Parents want the most for their kids.
I mean, that’s not rocket science. That’s just parental love.
And for the college recruiting process, which has so many long-term impacts on a student-athlete and their families’ lives, it totally makes sense that parents or guardians are involved in the process. We’ve written before about lessons parents learned from the college recruiting journey and questions parents can ask without feeling overbearing.
Which is why we thought it was interesting when Keith Van Horn, former University of Utah All-American and NBA basketball player, wrote a compelling and thoughtful piece about the harm that parents with exaggerated expectations for their children can cause.
Exaggerated expectations. One of the interesting studies Van Horn talks about — we’ll let you read about the rest — found that 50 percent of parents with overweight children were in denial about the child’s weight.
They may not really be in denial. Could it be that we are genetically programmed to believe our children are just better than they are?
Let’s be honest. That makes a lot of sense, too.
And as empowering as an encouraging parent may be, playing a sport under the eye of a parent with “delusional parent disorder” is like getting heckled at the free throw line.
These situations negatively impact the player-teammate, player-coach and most importantly the child-parent relationship. It instills a belief within our child that they are not living up to our expectations and instead of learning to take personal responsibility for their own enjoyment and improvement in their sport, they learn to blame coaches, teammates and end up looking for someone else to help them get to the ‘next level’ rather than finding the passion and desire within themselves to improve and reach their goals.
Have you encountered a parent with Delusional Parent Disorder? How do you get past the expectations and keep your head in the game?