This is our weekly post for parents. But, lots of teen readers may like this. Why? Because they are sick and tired of their parents trying to live their dreams through them. I saw this all the time as a teacher. Students were forced into activities or other things they didn’t like because of their parents. Many of the young people didn’t even understand why their parents forced them to do things the young people hated! In many cases, it’s because the parents want to live through their kids.
My dad played baseball in high school and was a star. He also was great in college and even played briefly in the minor leagues of baseball. You’d think he would’ve pressured me to play that sport. But, he didn’t. On the other hand, some guys I played sports with (I chose football) had annoying dads who wanted them to be the second coming of Jim Brown (look him up). In every case, their dads weren’t good at sports. They were just trying to live through their children.
If you are a parent reading this, you may not have fulfilled all of your goals in life. In fact, you likely haven’t since we all have things we wish we would’ve accomplished. However, if your dream was to play for the New York Yankees, there’s no reason that has to be your child’s goal as well. If you aren’t living through your kid in sports, don’t think you’re getting off the hook! Women often live through their children in other ways, including steering their daughters to certain types of men.
How can you tell if you’re living through your kid? Look at what you push your child to do and the extent to which you do it. Do your child’s activities closely mirror what you wish you could’ve accomplished? Do you get far more passionate about your children’s sports and hobbies than your child? Do you find yourself getting upset when your son or daughter isn’t into an activity like you? If these sentences describe you, chances are you are one of those parents who live through their children.
There’s nothing wrong with steering your kids towards your interests. But, I’ve seen some real nastiness out of parents who live through through their children. A few parents had to be thrown out of games I was involved in. Almost always, they were being nasty not only to other children, but their own as well.
If you are a parent who tends to live through his or her child, stop right now. Pursue your dreams as an adult and be excellent now. You’ll be a better parent and role model and allow your children to find their path and pursue their own dreams. You may not end up as a shortstop on the Cincinnati Reds, but you could be a great parent, husband, and overall success.
If you are a man, our website, The Popular Man, will help you be successful and excellent.