*Pictured above: Some cool kids from Flickr, whom I’ve never met, getting ready for the high school dance.
My seventeen-year-old son came home Saturday night from his high school winter formal with a look that could summon the dead. Misery. Pure, unconditional misery.
Parent-teacher conferences are fast approaching, and We the Average parents and students need to remember where we rank in the Pre-K through 12 hierarchy. Check out The Onion’s feature on an extraordinary mother who is working tirelessly to find the right pre-school for her perfect child.
True story. A perfect mom, whose son is in my son’s 11th grade class, posted fifteen pictures of her daughter on Facebook, after the twelve-year-old won two gold medals at an elite gymnastics meet. Here is one of the follow-up posts from another dad.
It might not be an issue for We the Average, who didn’t get the invitations to “select” soccer teams or have the money to pay for elite pitching lessons. But a great article in Parenting magazine reveals what we’ve known all along: competitive sports at too young of an age cause immediate and long-term problems, not just for the super kid but for all of us.
The question is, will parents listen?
“What parent isn’t bursting with pride when a crowd of spectators erupts in cheers as her child makes a game-saving goal, hit, or catch?”
That’s the crux of it, isn’t it? The problem is We the Average parents have to endure their antics in a culture that rewards winning at all costs. Worse, our children become collateral damage when “winning” doesn’t stop at the goal line but seeps into the classroom and onto the playground, where there is no escape.
Parenting has taken on a whole new meaning in the video of the kids from Covington High, a predominately white Catholic school in Kentucky, who became embroiled in a national controversy on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C. Rest assured, I’m not going to touch the politics with a ten-foot pole, except to agree with the people on both sides who say, it’s complicated.
What I will address is how this issue has affected me, an average parent. Specifically, what if that teenage boy was mine? Or what if my son was in the crowd?