Your child announces that he wants to give up his martial arts lessons or quit his school soccer team. He says it’s not fun, he wants to try something else. Do you give in and respect his choices, or do you insist that he stick it out? Here are some things you may want to consider.
First find out the reason for your child’s sudden desire to quit. Is he really bored with it, or is he frustrated or does he feel pressured by expectations? You may also want to fish for any signs that he is having problems with his team mates or coach.
Also look at other things your child is going through. This may be a sign of overall stress, maybe difficulty at school or exhaustion. What is his current workload? Or what has he been going through the last few weeks? Is he fatigued and on the brink of a sports injury? Does he want to quit or does he just want to take a short break?
If you can’t figure out the problem talk to the child’s coach or teacher and observe a few practice sessions. See what his relationship with his coach is like. Do they seem to have a rapport, is the coach encouraging, or do you sense a tension or dislike? Is the coach too hard on him? You may want to talk to other parents about what their children say about the coach or the team.
And remember kids can be oversensitive. If your child complains his coach was ‘mean’ find out if this was a one-time thing or a regular pattern. And what does ‘mean’ exactly…mean? Did the coach lose his temper once? Or chastise him for a mistake? Or is it something more serious like blatant favoritism?