My child (11 yr old duaghter)seems to want to back out of situations that involve her being competitive. She's played organized soccer for over 10 seasons and I was her coach. She is a good player and was offered a contract on a team in a highly competitive league. Alot of pressure was put on her and she and I began to dislike the situation. She finished the fall season and she tried to transfer to the team where I was assistant coach for the spring season. The team that I was asst coach is also competitive but not as much pressure is placed on the players by the head coach. He's great with the players. Well, I am no longer asst. coach because of working a second job. The head coach would like for my daughter to be on his team. She now says that she dislikes the sport and she doesn't want to continue. She has a tendency to only want to do things if she has a friend involved in the same activity. In this case, she has friends on the team she would join. However, she cries and says she doesn't like it. She has however, committed to the head coach to play in a weekend tournament that she is now trying to back out of. We've discussed the situation and I told her that she needs to complete her promise to play. Should I make her stick to her promise? Should I be concerned about her backing out of competitive pressure situations?
It probably is sensible to have her fulfill her short-term commitment, to help her learn that there is an obligation to follow through on such promises. However, on the longer term, I would not pressure her, but rather try to find a less competitive situation for her to enjoy. There's no reason to worry about her - right now it sounds like she enjoys her activities for the pleasure they provide and the social interaction that surrounds them. Some kids by nature are not particularly competitive, and that's really OK. I wouldn't encourage you to try to make her into somebody other than who she is.
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