Monday, October 25, 2010

Participation Trophies

The worst part of the soccer season is here.  Trophies!  Obviously I'm not a fan.  Unless my kids are part of a winning team, I don't see the point.  There was a choice on Rio's team...t-shirts or trophies.  Our choice lost, by a lot.  I don't know why it surprises me, I predicted this from the day we signed up for soccer.  The story is pretty much the same but in different variation. 

"My son is expecting one."
"My son doesn't have a trophy yet and he wants one."
"It just makes me feel good when I see him get a trophy."
"They're young, what does it really matter?"
"It makes the kids happy."
"The boys worked so hard, they deserve them."

Traditionally trophies are a symbol of winning.  So this is what I'm hearing; expecting, wanting, deserving and having are winning attitudes.  What are we rewarding?  I don't think parents are doing their children any favors.

Rio's coach called to ask if they should order Rio a trophy.  Now I'm in a terrible position.  I would love to tell him NO.  Rio doesn't even want one, he wants a t-shirt.  However if I did that, then it's separating Rio from the team, and after all isn't that the point of team sports?  To be a team, not an individual. 

If I say, "Ya, go ahead he can have a trophy." 

Does that make me a hypocrite?  I should practice what I preach.  

Rio says, "I'm just gonna throw it away." 

What a waste of money.  And worst of all, I feel like it's taking away from him winning his first trophy.  If he's handed trophies year after year for participation it will be no big deal.  How sad.

On a lighter note;  Amaya is on a winning team and we're doing medals.  Rio is excited for his sister.

1 comment:

  1. I'm having the same issue with my sons team. It's sad how we live in such a materialistic society that the only way people feel good is if they get something.