Parents, especially hockey parents, tend to see their children as perfect, or at least close to it. It’s often hard for parents to look at their children objectively, as athletes, in that special way that coaches do.
So, before you get mad and demand that your child be given more ice time or a “better” position, stop for a minute and consider whether or not you’re truly being objective.
Talk to the Coach
If you think your child may be being treated unfairly, take a minute to talk to the coach. Don’t approach the coach in an angry or confrontational way. Instead, say that you just want to understand why the coach is making the choices he is with your child.
If there’s a valid reason for the things you don’t like- like your child is still working on certain skills or the coach is priming your child for a different position than he’s previously paid- trust the coach and his choices. The only time you should speak up is if you really think there is some kind of favoritism or unfair treatment going on. If you and others can see that, and you’re truly not just being “partial” to your child, then it may be time to take real action.
Talk to Your Child
In addition to having a talk with the coach, talk with your child.
In a way that isn’t pressuring but is just friendly and conversational, find out if your child is doing everything he can to be a good player. Is he attending all practices, giving each practice and game his all, and treating his teammates, coach, and officials with respect?
If your child is honestly doing his best and the coach is fair, then just trust that your coach is using your child in the best ways possible based on his current ability level. If your child isn’t doing his best, then work with your child to improve, If that’s what your child- not you- truly wants.