Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Are We Teaching Our Kids to Never Give Up?

"Against all odds."

"The night looks darkest before the dawn."

"Never give up, never back down."

These are all common phrases that we may have either heard or used at some point in our lives.  We may even use them with our children.  Whether it be learning to tie their shoes, ride their bike, read a new word, do their homework, learn a new sport or even clean their room we need to be their cheerleader - encouraging them to continue no matter how difficult.  Are our actions supporting those words?

Several weeks ago while watching CNN Headline News with Robin Meade a story about a high school football team came on.  The team had done well with two wins when they realized that the next opposing team was composed of kids who were considered much better players.  Their parents instead of encouraging them to do their best whatever the outcome forced the coach to forfeit the game for fear their children would be humiliated.  Not every situation in life is "our size"; not everything is easy.  We are going to fall on our faces, make mistakes and get hurt and our mommies and daddies aren't going to be there to pick us up, dust us off or bail us out.  What have these children learned?  The lesson these parent's are conveying is that it's OK to cop out and give up if the task seems insurmountable.

  • WHDH-TV - RI football team forfeits game, opponent 'too good'

    Oct 5, 2010 ... RI football team forfeits game, opponent 'too good' ... will not get to play this Friday night because their opponents say they're too good. ...

    It is true that there is a possibility of injury, but if that is a problem then why are you allowing your kids to play such a dangerous sport.  Another post for another day, and I digress. . . 

    I come from a school where my graduating class was only 47.  The guys in my class were not huge and frankly, none of the guys from the previous four years were that big either. They always did well in basketball though.  We did not have a football program so basketball was the sport of choice.  At least once if not twice that I can remember while I was in school the Varsity basketball team made it to the State finals and played hard against, much taller, faster, higher jumping guys.  Were they humiliated when they lost - NO!  They came back speaking positively about the experience.  They came back with an immense amount of self respect for not walking away when the task seemed too big.

    As parents we need to remember that stepping in every time to "handle" our childrens' difficult situations teaches them nothing and leaves them handicapped to deal with the world outside of our loving arms.  Actually, I really can't call doing that loving because love entails also teaching them how to survive in a world that will eventually not include us.  There are no bosses, coworkers or even spouses who will be "kind" and let our kids give up without there being serious consequences.  Giving up on a sports game now may seem ok, but the message it sends is detrimental.
  • 1 comment:

    1. "Never Give Up"... That's really good to be ignored.


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