Parenting Lessons From Andy Griffith
During a binge watching session of Andy Griffith on Netflix, Season 4, Episode 8, I was reminded me of how difficult it can be for young people to handle failure. Long story short, Opie brought home his All A’s report card, only to find out the next day Ms. Crump made a mistake and he in fact did not receive All A’s. However, the doting was well on its way and after being tagged as a genius and showered with praise and gifts, the arduous task of telling the truth proved to be to difficult.
Far too often, the doting and praise for superior performance on the field can prove to be detrimental when levels of success can’t be sustained. Our children sometimes equate their on the field success with the pride we show in them.
As you may recall, the end of this particular Andy Griffith episode includes Opie running away from home because he felt he didn’t live up to being a genius and therefore, how could his father be proud of him? Do young athletes have similar feelings? Sure they do. A poor performance on the field or court can be devastating for a young person who believes they don’t possess the qualities needed to make their loved ones proud of them.
In these situations, let’s remind our kids, like Andy did to Opie, we are proud of them, win or lose. Sports only lasts so long and at some point, the weekends are gone and we’re forced to focus on our lawn or cross off tasks on our honey do list. Many lessons can be learned on the field/court, let’s make one of them that our love and pride for our kids is not about winning or losing, but playing hard and leaving their best effort on the court/field.