Archive for November 18, 2011

Guilty Mom Complex

Today’s blog is meant to answer a parenting question from one of my readers. “Barb” asks, “How can I not feel guilty as a mom because I can’t do it all?” She is married, works full time, and has 3 children. She feels she never has the time to accomplish all the things she wants to do in her professional and personal life.

Barb’s story and general question is all too familiar for a lot of us- not just moms. Some of us struggle to put in the time needed at work with the time wanted at home. Keeping the house clean, maintaining a social life, and spending quality time with our children/spouse is hard. Oh, I almost forgot that some of us would like to do more volunteer work in our places of worship or communities. The burden can feel very heavy at times.

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Protecting Children from Monsters

In light of the headlines coming from Penn. State University and the horrific events which appear to have happened, I’d like to relay a quick story and the lesson I learned when it comes to the suspected abuse of children.

I don’t want to assume everyone knows this story so here’s the short version. An assistant coach named Jerry Sandusky is being charged with sexually abusing minors in the locker room of Penn State. These actions happened on several occasions over the course of years. Coach Joe Paterno was notified of what was going on but to what extent isn’t clear. It was enough though for him to report the matter to his athletic director. What happened afterwards is nothing short of a major cover up. The weeks and months ahead though will most likely shed more light on what is already a heinous tragedy. Here is a timeline as to what has happened. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/11/09/penn-state-scandal-timeline-jerry-sandusky_n_1084204.html

In my opinion, this is a sad time for Paterno because of the legacy he built at Penn State. But, it also reminds me of a story that happened in my teaching career which could have served Paterno well.

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How Far is Too Far?

Last Tuesday, I wrote a post called Sports Leagues for Children.  The article highlighted the fact that all sports leagues aren’t created equally.  Some are more competitive than others.  Depending on your child and their stage of development, non-competitive leagues have some advantages worth considering.  Here is a link to the article for more information. http://www.claytonpaulthomas.com/archives/628  That post leads me into today’s story.

Last week, a story broke out of Collier, Tennessee of a high school football coach named Shawn Abel who resigned after a profanity laced tirade (before a football game) was recorded and placed on Youtube.  For more details on the specifics of the story, here’s the link.  I will warn you though the actual clip is vulgar and children should not be around when you choose to listen to it.  http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/11/01/shawn-abel-collierville-football-rant_n_1069695.html.

After listening to the rant, my wife was convinced Coach Abel should have been fired immediately.  For those of you who agree with her, I can’t blame you.  The tirade was awful and deeply personal.  Others of you may think this is a free speech issue and the rant was in a locker room which has closed doors for a reason.  It’s hard for me to argue this point as well.

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Sports Leagues for Children

I feel that sports are a great addition to the maturation process for any child capable of playing.  But where a child plays is equally as important as the sport itself.

Some leagues are geared to be competitive.  Catholic school sports (in my area) are the first that come to mind-especially in the middle school years.  Their goal is to win each game and play the best players in order to achieve their means.  Systems are taught but all players aren’t “developed.” The players that coaches concentrate on are the ones again to achieve the final goal of winning. It seems to me the development of a player is more in the hands of the parents.  This was true when I was young and I haven’t seen evidence to the contrary.

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