Opinion | Sexuality

Why We Really Put Our Kids in Sports

Our goodhearted support prioritizes athleticism more than we think.
Why We Really Put Our Kids in Sports
Image: Stu Steeger / Flickr

When my youngest son finished second at his first-ever cross-country meet, I nearly wept with joy. After years of club soccer and dabbling in lacrosse, baseball, and basketball, my 13-year-old kid was competing in my sport—the one I’d been doing for almost 35 years—and succeeding. What could be better?

As his season progressed, I became keenly interested in his races, split times, and personal records. I helped as a course monitor for local meets, so I could watch his races more closely. When he finished a race, my first question was, “What was your time?” I already knew the answer, of course, having used a stopwatch to track his performance, which I would religiously check later against the state rankings for middle school cross-country.

In other words, I had become one of those parents.

If you’ve spent any time around youth sports, as a kid or as an adult, you probably know what I mean by those parents: the ones who seem overly invested in their children’s ...

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Posted:March 14, 2016
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