Hopefully that little boy in the poem didn't strike out... if he knows what's good for him!
Humor, Parenting

Ask Bitch’in Suburbia: Youth Sports Edition

Self-appointed youth sports “expert” and general baller, Bitch’in Suburbia, takes your questions and tackles your problems with slam-dunk, gut-checking, hardball advice.

Dear Bitch’in Suburbia:

I’m pregnant, and as a gift, my husband fully decked out the nursery… all with a baseball theme! First off, we don’t even know if it’s a boy or a girl yet, and secondly, although I know he played Little League as a kid, other than watching baseball on TV, I had no idea he was such a baseball nut! Should I be concerned?

Signed, In a Pickle

Dear Pickle:

Concerned? You should be GRATEFUL! No pesky choices once junior is three about what direction to take: if it’s a boy, it’s baseball, and if it’s a girl, it’s softball. Womb to tomb, the key to lifelong success nowadays is to specialize from the starting gates, so good for you and your fetus!

I’ll bet your man had the foresight to knock you up in the April too, giving your child a January birthday, so that by the time the kid is in his/her last year of Little League/12-U, s/he can be the oldest kid for in the age group — giving him/her size/strength advantage! (Double-check his math with this league age calculator.) By the way, that timing might be different for girls, but since softball isn’t even an Olympic sport anymore, never mind have a pro league of their own, who really cares?

Dear Bitch’in Suburbia:

My 9 year old wants to dance, play soccer and maybe a couple of other things too–with occasional time to see a friend. But her dance teachers and soccer couches get so pissed every time there is a conflict — it’s ridiculous! I mean, she’s not going to be a professional, but enjoys each.

Signed, Full Dance Card

Dear Dance Card:

I’m sorry… did you just say SHE’S NOT GOING TO BE A PROFESSIONAL? What is wrong with you, woman? If you can’t visualize her performing in the New York City Ballet or playing in the World Cup, or better yet, both, then who is she, and what kind of parent are you? Toughen up, pop open a few Red Bulls for you and the kid, and get that child ready to roll from activity to activity. And forget friends — that’s what teammates are for. Sure they’ll vie for your kid’s spot or position, and their parents will stab your child in the back over being top of the pyramid (hullo, have we learned nothing from Dance Moms?), but in the end, it’s all about sacrifice. Do everything ’til it hurts — that’s why G-d invented Bengay and graces you with the ability to take out a line of credit on your house so that you can afford the elite level of everything for your precious baby.

Dear Bitch’in Suburbia:

My daughter was a superstar on our rec league team, but now that she’s playing club, the coach never puts her in! Her confidence is at an all-time low, and I’m not seeing anyone out there that’s any better than her. I’m debating have a heart-to-heart with the coach, but I’m concerned that might backfire. What should I do?

Signed, Bench Warmer Baby

Dear Bench Warmer:

Never, EVER question a coach! That’s rule #1 in youth sports. Rule #2 is …. never, EVER question a coach! They know exactly what they’re doing, clearly — and everyone knows that the best way to build self-confidence is to weather grueling schedules, suffer through multiple indignities, and learn that your voice is insignificant. Works well for cults, too. Now, don’t you feel better?

Dear Bitch’in Suburbia:

I am in deep turmoil — my son is the goalie on his hockey team, and in the last second of the last game of the season, the other team scored, won, and dashed our chances at play-offs. It was an impossible save, and yet I still overheard several grown men calling my son names he should NEVER be called, and at least three moms were sobbing. I wanted to console my child, but it was hard to do in the wake of such an emotional outburst, so instead I found myself apologizing to the other parents and to my son’s teammates. Now, days later, I’m still deeply ashamed of myself and can’t even look at my son in the eyes. Help!

Signed, Pucked Up in Poughkeepsie

Dear Pucked Up:

Put on some sunglasses, grab your kid by the scruff, and get his butt to off-season coaching with the nearest retired NHL goalie. Be sure to pay him extra, and consider having him escort your child to try-outs in the fall to send the message loud and clear that you have made the necessary adjustments and investment so that your kid won’t puck up… ever again!

Dear Bitch’in Suburbia:

My kids’ sports schedules are absolutely insane. From pre-dawn skating to late nights on the field, they are working their buns off while I’m freezing mine off waiting and watching them. The children are exhausted, and I’m right there with them, but I also know if they miss practice, they will be penalized. Any thoughts on how we can get some relief? Their schedules are driving me crazy!

Signed, Running on Empty

Dear Running,

What’s crazy is that you clearly haven’t discovered 5-Hour Energy shots yet — what, you’ve never nuked a 7-Eleven breakfast sandwich (the breakfast of champions) or a bean and cheese burrito (the dinner of winners) on the way to/from practice? If you still need relief, you can chase it all with the little roll of Tums that you should be sure to grab as you checkout. That should do it!

Dear Bitch’in Suburbia:

I don’t think I’ve ever experienced such earth-shattering highs and soul crushing lows as when I watch my child compete. The agony and the ecstasy are almost unbearable — how will I ever survive this roller coaster of emotions?

Signed, On the Bleachers’ Edge

Dear Bleachers:

Good news — you are closer to Youth Sports Nirvana than you realize! Just re-read what you said — it’s all about you! Not your child, but YOU, the parent. Once you fully embrace this core concept of youth sports, you’ve won!

So if you see me sitting in the stands, wagging a giant #1 foam middle finger at the crowd, just know that winners never quit, quitters never win, and the difference between the two is the stamina, willpower, and sheer brute force of a loving parent.

Please note: The views and opinions expressed in this article are satirical, just in case you couldn’t tell, and also just in case my kids’ coaches are reading this. (Just kidding! Not really… )

For more on youth sports from Bitch’in Suburbia, check out Go for the Gold and Parental Misguidance.

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