He’s Just A Little Boy

Yesterday I came across this sign on Facebook {source unknown}:

Now that I’m a parent, I see things differently.

I remember being the child on the ball field, hearing parents from the sidelines screaming at their child for missing a ball.

It’s very intimidating.

My parents were always supportive and cheered me on. It didn’t matter if I missed the ball or struck out, I always knew they were still proud of me.

I vowed to be like that for my two boys.

Last year I wrote a post about giving my son a voice and how we let him make his own decision even at a young age.

This year he told me he wanted to play t-ball and he is really loving it.

My husband and I tell him before every game, “As long as you have fun, that’s all that matters.”

I love seeing my son give me a big smile and wave from the field. It shows me he is having fun and at the end of the day that’s all that matters.

Yes, there are still parents that yell at their child and it makes me cringe every time.

That’s why I believe the sign above should be on every ball field – no matter the age, no matter the sex.

Meet Tina @ Life Without Pink

2013 Family Expert for P&G's Have You Tried This Yet? Trend Trio, Tina is a mom of two active boys and the founder of Life Without Pink, a mom's guide for raising boys. You’ll find everything from cool gadgets, trend reports, daily adventures, travel ideas to personal stories, and tips for parenting boys.


    • says

      Thank you! I haven’t encountered too many crazy parents {just a few} but know there will be more down the line. As long as my boys know that we are proud of them no matter what, that’s all that matters :)

  1. says

    This is just so true in youth sports in general anymore. I sat at my daughter’s field hockey game last night and just wanted to start handing out lollypops to the parents around me – just to get them to stop yelling. If you ask the kids – they just want to play the game – and more often than not, they don’t really care if they won or lost – unless its Mom and Dad they are trying to please.

    Keep doing what you are doing, and your son will continue to play for the love of the sport and learn some great life lessons in the process!
    Char´s last blog post ..American Girl’s McKenna Shoots for the Stars will Debut before Olympics

  2. says

    Awww…that sign brought tears to my eyes. And it’s so VERY true. I think no matter what sport they are in they are only “just boys”. We live in a college town that is football crazy and during those games the words that are said to those boys make my blood boil. Because at the end of the day it’s just a game, and they are just boys. Here’s to keeping it FUN!!!
    Brook @ Redhead Reverie´s last blog post ..I Forgot:Just Write

  3. Ann Atwood - Grandmother says

    What a wonderful and oh so true poem. Since it’s not politically correct to pray or say
    the Pledge maybe this poem should be read before all little league games. Not only that, give a copy to all coaches and parents!

  4. says

    Dear Tina,
    This is a subject very near and dear to my heart. I have raised 3 wonderful sons. One was a very casual athlete. He is 25 and an artist/musician. I have identical twin sons who are freshmen in college and were athletic forever. They are extremely capable players and played basket ball and soccer when they were little and at around 10 stayed with soccer. I have heard the nastiest talk on ball fields. That sign is a good reminder for all, including coaches, that these little fellows are just that little. And FYI, the unkind words still hurt when in High School. Many schools will ask people to leave if they get carried away, but many do not. Coaches are often the worst offenders. I am happy to tell you my sons are both playing soccer for their college,and still love it (at least most of the time).
    If your sons continue to play, get ready for some fun times and some real challenges!

  5. says

    I saw you post this on FB and shared it on my wall too. We recently started Landon in 3-year-old soccer and I could not believe some parents. They were yelling at their kids on the sidelines. Brow-beating them because they weren’t playing up to their parents’ standards. Awful. We too tell Landon to just have fun with it!
    molly´s last blog post ..coming home

  6. says

    You wouldn’t believe the shouting match I got into with a father a few years ago. My son was on the soccer field, and wasn’t playing up to this man’s standards, I guess, since he kept shouting, “get that kid off the field! He’s costing us the game!”

    I almost slugged him.

    I asked him to be quiet, that was my son, and he said, “your son doesn’t have any business being on the field if he’s not going to play his heart out.”

    It was almost a fist fight.

    I wish I would have slugged him, although, with an attitude like his, I’m sure he would’ve hit me back.

    It’s just a game, people. JUST A GAME.
    Alexandra´s last blog post ..What It Takes To Make A Memory

  7. Mellisa Button says

    This is wonderful. I have a nine year old football lover, and coincidentally even I tell him that it is up to him to have fun and enjoy whatever he does.
    As for the sign, I just wish every parent would understand what that means.

    Thanks for sharing.

    Mellisa Button´s last blog post ..website

  8. A mom from Louisiana says

    I LOVE this sign!!! I wish the kids could read it before every game to the people in the stands. My oldest dropped out of sports when he was about 8 because of this very thing, he was not the best athlete on the team but he loved the sport and being part of a TEAM. It’s really sad because in high school they would have loved to have added him to the Football roster, but he refused for he hasn’t felt sure of himself since. He’s now in college and is a struggling student with only a few friends, but he is a wonderful young man that anyone would be proud of to have as a son. If only they had stopped criticizing him he may have been a great ball player in something besides baseball. He may have learned how to work as a team and Not as a loner. I know my son is not the first boy that this happened to, but it would be nice for him to have been the last. My other boy: he a great athelete and has much potential. But he also makes mistakes and tears up when he misses the ball. It breaks my heart to see him strike out because I know he’s harder on himself than his Father or the Coach or the other parents in the crowd. I was a ball player and it was very hard to walk up to that plate with all eyes on me and hit the ball. I try to explain this to my husband who is all about the win and how well he plays, that he needs to step back. I too: have caught myself yelling at him from the stands because I know he can play better than he does at times. And I step back! I walk as far away as I can without missing the game so he won’t hear me sigh. It is a basic human reaction. But my son won’t hear me, because I walk away. Why can’t we all walk away when we feel ourself about to sigh or yell at our child for missing a ball??? Or for that matter when they are yelling at MY son. He’s going into high school next year and …..,

    I pray they don’t kill his spirit before he learns that it means nothing more than an afternoon at the ball park and should be all about fun, not winning, not scholarships, not being better than everyone else……but being the best THEY can be and to have fun doing it…. I could go on and on but I’ll stop

    • says

      Thank you for sharing your side. As a mom with two young children, it makes me scared as they get older. I just want them to know it’s all about having fun and not how good you are. Unfortunately, OTHER parents can ruin this. I think the message in this sign should be one that all sporting organization pass on.

  9. says

    I saw this too and as a coach for girls field hockey and lacrosse…it couldn’t have been said better. Our organization is actually going through positive coaching training right now and it will be extended to the parents after we have all completed it.

    Honor the Game. Respect the Players!

    P.S. I’m going to the GLO party in Philly before Bloggy Bootcamp kicks off. Hope I get to meet you in person!
    Kristen´s last blog post ..To Live My Life As It’s Meant To Be…

  10. Laura Domeb says

    I want to look into purchasing at least one sign; does anyone know how or what website to prchase these through?

  11. Trina says

    This sign, from my unerstanding, (I have not actually seen it at the fields, but haven’t looked either) is actually up at the fields where my son plays tball. He just started this year. I noticed the ‘Cana Tigers’ at the bottom. It’s a team out of Corsicana, TX.

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