Don't be this parent:

Last week was fall break for my high school, and the freshmen did not have a dedicated practice but instead were invited to participate with the varsity. Sadly, only a few did come and not all the boys who should've been there were. Still, my TE did play a good deal in last Thursday's JV game (photo above). It was a good learning experience for him. After the game I asked him how it went, mostly because of where we were sitting in the stands, I couldn't really see too much of the game.

He said: "Well, that guy was so strong and fast and I really couldn't do anything at all against him."

I said: "We learn different things in every game.... and it'll be off to the weight room with you this winter and spring."

The ugly thing I learned during the game was a result of my choice to support the boys as a fan. All the varsity coaches came to the game, but all stood on the sideline even if they were not participating in the coaching. I had asked Josh to come because we haven't seen each other much, and that was a mistake for both of us.

What I heard was shocking.... one parent heckled her kid the entire game. It went something like this every time he came out of the game:

"Hey 78, quit crying like a baby and block someone!"
"That's a terrible block 78!"
"Hey 78, get off the line, you're embarrassing yourself"

Now, in all fairness, I've had a coach use this kind of style to motivate, and it was funny until it was you he was talking to, but the way she was yelling, what she was saying (which I feel like was worse than what I can remember) and the constant heckling was horrible. I can't even properly express how bad I felt for the kid during the whole game.

Afterwards, I went down to the field and I made a point to tell the kid he had made a great block on one of our kick returns (which he did - flattened another boy).

Still, I guess when I was thinking about it, the quieter parents might be better: there's that possibility that the kid dreads the entire ride home for hearing nothing but negativity that the parent didn't yell from the stands, so I'm not sure which is worse.

Suffice it to say that I will, in the future, be on the sideline and if Josh attends any games, he can be in the press box as to avoid as much hearing of those comments as possible.

I just feel bad for the kids. If it was me, I'd say, "to hell with football" and that is a damn shame. Especially because I know how great football is for me and how great it can be for them.

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