Every sports parent wants to see his child succeed. You want your kids to get playing time; and some of you want your kids to get a lot of playing time.
Some of you are like playing-time junkies. If your child doesn’t play a certain amount, you don’t get your fix and the withdrawal isn’t pretty.
I suffered from that addiction. It was hard watching my kids sit on the bench when I felt they should be playing. I’ve agonized, lost sleep, wanted to chew the coach out, and even shed tears. Yes, I’ve been a pretty intense sports parent.
But I finally reached a stopping point. My two youngest kids are playing college sports and I want to be done with stressing over their playing time. Just plain tired of it. I guess you could say I want to be free of my addiction.
My son is a senior; he has one more year of college sports. Then he looks for a job and begins a new life of living on his own. Once he’s graduated, playing time will be a moot point.
My daughter is a sophomore. She has three more years and then she begins her career. When she goes to apply for a job or finds a husband, she will not be drilled on how many minutes she played her sport or how much time she sat the bench.
In the overall scheme of life, playing time is not really so important.
Let me repeat that: in the overall scheme of life, playing time is not so important!
Right now, I’m more concerned that my young adults grow tough, that they continue to learn to fight and work hard, that they have mental and physical victories, that they learn how to be selfless, humble, loving, and strong. That they develop good friendships with teammates and coaches.
This whole process of playing sports–unless your child go on to the pros–is meaningless if your child gets nothing out of it but a lot of playing time.
If your child is young, just starting out, please, please learn from my mistakes. Don’t stress about playing time and sports issues that will not matter in 5 or 10 years. Don’t become a playing-time junkie.
Focus instead on things that will help your child develop character and strength that will be with him for a lifetime.
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