Life as a Soccer Mom: When the team just doesn't gel

Filed under: Activities: Babies, Development/Milestones: Babies

The youth soccer teams in our area are designed so that they have tow age groups on every team. My son is currently in the U14 bracket, so this means that the team is comprised of 12 and 13 year-old boys. This also means that every year one age bracket graduates to the next level of play and another one moves on to the team. If all teams were the same and all children had the same athletic and sportsmanship abilities this would not be an issue. But when one year the team has leadership, continuity and a winning streak and the next year it doesn't, this becomes a problem. This is exactly what has happened on my son's team. Last year the team had direction and great respect for each other. It was an absolute thrill to watch them play every weekend. Unfortunately, this year is much different. The stronger players have graduated and the younger players have brought with them an influx of discontent and chaos. My son is saddened and frustrated by the mess and often vents his frustrations after each game.

The coach is a great guy and really trying to encourage the boys to bond and work with one another. While I believe his efforts are great i also think there is a lesson to be learned in all of this. My kids are not always going to be on the winning team. they are not always going to like or appreciate their team mates. And there will be times when they lose time and again. But these point are true for much of life. If they choose to go to college they might despise their professor or hate their roommates. They might someday find their boss to be a blithering idiot. But in every case they will have to learn to adjust and function. I think starting on a small level in a relatively safe arena, such as a soccer team, is a great place to learn about getting along for the sake of functioning.

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AdviceMama Says:
Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.