Soccer Parents have Big Balls

Not everyone knows this about me because normally I’m not one to brag about myself, but I’m a U8 Girls Soccer Coach. This is easily the most important thing that I’ve ever done in my life. In fact, I’m not really sure how I’ll survive the 5 year gap between my children where I’ll not be a U8 Girls Soccer Coach once Emma moves up to U10 Girls Soccer.

Back in the day when I was coaching competitive (trying to win) middle school and high school soccer, I had of course run across parents convinced that their kid was the next Freddy Adu or David Beckam. I just assumed this was perfectly natural behavior for parents. They had obviously spent too many hot afternoons in the sun watching soccer games and were a little addled.

This weekend was my first run-in with a Psycho Soccer Parent In Training. After screaming at their daughter long enough and with enough vitriol to make her cry at halftime, they informed me that my “strategy” of playing two defenders wasn’t going to score goals and we would lose every game.

– rage building … can’t maintain –

What the hell is wrong with these people?! That is your daughter out there, running around in the heat, trying to learn one of most difficult field games ever invented and you think the appropriate response is to yell at her until she cries? Have you lost your mind?!

I would love to round up every parent ever guilty of this and put them on a soccer field. I would make them play a game while I scream unhelpful nonsense at them, “Get the Ball!”, “Kick it!”, and my personal favorite from this weekend, “You’re not trying!” I understand that they are depressed and unhappy that their best days of competition are 100 lbs behind them, but go take it out on a treadmill, not your kid.

I’m not even that angry at the suggestion that my “strategy” wouldn’t be successful. When the sum total of your experience in soccer formations is limited to what the other volunteer soccer parents are doing, I’m not too intimidated. What angered me was the thinking that at the U8 level, we’re here to win games. Is there a lot of money to be made off of the skills of your 7 year old? Are major sponsors lining up to put them on a cereal box? Do you think that ANYONE will EVER care how your number one draft pick did on the U8 circuit?

How are these people able to get through a work day without electrocuting themselves, driving into a tree, or otherwise causing massive problems for anyone in their proximity is beyond me. They obviously lack a very basic ability to appreciate what’s right in front of them.

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3 thoughts on “Soccer Parents have Big Balls

  1. rockwalker

    Of course this was not the “in class” version, livebait! I always feel constrained to edit myself when I’m talking in class. I wouldn’t have brought it up at all if our referee hadn’t been sitting right in front of me.

    I often wonder what I’d be like in a class of adults… with my mouth I’d probably never be allowed to speak in Carteret County again.

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  2. mav3n

    Just some FYI from wikipedia – thought that it would add to your sense of justice. . .

    “A helicopter parent is a term for a person who pays extremely close attention to his or her child or children, particularly at educational institutions. They rush to prevent any harm or failure from befalling them or letting them learn from their own mistakes, sometimes even contrary to the children’s wishes. They are so named because, like a helicopter, they hover closely overhead, rarely out of reach, whether their children need them or not. In Scandinavia, this phenomenon is known as curling parenthood – describing parents who sweep all obstacles off ahead of their children.

    An extension of the term, “Black Hawks,” has been coined for those who cross the line from a mere excess of zeal to unethical behavior such as writing their children’s college admission essays. (The reference is to the military helicopter of the same name.)”

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  3. livebait1

    I had the pleasure of the pulsating wind from three such “Black Hawks” today. I think they got the tip that I might take cover from this LA Times story…

    Helicopter’s wind gives deer a push
    January 19, 2007

    The pilot of a TV news helicopter used the wind from the aircraft’s rotor to push a stranded deer to safety after it lost its footing on a frozen lake and could not get up.

    A small crowd had gathered to watch the deer struggling on Lake Thunderbird. With the helicopter’s camera rolling, KWTV pilot Mason Dunn used the wind from the rotor to push the deer, sending it sliding on its belly across the ice until it reached shore and ran into a nearby wooded area.

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