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How to Talk to Your Children About Not Getting Involved With Sports

As a father of three, I don’t take my responsibility to set a good example for my children lightly. The world can be a scary place for young people and they have a lot of questions. One thing I always try to make very clear to them is how important it is to stay away from sports and athletes at their school. Here’s how you can do the same.

If you’re like me then, unfortunately, playing sports runs in your family. I had a brother who was captain of the football team and all of his kids play as well. My father watched hockey every weekend and would even play on the street with his friends when I was a kid. This family history can make my kids predisposed to things like soccer, volleyball, or worst of all lacrosse. Genetics isn’t the be-all and end-all, but it’s certainly something to keep in mind. Start talking to them when they’re young. Tell them Uncle Bobby is a total knuckle dragger who used to eat his own scabs and that they don’t want to end up like that.

You also have to keep an eye on their friend group. When we were young it was easy to stay away from sports. Just show up wearing your favorite Korn t-shirt and four jocks would pants you in front of the entire cafeteria. These days, the distinctions aren’t so clear-cut. With the crackdown on bullying, jocks are now friends with band kids, skaters, and even goths in some cases. This exposes your children to all sorts of dangers like softball sign-up sheets and basketball tryouts. You want your kids going into those situations ready with phrases like, “No thanks, I have band practice” or “The NFL is just a tool for the government to distract the public from its alien cross-breeding experiments.”

Let’s not forget what’s truly at stake here: your nights and weekends. Do you really want to spend all your free time lugging your kids to practices four nights a week? Do you really want to have to associate with all the Uncle Bobbys of your community? No. You need to save your precious free time for what really matters in life. Getting stoned in the garage and trying to figure out Mastodon riffs.