My Autistic son quit football

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-19-2007
My Autistic son quit football
7
Fri, 09-17-2010 - 12:40pm
My 17 year old Autistic quit football. I am in shock!!!I thought he lived for football.He has no friends.This was the only social connection he had.He told me he quit because the coach was so mean,and would not give him much play time.Now he is obsessed with his weight,and wondering if he did the right thing.When he told the principal and the coach that he wanted to quit they were very hateful.All they said was that he could not play next year,and hand in your pads.Am I wrong to think that they could of showed some little compassion?It is almost like they wanted him to quit
iVillage Member
Registered: 10-20-2009
Fri, 09-17-2010 - 12:52pm

Does he have an IEP?

Susan L.



Robert Edward Xavier Lin - Born July 31, 2010 at 5:56AM, 6 pounds 4 ounces and 19 inches long. He spent 2 weeks in the NICU but he's doing great now!
iVillage Member
Registered: 09-19-2007
Fri, 09-17-2010 - 1:03pm
Yes my son has a IEP,and they do help him in school.We have a new coach,He is hard to talk,and he acts like a big kid himself.The principal is about the same.I will not allow the principal in his IEP meetings anymore,because he does not feel that my son should receive special help.I have written to the superintendent,I hope she can through to them.
iVillage Member
Registered: 10-20-2009
Fri, 09-17-2010 - 1:26pm

Sorry about the coach and principal not being helpful or good to talk to.

Susan L.



Robert Edward Xavier Lin - Born July 31, 2010 at 5:56AM, 6 pounds 4 ounces and 19 inches long. He spent 2 weeks in the NICU but he's doing great now!
Avatar for ribrit
iVillage Member
Registered: 02-24-2001
Fri, 09-17-2010 - 2:25pm

I am so sorry.

He has legal rights. I think they are mistreating him and pushed him in to leaving because they did not want someone like your son there. I am sick of narrow minded bullies who end up as school staff.

Good luck with this.

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Fri, 09-17-2010 - 6:47pm

Those who coach sports are not fond of the concept of quitting. I suspect ANY 17 year old who made the decision would be treated in the same manner. High school sports do not guarantee play time. Wayyy too competitive by that point.

If he has been playing football and still doesn't have friends, I would suggest looking to another venue for friends.

My 18 year old flirts with the spectrum. He had good friends in junior high and, because of our crazy school system, ended up in a different high school than those friends. He never made new friends and rarely socialized with the old ones but found a great group at his job at the grocery store. They get together 2-3 times a week to play video games and the interaction is wonderful. That is really what friendship is about-interaction and shared interests. It honestly doesn't sound like your son was getting that anyway, KWIM?

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-06-2000
Fri, 09-17-2010 - 7:28pm

I really don't see how the school is to blame here.

Football is not a required class.

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-16-1999
Fri, 09-17-2010 - 9:53pm

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I totally agree with this. AND high school coaches don't like anyone who bucks the system either.

My DS played Varsity football beginning his sophomore year. Then he enlisted in the army his junior year and went to basic training the summer between junior and senior year. Football practice started 10 days before he got home from basic training. Had a new head coach that year, but all of the assistants were the same. Head coach decides that DS has to do the two weeks of conditioning practice that he missed before he'd be allowed to practice with the team - the way it ended up working out, he'd have had to miss the first two games. Now there was no WIAA or school rule that said he had to miss... just the coaches opinion. DS went to talk to the Defensive Coordinator and the Defensive line coach who he'd worked with Sophomore and Junior year, they went to bat for DS, said he should be allowed to practice with the rest of the team so he wouldn't miss any games - the ONLY reason the coach gave for not allowing DS to do pad-practice was "he's out of condition and he could get hurt." Not sure how they came to the compromise but if DS could keep up with the rest of the team on the last day of conditioning practice (after the rest of the team had been doing two a day's for two weeks), he'd be allowed to suit up for practice so he'd be able to play the first two games. As I heard it from the defensive coordinator, the head coach was bound and determined to prove Z couldn't keep up with the rest of the team coz he was out of shape. Now, remember, DS had just come back from BASIC TRAINING - which is essentially ALL DAY work outs, courtesy of the US Army. As it ended up working out - the rest of the team was dropping out of the conditioning drills like crazy, while DS kept going and going. Finally the coach gave up, told the guys to hit the showers, and DS says to him "we're done already coach? Do you mind if I run a little before going in?" DS ended up running 2 miles on the track before leaving practice that night - while the other guys were dieing! He did suit up for pad-practice the next day, and never missed a game his senior year. However, he was given grief from the head coach all season, in spite of garnering some school records at Defensive End that year... I'm sure all because DS chose to buck the system.

Coaches don't like quitters, and they don't like people who don't fit neatly into their mold. And they don't make many (if any) accommodations at the varsity level. At that level, it's about winning, not about "everybody plays." Might not seem fair, but that's the way it's been forever and a day.