Need advise...is this the end?

Discussion in 'SoCalScene' started by pitch_perf, Apr 10, 2019.

  1. pitch_perf

    pitch_perf Bronze

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    2 weeks ago, DD dropped the bombshell that she is miserable, no longer loves soccer, and wants to quit. I'm seeking advise from the 'been there done that' folks on this board.

    A few contributing factors...
    She is a GK. She plays highest level soccer. She is 16. She has nagging injuries common to keepers, the current issue is 'playable' but can't recover or repair without rest. She has anxiety about games, which is a direct result of recent HS season and a team/coach that destroyed her confidence (team was much lower caliber and coach expected unrealistic things of her due to her high level of play/experience). Anxiety has caused physical and mental decline, which now is the filter through which she sees soccer. She is seeing a counselor (CBT therapy) and all her doctors (physical and mental) tell her she must take 2+ months off to get her body and mind in a better place before she make a permanent and life changing decision. She feels torn by her previous love and dedication to her sport, her team, her family, and the countless $ that have been invested in her, but is overwhelmed with her own feelings/fears/hurts/etc. Oh, and she has a verbal commitment with full ride scholarship to a D1 program in 2 years. She says her body won't last for 6 more years of soccer (2 club then college). There is truth in that - her current, injured, exhausted body can't. 5+ years of year round soccer with no break (1-2 weeks in summer maybe) have taken a toll. But 2 years can change a lot, right?

    Any advise or experience in this type of situation? Is it possible, with therapy, rest, physical and mental recovery, time, and tremendous support, for her to get through this and get back in the net? I know the response is 'it depends on your kid'. Her happiness is our goal and if this ends up a permanent decision, we fully support it. But it is so hard stepping back while season continues and life changing course changes loom.

    BTW, whatever happens, her college selection won't change. It is the perfect school for her - soccer or not.

    Thanks for comments. I know sometimes posters on this forum are not always kind, so I respectfully ask for helpful responses :)
     
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  2. OrangeCountyDad

    OrangeCountyDad Bronze

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    well it certainly seems she needs a break, especially if that's what the docs are saying. I know too many people my own age who didn't rest when they needed it and now as grownups their bodies are falling apart. What's 2 years now compared to the rest of her life? I know that's hard to accept as a 16 year old.

    What about coaching youngers to stay connected to soccer, continuing with physical therapy/etc, and pick up a new less strenuous sport/activity to keep the mind engaged?
     
  3. Messi>CR7

    Messi>CR7 Silver

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    I don't want to give you some mumble-jumble unhelpful advice since I don't have any experience dealing with a teen daughter. However, can she get into this dream college of hers without being an athlete? If so, I would just let her enjoy her HS and college and forget soccer if it's no longer fun (if it were my DD). She can always walk on again if she gets her passion back.

    If she needs soccer to get into her dream school, in actuality you're looking at 3 more years of soccer, not 6 years. She can quit the team after freshman year.
     
  4. ForumParent

    ForumParent Bronze

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    Full disclaimer, we haven’t been there done that yet due to age, but boy it sounds like she needs a break (and agree, break first then decide).
     
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  5. Grace T.

    Grace T. Silver

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    I can only offer sympathy. Being a GK is tough and sometimes the expectations placed on you are unrealistic and impossible. He's much younger than yours, but my son has quit twice now only (without pressure from us) get back in there. The big thing about a goalkeeper is keeping that confidence. Just look at the story of Joe Hart...if she comes back in before that confidence is back in place the danger is the same thing happens to her.
     
  6. Soccerfan2

    Soccerfan2 Bronze

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    Been there both as an athlete myself and as a parent. Follow doctor’s orders and then finish the season to which she is currently committed if there is any left (with whatever level of involvement doctor recommends) because your commitment is to your team.
    Then let her pick her path, for better or worse. Let her own her choices and mistakes and just listen and support them. You can help her understand the difference between quitting because she feels inadequate (temporary and controllable) and quitting because she wants to protect her physical health and/or spend her time doing other things instead. It is absolutely possible that under duress she feels emotions that will subside or change once she’s had a rest. Best of luck to her on all fronts!
     
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  7. toucan

    toucan Bronze

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    I speak from experience. This is her likely soccer future. Your struggle to keep her involved in soccer will become ever-increasing, and she will resent you if you push too hard. Even is she is still playing, she will mentally check-out, her attitude will become cancerous, and she will make it impossible for you to keep her in. She will wear you out and there is nothing you can do about it.

    After a break, she will lose the grounding that comes with being on the soccer team. If she is like other high-performing players, soccer has been the anchor of her social life for the last 5 or 6 years. She will lose contact with her soccer friends, and they will move on without her. She will begin to miss it. Next year she will want to play again. It may be at a lower level, and she might have lost some of her skills. This might be a short-term rebound, but she will make her High School team again and they will be glad to have her. Or, she might get all of her mojo back. Cross your fingers.

    Whether she reclaims all of her competitive fire and college-playing aspirations is more likely a "no" than a "yes." But she might if you let her find her own path.

    If you press too hard, though, she is going to quit anyway, and she will probably never return.
     
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  8. 46n2

    46n2 Bronze

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    let her decide, but time off works wonders.....no soccer or mention of it for weeks, then bring it up after 4 weeks, she's not going to go backwards, its our crazy way of thinking that makes us think that......
     
  9. electrichead72

    electrichead72 Bronze

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    Speaking from my experience, I went through the same thing with my daughter.

    She came off a bad HS and club season and along with some non-related medical issues, she was just over it all. She wanted to take a break, and after frequent discussions, we decided it was for the good. She was 15 at the time.

    She took 4 months off, rested and got herself in a better place and wanted to go back. She was able to get back into the club team with her friends and had to fight for a spot again, but her head was better and she put in the work.

    Sometimes they just need a break from the pressure of always being busy.
     
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  10. mirage

    mirage Silver

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    Your kid sounds just like my next door's daughter some years back.

    She gave up soccer (was aspiring to play in college and spent 90% of her free time on the field) at 16, just like your DD. She was a midfielder and simply got tired of feeling physical pain all the time. I know because her best friend at the time was my daughter who didn't play sports. My kid would tell me all the stress and trauma she was going through, in passing, at the time. You know, kind of stuff kids talk to each other but not to parents or other adults....

    Fast-forward to today, she graduated from SD State and just finished law school at UC Hestings. Just about to or did take the bar exam. She's getting married and my daughter is her maid of honor.

    At the end of the day, life brings many forks on the road and I believe its her dedication to sports that got her though to where she is. My daughter who didn't play sports is finally in the core of nursing program at U of Idaho, after several false starts. We are convinced that our son, who is 8 years younger and now playing soccer in college, will finish his undergrad before my daughter will.

    So the moral of the story is if she is ready to quit, probably best to listen to her. She's most likely have learned all the life lessons the game can teach her and have formed solid foundation. Let her go find a new passion to channel her energy and plow new field...just my thoughts.
     
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  11. timbuck

    timbuck

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    Dont' walk away - Run away. If she is feeling this extreme pressure anxiety to the point where she needs CBT therapy- Walk away. If she is spending more time in the doctors office or physical therapists office than she is at the beach or the mall with friends - walk away.

    Is it possible that something else besides soccer is causing her some mental health issues?
     
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  12. Surf Zombie

    Surf Zombie Bronze

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    “Is it possible, with therapy, rest, physical and mental recovery, time, and tremendous support, for her to get through this and get back in the net?”

    I had to read that a couple of times. If it has gotten to this point I’d be doing a forced shut down of my child. I’m not saying end her soccer career, but I would insist, as the parent, that she take months off. When her mind and body are right, then and only then would I get her going again, if she still wanted it. And most importantly, if she does restart her playing days, fresh start in a healthy environment. Can’t put her back in the same spot with the same coach. Just mho.
     
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  13. full90

    full90 Silver

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    Absolutely take a break. Call the college coach and explain where she’s at (she should either make the call or at least be on the call). If the coach is worth his/her salt they will be super supportive. If you’re worried about how they will react PM me and I’ll tell you. (I have a relative in the business).

    Yes a break is fine and yes she could come back from it. Walking away for now doesn’t mean forever. And even if it is a happy kid is worth it. She either takes the break now or quits a few months in at college and that stinks for everyone.

    A wise older person advised us to give our kid a summer break even when the club kept playing. We scheduled 2 vacations in the midst of a month off while the team kept playing. Everyone thought we were crazy. After a month one summer our kid came back actually better than before. 5 weeks the next summer and our kid was even better than everyone else. Not that that’s the goal but there is magic in rest and downtime. Esp with the crush of anxiety these days. Mentally healthy is worth way more than anything else. Best wishes.
     
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  14. El Clasico

    El Clasico Silver

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    Do you mean like parents pressuring a kid to do something that they hate doing but are afraid to tell their parents? Have seen plenty of that over the years where parents are absolutely clueless about their kids wants and needs and are more focused on using the kid for their own desires.

    IMO, the fact that a parent would come on the board asking for advice on how to get a kid in this situation back into the sport tells me a lot. Otherwise, why would therapy be needed? If a child is done, the child is done. Allow them to go on and use the lessons learned over the years to be competitive in other aspects of life and thrive. At this point, they are young adults, it has to be what they want or you will mess them up in the head.
     
  15. timbuck

    timbuck

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    “She feels torn by her previous love anddedication to her sport, her team, herfamily, and the countless $ that have been invested in her, but is overwhelmed with her own feelings/fears/hurts/etc. Oh, and she has a verbal commitment with full ridescholarship to a D1 program in 2 years. She says her body won't last for 6 more years of soccer (2 club then college). There is truth in that - her current, injured, exhausted body can't. 5+ years of year round soccer with no break”


    This is the portion of the post that got me.
    Of course the kid feels pressure.
    “The money invested in her”- Stop right there. Has there be a conversation where you had said “Do you realize how much money we have spent on you?” That’s gotta make a kid feel a ton of pressure.

    “Verbal commitment for a full ride in 2 years”- why did she commit so early? A verbal commitment isn’t worth the paper it’s printed on. Are you sure it’s her dream school regardless of soccer? If she goes there but decides not to play, will she be bummed out when she sees the team practice/play/hang out? Maybe consider other schools as options - with our without soccer.

    “She says her body won’t last 6 years”- What kind of injuries has she has? Bumps or bruises? Surgeries? Casts? Stitches?
    Sure there’s some honor in playing with a little injury. But you don’t want her to be hobbling around at 35 years old just to win a plastic trophy at 17.
     
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  16. jpeter

    jpeter Silver

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    I would say the end my friend, a 16yr old should be making their own decisions...

     
  17. Paul Spacey

    Paul Spacey Silver

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    It's a tough situation and of course ultimately your daughter has to be the one to decide.

    Forgive my lack of compassion but is the counseling necessary? If someone loves doing something (I mean truly loves it and doesn't just say the word occasionally to keep people happy), they will invariably stick with it through the good times and bad and through injuries in particular.

    Once kids reach roughly 14/15 years of age, IMO there are two huge factors that result in them quitting. Firstly, they never truly loved it anyway and played for enjoyment, social reasons etc (no problem with that but having a 'loose' connection with the game means it likely won't last). Second, they haven't improved enough to keep up with the level they are playing at and so the enjoyment of playing naturally dissipates. I see both of these examples often.

    This situation and scenario sounds like your daughter is done, at least for now. If she rekindles a desire to play further down the line, she can. For now though, let her rest and enjoy her life without soccer.
     
  18. jayjay

    jayjay Bronze

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    Anxiety is a huge issue for many kids these days. I would not down play that at all.

    At this age, you just need to follow her lead.
     
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  19. beachbum

    beachbum Bronze

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    My daughter is a keeper and went through the same thing, at about the same age. She had a horrible club coach that all he did was demean the girls on the team and after two years of that Jacka#$ and year around soccer she was ready to hang it up. The only thing that kept her going that year was high school because it was about a 10-12 week break from her club coach and it was fun. Thankfully the DA let the girls play high school the first year. That break got her through the rest of the season. Once the season ended she only had about a two week break and we told her to shut down completely which she did but after the two weeks she was still in dread mode. We told her to talk to her new coach who is the director and tell him what's going on. She did and that conversation with him was fantastic. He told her take some more time off but to let him know in a few weeks if you will be ready for the first game in just over a month, as you are the only goalie i'm keeping on the team. He had told her that he went through the same thing and he had taken a few months off and it re-energized him. His talk with her could not have gone better, it boosted her morale instantly and she felt that he was in her corner and really empathized with her situation. A week before the first game she went back and haven't heard any quit talk since then. She is ready to be done with club but she realizes its the path that she has to take to get to where she wants to be, which is to play soccer in college.

    Just a couple of quick asides about this, 1. We also had hard a fast rules about quitting mid season, we never let our kids quit anything in the middle of whatever it was they were doing, we always made them finish what they started. So even though she had these feelings during the season we never gave her the quit option until after the season. 2. she is also a D1 commit and was committed her freshman year. 3. our daughter never seems to get anxious or feels pressure she seems to get more focused the harder the game.

    Obviously handle it how you want but IMO she needs some significant time off to recharge.
     
  20. RedCard

    RedCard Silver

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    I have 14 year old twin keepers ( boy & girl ) so I feel for you. I one thing that you mentioned that I didn’t like was that the HS coach was expecting too much from your daughter since she played on a high level club team, and that’s just not right. My daughter’s club team is one of the top teams for 05 and she also played for her middle school team l. Her club coach really didn’t recommend her to play middle school soccer but wouldn’t mine if she allows stay on her feet, no diving, and stayed in the box ( not challenging anyone 1v1) which she did, and it was painful to watch. It wasn’t fair to her school team that she couldn’t give 100% but she did it. Some of the parents were upset since they knew her and her team and I had to remain them of her “rules” and that I could pull her if they didn’t like that and they panic more cause there was no 2nd keeper. High school is different of course we’re she can give 100% but that team isn’t very good so it should be interesting next year since that team has 11 seniors including the keeper. But why I’m trying to say is that the high school coach shouldn’t add more pressure cause she the difference in teams seems like night and day. Not her fault that the high school team wasn’t that good. I hope for the best and hope she makes a healthy and full recovery both physical and mental. ⚽️⚽️⚽️
     

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