How to React?
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|Sun, 03-09-2008 - 3:54pm|
Jordyn had a competition yesterday. Just to give a short background, she has had a rough season, missed a few competitions, missed a decent amount of practice from us being gone over christmas and her allergies, strep, etc. She is the only optional gymnast is her 4:15 group because she doesn't get out of school until 4:00 and the 2 other girls that were in her group have been injured and aren't practicing any longer. So she mostly practices with the newer level 6 girls while she is a level 8. All the other optional girls on her team start practice at 3:30 and they do do stuff together, they do it in different groups more often. She's finally coming on strong and had a wonderful meet yesterday. Her one teammate who is repeating level 8, according to her mom she was supposed to be a level 9 this year, but they felt she was too young to handle it, she just turned 11, however, did not have a good meet at all. When I got up and checked my email this morning this is the email I received from this girl's mother.
"I wanted to let you know that I'm very upset with Jordyn's attitude when it comes
to her teammates. She is very disrespectful when they mess up and she scores
higher than them on an event. She is happy about their mistakes and let's
them know it. Then have the nerve to brag about her scores. Well today she
made Kierstyn cry with her funky attitude and I'm mad. To have her OWN
teammate make fun of her when she fell on bars is not acceptable to me.
This has been going on the whole season with her teammates. I am sure you
have noticed a separation with Jordyn and the rest of the girls and now you know
why. It's sad to know that the girls will not miss her when she leaves because
of the way she has treated them all season. I'm letting you know all this because
today if affected my child."
Now I am not at all naive enough to think that Jordyn is a complete angel. But I did talk to her this morning and asked her about yesterday and showed her the email. She looked stunned, said she didn't even talk to this other girl after bars because she was very upset about her performance, and then Jordyn went to her room in tears and didn't even want to talk to me. I asked her about things this season, if she has been separated, if she feels like the other girls are treating her differently, etc. and she said no. When Jordyn and I talk after practices at night or after meets she never has anything bad to say about her teammates. Honestly, I am not sure exactly how to respond to this email. Just as another note, this girl did not fall on bars, she had a rough bar set and did hit her feet on the ground, and the coaches did inquiries on 2 of her events because they felt the judges scored her too low, but both inquiries were left as originally scored. The only thing Jordyn said after yesterday competition was she felt a lot of pressure because they were tied after the 3rd rotation to win first place team competition and her coach told her that she had to score big because Kierstyn's poor score, they needed Jordyn's score to be good. And bars has notoriously been Jordyn's worst event.
I did forward the email to the coach and asked for his input. I indicated that I would like his thoughts, and if in fact he has seen Jordyn be mean or insulting at all to her teammates in practice or at meets I would like to know, its my responsibility as a parent to teach her sportsmanship, but if I don't see or know about a problem then I cannot properly address it. But also, if it is in fact a misunderstanding, we have 6 weeks left to go in this season, she is with these girls 20-30 hours a week, and it is definately going to affect her and her performance if she thinks that all if her teammates hate her. My other fear also is, this mother is the head of most of the stuff done at the gym, and she is in constant contact with a lot of the other parents and I have seen first hand her bad mouth other gymnasts and their parents even if its a misunderstanding. Right now I am just waiting for a response from her coach before I email this parent back, but honestly, I don't know at all how to respond without sounding like I am making excuses (why she is "separate" from the rest of the team most of the time), or accusatory (that Jordyn indicated that she did not say anything at all her her daughter) and to be honest, I don't feel like Jordyn should have to apologize for being happy with a good meet performance, she has worked very hard and earned it. But I have never heard or seen her be outwardly "braggy" about it. Thoughts and suggestions are welcome.