The Dad-Coach balance

I often marvel at dads that become coaches of their child’s team.  Most of the time,  these guys are just do it selflessly, because they have something to contribute and they want the team to have some direction.  Those dads do it out of the kindness of their own heart.  But some dads, they are seen as dads from hell.

I think being a coach is an awesome way to be involved in your daughter’s life as well as be a positive influence for the kids around you.  And it’s a big task.  Not only are you the guiding force for your child, but all the other girls on that team.  So it’s a dual opportunity to teach your daughter about having integrity and dealing with conflicts, but also having that same integrity and conflict resolution no matter who you deal with.  Way to go there, Super Dad.  And let’s face it, being a coach ain’t easy, but it sure is fun.

Click that link, if you didn’t.  It talks about the downside of coaching, which is sort of a dark place.  It’s from Tennis World USA and is mostly about tennis, but it does have the underlying theme of a dad’s role and influence on their daughters in sports.  The examples given in the article talk about Jennifer Capriati and others having “dads from hell” that pushed and coached them so hard that severe depression set in.  All over a fuzzy little ball!  I think if those dads knew it was going to push their daughters that far, they wouldn’t have pushed like that.  Maybe that’s just my hope.

And that’s TENNIS!  Think about the numerous sports that your daughter is involved in.  With you as a coach, it’s most likely you’ve got other players to develop as well as encourage your daughter.  That’s a difficult dance, my friend.

I think the “dads from hell” article is the exception, rather then the prominent situation.  Especially at a young age, Dads are diving in and giving of their own time and in some cases, money/resources.  I admit I haven’t gotten there, but I’d love to hear from dads that have!

So I ask the dads out there, do you coach your daughter?  How?  And how do you balance the “dad” in you with the “coach” in you?  What drives you to continue coaching?

Either way, thanks for being a dad…

– Scott –

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Amazing study on the role of Dads

Amazing Study on the Role of Dads

I just got done looking through this Pew Research publication on the comparison of roles between Dads in 1960 and today.  You can read the report yourself here.  The affects are surprising, but explainable, in my mind.

Back in 1960, 90% of kids were living with their dads, but many of those dads were not involved much.  That sort of fits the bill when I talk to people the generation growing up at the time.  Many times, the dad was working a blue collar job just to keep food on the table. Unlike today, when dad is working white collar jobs just to cover the exorbitant mortgage.  With that blue collar emphasis, dads were burnt OUT.  Laying brick all day is exhausting…..so I’ve been told.  Running outside right after dinner to ride bikes probably wasn’t on the top of a 1960s dad’s priority list.  But….Dad was still there…..

Fast forward to today and 1/4 (ONE QUARTER!!!) of Dads don’t live with their children.  By the data, it actually shows dads overall spending more time with kids than before, though.  Dads ARE taking a more active role (WAY TO GO, BOYS!) but that is underscored by the fact that they don’t live with their kids.  Most of the dads that lived separate had a primary contact method of email or phone calls.  I can understand that, but don’t discount a child’s need for that physical presence of her father.

You know my passion is time with daughters.  This next graph did encourage me.

Anyone want to guess what’s missing from that graph on Activities of Daily Life?  That’s right, 1 on 1 time with your child.  Specifically, a Daddy Daughter Date.

Guys, I know it’s tough when you’re seperated from your little princesses and you have to deal with your ex to get access to your kids, but don’t stop trying.  Don’t stop spending precious time with them.  Come on back for more Daddy Daughter Dates.  And if you’ve got an idea in your head, drop it in the comments section, because we’d love to hear from you.

– Thanks for being a Dad –

Scott

Bryan Adams shows off baby daughter

Now, I’m not a big fan of celebrity parents.  I know how little time I have to give to my kids (and how selfish I can be at times), so I have no idea how they actually make a true connection with their kids.

But I found this one sort of interesting.  Bryan Adams (yeah, the “but Iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii want to fall in love” guy) is a new dad.  Bryan, being a first time dad, decided to hide the little bundle of joy for a while.  I think that’s a very good idea given the paparazzi and all.  But, he finally decided to take her for a stroll.

And, he’s a a new dad at 51!  Come on, you have to admit that scares you a bit to think about being a dad for the first time at 51.  I envision breaking a hip while rolling on the floor with your child.  I know, I know: people that are 51 aren’t that old.  But just admit that chasing a toddler around would be a bit tougher with creaky bones.

If I could, I’d tell him, “Thanks for being a dad.  Glad that yooooooooooouuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuu finally fell in love.”

-Scott-