By Dr. Ron Taffel, Family Therapist
My daughter just told me that she wants to quit her soccer team. She said this through tears, then went on to explain that, in her opinion, she's not good enough to play on the team. Apparently, the coach yelled at her in front of the other kids for not trying hard enough.
I'm in a quandary as to what to do. I don't want to force her to continue with something if she really doesn't want to (I was in many similar situations myself as a kid and know what that feels like). However, I think that if she tried a little harder, she would do just fine. I am worried that if I let her quit that I will send a message that if something is too hard, whether it's academics or sports, it's okay to give up. She's used to doing well with little to no effort. Working hard to achieve a level of skill or mastery is a foreign concept to her. Should I push her to work harder? Or should I let her quit?
Ah, this is one of the trickiest ongoing decisions a parent must make over and over again. I immediately relate to it with our own children. Here's what may work for you. Speak to your daughter's coach first. Find out what happened in this incident without putting the coach on the defensive. Remember, with teachers, coaches and other responsible adults in our kids' lives, you're always better off creating an ally. Explain your quandary to the coach and the two of you may come up with a small adjustment-coach's tone, whom she's paired off with, when/how instruction is offered. It's amazing how a child's feelings toward sticking it out can change with these simple mid-course corrections. "Trying hard" in this case means that we parents try to help coaches and kids adapt to each other a little, then we can ask the same kind of "trying" from our kids.
Advice from our experts is not a substitute for professional diagnosis or treatment from a health-care provider or learning expert familiar with your unique situation. We recommend consulting a qualified professional if you have concerns about your child's condition.
Sign up for our free newsletter and we'll send you
more just like it every week.
Thank you! You will begin to receive newsletters from us shortly.
Great work! Only one more step. Now we just need you to verify your email address. Please click on the link in the email we just sent you to complete your registration.
Great work! Only one more step. Now we just need you to verify your email address. Please click on the link in the email we just sent you to submit your review.
Please click on the link in the verification email we just sent you to complete your change of email address.
Whoops! It looks like we still need to verify your email. To do so, please click on the link in the email we sent you. Can't find the e-mail? Click the button below and we'll send you a new one.
Thanks for registering. Welcome to GreatSchools, the largest online community committed to improving educational outcomes through parental involvement.
Thanks for verifying your updated email address.
Oops! You haven't verified your email address yet. To do so, please click on the link in the email we sent you. Can't find the email? Click the button below to receive a new one.
Oops! That email verification link has expired. Please click the button below to receive a new one.
Create an account to submit your answers.
Sign in with an existing GreatSchools account or using Facebook:
Your review has been posted to GreatSchools.
Share with friends! Post your opinion of on Facebook.
Welcome to GreatSchools!
For principals and school officials, we offer a special Enhanced School Profile (ESP) which allows you to update and add information about your school, as well as respond to reviews. If you are a school official, click Continue to start.
Please note that it can take up to 48 hours for your comment to be posted to our site. While you're here, we'd like to invite you to fill out a survey on your school's programs, activities, and extracurriculars. It only takes a few minutes and will help parents get a full picture of your school.
Get started now! You have successfully registered and can now start updating your Official School Profile. The information you provide is extremely valuable in helping parents and students learn more about your school, so thanks for taking the time!
Thank you for registering as a school leader. We just need to verify your email address. We've sent you an email - please click on the link in that message to get started editing your school's information!
Thanks! We just sent you an email – please click on the link in the email to post your answers.
Get timely updates for , including performance data and recently posted user reviews.