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Forcing sports?

My almost 11 yr old has been playing flag football then progressed to tackle. He hates it but my ex husband is a huge football nut and insists on it. My son loves science and cooking and art. He is not a tackle football kinda guy. He actually wants to try karate, which we will do for him, but my ex is insisting that he also continue football.

I am on very good terms with my ex and am gently trying to get him to see my son's POV but I don't want to bully him in any way. We are both Noah's parents so I feel like he has just as much say in our son's extra curriculars.

Guess I'm just looking for advice on how to handle this. My son is scared of disappointing my ex but my ex knows our son doesn't want to play & is pushing anyway. How should I handle this?

Answer Question

Asked by Tesserae at 1:57 PM on Aug. 6, 2012 in General Parenting

Level 17 (4,001 Credits)
Answers (20)
  • I may say:
    By not listening to Noah now, you are teaching him to not come to you later.

    Answer by feralxat at 1:59 PM on Aug. 6, 2012

  • if your ex knows the kid doesn't like playing, doesn't want to play anymore, and is interested in feeling his hand at other activities, IMO, he's being the selfish ass to force him to play a sport he doesn't like.
    if i were you, i'd put a stop to it.

    Answer by dullscissors at 2:00 PM on Aug. 6, 2012

  • I told him that on the phone today. That he is taking power away from Noah and showing him that his words & feelings mean nothing. Noah is actually in therapy partly because he lets people push him around.

    Comment by Tesserae (original poster) at 2:02 PM on Aug. 6, 2012

  • Tell your ex that it is mean to force a sport a kid hates, its just stupid, he wont play up to his potential if he were to like it, and its a waste of time and money.

    Answer by minimo77 at 2:05 PM on Aug. 6, 2012

  • This is the very reason i hate it when people try to live their dream throug their kids.They think because they loved a certain things their kids do too,so they put them in there and try to say that they do love it.BOO!!! to people like that.This is the rule we have at our house,we will only do stuff that's asked.We don't force anything including sports.We have an artist,scientist,story writer and we have the request to play golf...i always wanna teach that you have to do what you love and do what you are interested in,because they aren't living my life or dreams they have to live their own.Encourage your kid to tell his dad how he feels about this.If he can't tell his dad something this simple,he won't see him as someone he can trust but rather someone he has to please.

    Answer by GivingTreeMommy at 2:05 PM on Aug. 6, 2012

  • Can you and the Ex- go to a session and have the therapist help work this out?
    So the kid will feel safe and empowered?

    Answer by feralxat at 2:07 PM on Aug. 6, 2012

  • If your son won't talk to his dad perhaps he'd feel more comfortable writing a letter to him. Either way I'd take him out. By not playing with his whole heart I think is asking for him to get hurt. My dh played football in high school but even he admits that IT HURTS to get hit even with pads on. He's now encouraging our sons to play golf which they absolutely love. I think they'd hate football because neither one can stand getting hurt.

    Answer by baconbits at 2:10 PM on Aug. 6, 2012

  • He (my son) is so sensitive! He was depressed after talking to my ex on the phone about football the other day. He doesn't want to disappoint him. And he's a different kid here. When he's at my house he beebops around signing and dancing and expressing himself. When he's at his dad's he doesn't do that. I will talk with my son and try to get him to flat out tell my ex that football is a no-go. He has told him before but my ex doesn't seem to feel like his reasons are valid.

    Comment by Tesserae (original poster) at 2:10 PM on Aug. 6, 2012

  • The joint therapist appt is a great idea as well as the written letter, thanks ladies. I just want Noah to be happy....

    Comment by Tesserae (original poster) at 2:12 PM on Aug. 6, 2012

  • Your ex is trying to force his son to live out HIS dreams and using his son for his own ego boost. Your son is old enough to decide. Forcing a child to stay in any sport is wrong. Tell your ex your son will no longer take part in foot ball and will be checking into other interests. he may fight it but give him no choice. It should be up to your son- NOT your ex to decide what he choses when it comes to this.

    Answer by LeJane at 2:13 PM on Aug. 6, 2012

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