Every year consist of baseball, football and basketball games or practice and when it’s off season—their at his gym training or at camp.

    I think kids should be a free spirit– introduce them to a variety of activities and let them decide what they enjoy– I’ve already told my husband that this will be last year of sports because all the boys are trying new activities next year!

    So let your little man decide–or try a more laid back sport like tennis or golf– you never know what he’s passion is 🙂

  • Reply
    July 18, 2013 at 7:12 pm

    I would expose my child to a lot of different things but I would let them choose what they wanted to do. I’m of the mindset, try it and if you don’t like it, then you can stop. That goes with everything from activities to food.

  • Reply
    July 19, 2013 at 12:37 am

    Such a great post! My kids are only 2 and 4 and they’re pretty happy to do whatever activities I put them in. Parenting doesn’t get any easier from here on out, does it? If you think it’ll make him a stronger person and build character, then keep on encouraging him! I’m sure he’ll hate the grueling practices, but he’ll appreciate your support and the feeling he gets when he scores his first touchdown or championship win!

  • Reply
    Mrs. Delightful
    July 19, 2013 at 6:27 am

    Yes, I personally feel that as parents, it’s our job to open our kid’s eyes to a brighter horizon. For instance, my son attended a Science Workshop last spring that I signed him up for in advance, and a day before the workshop I explained to him that he would be attending. He was not happy at all; he was very hesitant due to not knowing anyone that was going to be there. I totally understood how he was feeling but explained to him the importance of networking (yes, I did say networking, LOL).

  • Reply
    Mrs. Pancakes
    July 19, 2013 at 8:36 am

    mhm…this is a tough one…i think if it was something we were adamant about he would be doing it regardless of what kind of fuss he was putting up (mind you my baby is only 10months old so i am speaking from experience). something like swimming i think is an important skill for him to know so as he got older and he didn’t want to do it….we would continue to push until he had the basics down. sometimes as parents we have to put our foot down just to show the child who is boss…it can set a precedence for other areas!

  • Reply
    July 19, 2013 at 2:09 pm

    I don’t have children so I might get dismissed but I hated all the stuff I had to do as a child: piano lessons, dance class, the band, etc. The ONLY thing I wanted to do was bounce a basketball & read fiction. I made straight A’s and was respectable, well mannered, and a “golden child” – didn’t give them any problems. Look what I’m doing now, exactly what I wanted to do then. Fitness and I’m still a nerd of sort (pharmacy). I still fall asleep at cultural events (even though I continue to go)…I said all that to say…I am 100% on board for what the child is interested in but there is always more to the story. For one exposure needs to happen but I just remember how I felt when I was faking playing the piano when I was supposed to be practicing because it was so boring & my mother always tells the story of the Thursday tummy aches. The doctor kept asking what happened on Thursdays. It was dance class. So we quit and the tummy aches went away. At such a young age, it was really giving me “anxiety” I suppose. It was making me sick.

    It sounds to me like you all have a game plan and I hope it works out for you. I remember him in your first day in the life post and and he is full of personality. He will be just fine with or without football.

    Have a great weekend!

  • Reply
    July 19, 2013 at 8:33 pm

    I grew up with parents who let me and my siblings try various sports – we all had some level of interest. As the eldest and only for 8 years I took swimming lessons regularly, played basketball, lacrosse, soccer and tennis, but as I became more independent and my younger siblings grew older they saw one of them start to excel in track and field and because of this and their hectic schedules (like how Kita mentioned), they silo-ed them into just that sport. Not all of them were happy about it but for two of them it led to track and field scholarships. From this I saw it is important to have a balance of foresight to see your children’s natural talents to cultivate as well as letting them experiment. It’s a tough job I agree!

  • Reply
    July 27, 2013 at 12:30 pm

    I have and I’d do it over again. My son wanted to play soccer because my daughter was playing so I signed him up. He loved going to practice but when it was game time, he never wanted to play unless he had the ball all the time. His first hatred was because he couldn’t touch the ball. After he got past that, he hated soccer because he never got a chance to get the ball or because someone took the ball from him. And he wanted to quit. He ran off the court and refused to get back on it. Luckily for him, it was almost the end of the game.

    He expressed to me that he didn’t want to play anymore. but quitting wasn’t an option. He had no other choice but to play and it wasn’t because of the money that would be wasted, but it was because I knew he’d learn valuable lessons like teamwork, good sportsmanship, and being attentive and confident and aggressive. Needless to say, his attitude changed and he can’t wait to play this fall.

  • Reply
    {kinda} Wordless Wednesday- Football Season | Lipgloss & Binky
    August 14, 2013 at 8:04 am

    […] Prior to my husband being named the coach of my son’s team I spoke about being a hypocrite and making my son play football this year. So far he is really shining and is proving my theory right. His dad has been working with him non […]

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