My kids interests are mainly in Swimming, Art and Musical Theatre. Now, you would think that the most Pushy Parents would be the well-known stage mothers....Judy Garland having had one of the most pushiest mother's ever and in more recent times Lindsey Lohan and Britney Spears' Mothers. But I'm not so sure now....and what if a Pushy Parent had a combination of interest's for their child? What would that be like?
Olly and Amber have attended Theatrical Schools, since they were 4 and three, part-time. Amber mainly because she loved the clothes the ballerina's wore (!) and Olly, to help with his speech/diction - which it did, and also Drama to get him to empathise with others - which it didn't!
The mothers who attended on Saturday's didn't seem like pushy mums, they were a bit strange now and again - you know, talk to you one week, ignore you the next, but on the whole it was fine.
Amber was eventually offered a full-time scholarship and that's where I met some more of the 'full-time' parents, one of them being my friend Bea. Although concerned for their child's education, none seemed to be the pushy type.
To cut a very long and nasty story short, the school went bankrupt, (probably giving away too many scholarships), so we all scattered to the winds and the kids attended another Theatrical School, which my friend Bea recommended and they really enjoy it. A Pushy Parent had not yet reared it's ugly head, (but a few arsehole Dad's have, they seem to get a great kick out of blocking your car in and when asked to move they reply smugly 'I'm just waiting for my daughter, she'll be out in a minute, then I'll move it'! Tossers.
When Amber and I attended the Art Competition, I got yapping to another mother there and I commented on the winner and how I could see why she won. This woman snapped back that she could not see how she could have won as she thought her daughter's picture was much better. Okaaay! (I hadn't met parents from the Art world before, so this was new!).
Swimming is probably the worst I have come across. The kids recently entered into what was supposed to be, a friendly competition between local counties. It was specifically for kids who do not swim competitively and it is really for them to gain experience,
However, helping at poolside, I was shocked by the parents (mainly the Dads I might add). One in particular became so engrossed at encouraging his man-size child, that he was down at the poolside yelling his head off. He had to be sent back to the seats but he was not shame-faced at all. Needless to say his kid won, probably because his kid was the size of my husband. But this world is cut-throat.
Now, Bea had recently contacted me because her daughter loves to swim, so I told her to bring her down to our club so she can get some practise in and improve her skills.
I help at poolside only when my kids swim, so I can keep an eye on Olly, because if the lanes get too crowded, he freaks out and he always has to be in the front, so this way I can advise the coaches and avoid any potentially nasty situations occurring.
Unfortunately, on this particular day, there were a shortage of coaches, so I had to take two lanes with about 14 kids. You need to be organised otherwise the teenage girls start gossiping and they never do anything. So I had two lanes, 14 kids of mixed ages, but roughly the same ability.
About 20 Min's into the session, I heard this yelling from the seats. I look up and it's Bea. She is screaming down from the auditorium telling me to coach her child individually because her strokes were so poor!
I couldn't believe it! Bloody cheek!
So this was the Pushy Parent in the form of my supposed friend Bea!
A stage-mother and swimming mother combined - not a pretty sight and not for the weak-kneed! Ethel Milne (Judy Garland's mother) has a rival.
I gave her the thumbs up, instead of giving her the finger (which I really felt like doing, because she, above all, knows my situation with the swimming and Olly). I helped her daughter as much as I could, but with 14 kids and trying to keep track of them all was a tall order.
Anyway, I saw Bea again this evening as we were dropping our kids off at the Theatrical School and I called her over. (It had been bugging me and I had to sort it out).
I reiterated to her that I am not a trained coach and that my sole purpose for being at the poolside is to help with Olly. I am not trained to coach swimming and the only experience I have is personally and not professionally. If she was not happy that I was helping at this particular session then perhaps she should find another session to attend.
She denied the whole thing and said she just wanted her daughter to kick her legs more! Yeah, and I've just seen a pig fly!
Pushy Parents take all forms, they may be lurking in your friends......to be warned is to be fore-armed....as they say.