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Old 09-28-2020, 07:02 PM   #51
Flasch186
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Originally Posted by kiwiLB57 View Post
This thread is amazing.

You think this is good, check out this doozy:

Awkward - Front Office Football Central
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Old 09-30-2020, 09:10 AM   #52
Flasch186
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A 10/11yo meltdown last night during BP. "I'm terrible" and other negative things about himself. Luckily perhaps that we were the last ones there cleaning up and the coach took an opportunity to talk to Aiden for about :40 minutes and it lifted his spirits but he;s really gotta give himself some breathing room in regards to failing. Side note which applies: Aiden's been diagnosed gifted which means a lot of things to a lot of different people but for him it manifests in perfectionism, a need to learn the intricacies of a process, a desire to meet expectations AND wild mood swings about himself. The only thing I really struggle to manage (and there's a lot so this sentence doesn't make a ton of sense) is the negative words about himself. I struggle to know what to do when that's happening other then to try to counter them with positive words but it doesn't seem to equal things out.
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Old 09-30-2020, 10:41 AM   #53
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To me, that is a sign of a kid that cares. My daughter is 17 and we still have these moments from a kid who has hit walk off HRs to win state playoff games and struck out 13 against a lineup of all D1 committed kids.

I can't explain it other than it is just pent up frustration. I think a lot of players go through situations like this.
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Old 09-30-2020, 11:27 AM   #54
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I actually know how you feel. I grew up that way, and my middle son is the same way. The worst is when he prepares really hard, and fails. It's a completely crushing moment as dad, and knowing that I tend to respond the same way doesn't help.

Check out this book


What to Do When Good Enough Isn't Good Enough: The Real Deal on Perfectionism: A Guide for Kids - Kindle edition by Greenspon Ph.D., Thomas S.. Health, Fitness & Dieting Kindle eBooks @ Amazon.com.
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Old 09-30-2020, 01:10 PM   #55
JonInMiddleGA
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The only thing I really struggle to manage (and there's a lot so this sentence doesn't make a ton of sense) is the negative words about himself.

I've been around young athletes in various guises for about 40 years and the single most disturbing/distressful/unnerving experience I've had was standing just near enough to hear the running monologue that a young (HS) female tennis teammate of harangued herself with through every match. I don't think I've ever been more concerned about the ... emotional well-being(?) of a kid that was not my own. No major off-court issues afaik, but it genuinely frightened me.

I say that simply to TRY to say this: it IS a hard thing to hear, exponentially worse I'm sure if it's your own child. So struggling with it as a parent is certainly reasonable afaic. Don't let not knowing the perfect one-button solution get you down, there's great value in simply making the effort. Like most all things parenting, there's on the job training involved.
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Old 09-30-2020, 01:34 PM   #56
Atocep
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A 10/11yo meltdown last night during BP. "I'm terrible" and other negative things about himself. Luckily perhaps that we were the last ones there cleaning up and the coach took an opportunity to talk to Aiden for about :40 minutes and it lifted his spirits but he;s really gotta give himself some breathing room in regards to failing. Side note which applies: Aiden's been diagnosed gifted which means a lot of things to a lot of different people but for him it manifests in perfectionism, a need to learn the intricacies of a process, a desire to meet expectations AND wild mood swings about himself. The only thing I really struggle to manage (and there's a lot so this sentence doesn't make a ton of sense) is the negative words about himself. I struggle to know what to do when that's happening other then to try to counter them with positive words but it doesn't seem to equal things out.


As I mentioned in an earlier post, development isn't a linear path upward. Perspective of where you started is really important.

It's been 8 and a half years since I wrote my dynasty about coaching my son's 10u team and I went through a lot of thr things you've experienced. One of the final straws that convinced me to coach was when he played on a team at 9u that failed to win a single game he finished the year completely frustrated with himself and down on his own ability. It was tough to see.

My Experience Coaching a 9-10 Year Old Baseball Team in a Rigged League - Front Office Football Central

I learned quite a bit from that season and 2 years later I found myself coaching a travel team while learning from ex pros. My final year coaching was 13u, but I've seen my son go through ups and downs all along the way. From the winless 9u team, to winning the league at 11u, to getting cut from the 8th grade team, to hitting over 500 on the jv team a year later and getting a late season call up as a freshman, to being the favorite to be an the all conference catcher as a senior, to covid shutting things down, and then finally signing with a top JC in the area that expects him to start next season.
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Old 09-30-2020, 01:37 PM   #57
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So struggling with it as a parent is certainly reasonable afaic. Don't let not knowing the perfect one-button solution get you down, there's great value in simply making the effort. Like most all things parenting, there's on the job training involved.

I'll echo this. It's not easy at all and it's really difficult to watch your kid struggle. Especially when you don't have the answers right then and there.
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Old 10-05-2020, 07:32 AM   #58
Flasch186
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Aiden had a good weekend of baseball and played solidly. He got some hits and scored some runs and committed no errors. Only two real mistakes that come from just not having enough experience. While in left he backed up on a throw from home that got past the 3rd baseman but Aiden had come up too close to third instead of straight down the line and was too close to react and ave the bad throw. Then another time while on second with no one on first a grounder to the SS and Aiden left for 3rd. He just didn't know or react properly to think he didn't need to run. He should've tempted the throw or feigned the go but stayed. That will come with situational coaching that happened right after that. More importantly his confidence ticked up a bit and his stats as well. He has some serious coaching coming his way for the next month and a half with A team ball, middle school ball and private lessons. You might say, woah...that's a lot! For some silly reason at our school he gets no homework. ZERO. So its baseball or fortnight or reading which isn't going to happen in the hours necessary to fill the idle hands so baseball it is.
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Old 10-05-2020, 08:05 AM   #59
Flasch186
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Side note

I’m still the Rec commissioner and we had to shut a team down for two weeks due to a covid confirmation

Crazy times


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Old 10-21-2020, 11:27 AM   #60
Flasch186
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Aiden's a mess with his swing. He's got a hitting coach that doesn't mind a steeper attack angle which requires a bit of a tilt and shoulder drop while his AB coach wants a flatter swing, shorter turn, and almost know shoulder drop (Mike Trout drops, Josh Donaldson very little). Couple that with being on the new team and seeing faster pitches and he's kind of a wreck. He's fouling off a ton, striking out more than ever, and not barrelling the ball any more. I'm going into overdrive to get him back on plane. It really sucks watching him struggle to do what he does well.
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Old 10-21-2020, 11:57 AM   #61
spleen1015
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It takes a little while to get used to faster pitching. He'll be alright!
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Old 10-28-2020, 09:28 PM   #62
Flasch186
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Aiden started his A team experience with only getting 3 hits in 11 games & 6 strikeouts.

Now hes had 8 hits in his last 9 games still with 5 ks though.

His confidence is starting to come back and his last game he hit two to the fence. One was a loud single played right and one the cf made a delicious catch on.


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Old 12-01-2020, 12:07 PM   #63
Flasch186
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Really weird time in the league. MAny kids playing Flag football which has hamstrung the team. Aiden is showing up to all practices and we do have some games and tourneys coming up but it's kinda messy. All the BIG plans about team organized training programs etc through the fall for a lead up to big spring season seem to have been pie in the sky. Aiden and I will be doing some on our own like the Camwood 30 day program for hitting.

Speaking of hitting.

Aiden hit his second dinger out in BP on Sunday...



Additionally, he started therapy today for his anxiety and self-esteem issues which, for the sake of this thread, does affect him in baseball.
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Old 12-11-2020, 02:19 PM   #64
Flasch186
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Update, appropriate considering the other thread:

1st lets get Aiden out of the way... He's strugglin'. Stepping in the hole by about 6-8 inches on every swing, looking at too many strikes, filled with anxiety (that he won't make the team in the spring). Playing fine in the field and has been hit and miss pitching. His head is a mess (we're only 2 sessions into therapy but the kid is filled with self-doubt and no matter what I say to try to lift him up I'm just lying - the therapist gave us a sheet on self-esteem issues and this is one of them, the inability to think people complimenting are telling the truth). Most importantly he has given every reason this season especially in practices for the coach's not to trust him.
The coaches don't trust him so he's not getting reps at any positions outside of LF & RF usually and he's batting bottom of the lineup. The season ends this weekend so we're hoping for a miraculous connection in the games this weekend leaving him something to build upon.

Now to the league, holy shit.

So the head of the competitive division is a guy named CT. Our coach of 11uA is TJ. TJ has a 9yo son that would play on CT's team (the A team) except that TJ doesn't like the style of coaching of the head coach nor his assistant coaches so TJ has to take the kid to another league nearby so that another coach will coach him and TJ will help out, assist when called upon. Well CT ain't havin' it.

CT harbors a vendetta right away and insinuates that TJ shouldn't coach 11u here if his youngest is over on 9u somewhere else even with him assisting a different Head Coach. The board doesn't have an issue with it, just CT.

This past weekend CT's youngest is playing as a guest player on a team and is catching when CT and his team show up. They decide to sit behind the backstop and talk/razz/heckle TJ3 to the point where one of CT's Assistant Coaches tells the kids to stop to which CT says something to the effect of, "I'm done taking the high road and being good. Go ahead boys and do what you want." This doesn't sit well with a bunch of papers that know about the vendetta.

Now, let me describe TJ. HE's passionate, loves the kids, loves baseball and can be justicey. When an ump makes a bad call TJ can sometimes be animated. No cursing, just animated and sometimes can get under umpire's skin. The parents love him for the most part although dad's that want to coach can disagree with him at times. For example, a parent this fall was having his injured kid 'run poles' and TJ was upset because the kid was hurt. So we had all of the kids run with the injured kid. Apparently, texts were exchanged later wherein the parent expressed frustration that TJ intervened in his disciplining of his son.

Anyways, about a month ago TJ was ejected from a game and I defended his actions when the board asked me about it in that the umpire was really bad (it happens) BUT when TJ tried to avoid tension with the umpire the umpire would seek it out by walking to our dugout, one time into our dugout, always pressing TJ looking for more instead of walking away. Regardless it wasn't a good look but nonetheless not the end of the world.

Well, this past weekend TJ was ejected by the worst umpire, who is known as a bad umpire, for being a bad umpire. The umpire did the following:

After directing coaches to call for time wouldn't grant time
Wouldn't confer with the other umpire when ask to get help
Missed an obvious Balk that would've scored our runner from 3rd
Called a player out for stepping on home plate to bunt with a runner on 3rd suicide squeeze (it was close on the replay - too close to call IMO)(same runner)
Called a ball fair when it was foul clearly (allowed other team to score)(was overturned by other umpire)

all of which went against us. In the meantime during the suicide squeeze 'out' TJ was so upset he left the field to get the Tourney director who witnessed it all. On the way, the umpire explained to the inquiring Asst coach what the call was and TJ, approaching the tourney director called out "Show me the footprint!" since the plate was dirty. The umpire pointed at a footprint (our player had touched home when he came and scored before being returned to 3rd) and yelled, "You're out of here... don't even come back to this field!" The tourney director, adjacent to TJ, called the Head Umpire on the phone and received permission to reinstate TJ. Then after the game, we learned that that particular umpire was so bad they suspended him for a month.

So CT learns of this and texts me for my opinion which I give to him that night via text and his final insinuation is that TJ did something wrong "and needs to be held accountable." I texted him back that I disagreed with his arbitrary insinuation amid what I considered incredible evidence by the tourney dir. and head ump that TJ was justified somewhat, that TJ was solely to blame. Then I called him out on his vendetta. He lost it via text eventually telling me to mind my own business.

I took it to the President who apparently knows it all and sees through the cloud of crap. They know what he's doing.... but wait there's more.

He begins to collect info to try and lay the groundwork to get TJ fired. HE has his wife text a mom from the team that she knows from church to try to get dirt. Of course, they come to me and I tell them what is going on and instead they write an effusive missive supporting TJ. Then, because CT, said that the parents who left for another league (the pole runnin' dad and another kid who's step-dad is the actual coach of the team at the other league) spoke to him about bad things with TJ, I got the mom who's husband is the coach at the other league to write a great missive about TJ supporting him wholely and explaining that they left so that the family could be together more and that's all.

Then I got copies of behind the scenes text messages CT has written about kids (8 & 9yo) stating things like, "Well kiddo is going to play for me or not at all," type stuff. The guy is bad bad bad and he's a board member and person in a position of authority.

HE came to the board meeting Tuesday looking amend the bylaws to try to get TJ fired but instead the board told him that the bylaws will be reviewed by a subcommittee for possible changes after the spring season. Who's on the subcommittee thus far? X, Y, & CT... "Anyone else want on?" I raised my hand for sure and you could here his exhale.

He's really shown a bad side of himself and we'll see if he keeps his position on the board. Luckily all of the coach positions including TJ, for the spring were passed via vote today so he's not going anywhere but this guy CT will be doing his damnedest to try and do bad stuff to him I presume.
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Old 12-11-2020, 02:26 PM   #65
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God I fucking hate some people. That CT guy sounds like a little dick motherfucker for sure.
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Old 12-13-2020, 08:54 PM   #66
Flasch186
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Season ended today. Couldn't end soon enough for me. Aiden finished batting sub .250 and finished the season in the throes of the fear/stepping out bucket. I'm not sure how to fix it and I've heard everything from "it takes time" to "hit him with the ball a few times." I've bought striding stuff and will try some RNT work with bands but it's really gotta be him that figures this out with his coaches. It's too draining for me to try to explain it to him, what's happening, have him be unable to unwilling to make a conscious effort to fight the urge and then have him crying to me later that night or in the week about his troubles hitting. So so often he comes to me crying looking for help and then when I try it devolves into an argument or he seems to make progress in the cage or off the tee but it doesn't translate to his ABs in a game. It's as if we did nothing at all. I'm hopeful that he can fix it before the next spring season's tryouts or else he may be back on the B team or not on either team at all at this rate.
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Old 12-13-2020, 10:27 PM   #67
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If it's not fun for him, and it's not benefiting him anymore.....

It's a very hard decision to make for your kids, and it's impossible for them to make themselves. I hope you will find the sweet spot where he can believe in himself and get back to the good times again.
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Old 12-15-2020, 01:23 PM   #68
Flasch186
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We're in 4 alarm fire mode:

Hitting coach working daily on building up the confidence again
New pitching coach converted to hitting coach on those days to attack the same problem
at night the wife and I along with him are doing some of the videos we see online: Tennis ball throwing to the back, tee work, RNT work, you name it...

Strange to see him lock up like this and potentially risk not even being able to play the game anymore if he can't come to grips with it.
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Old 12-15-2020, 01:58 PM   #69
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It sounds like he is getting burnt out. I work with kids and it is relatively common when they spend too much time on one activity because (like anything else) there are typically a lot of quicker, easier gains up front and then, making a little bit of improvement can require a lot of time and effort. Hopefully you guys can find some middle ground between him completely giving up the sport and being full bore.

Maybe it would be a good idea to take a "holiday" from playing and try to get into something else for a few months or establish a set amount of time per day/week to do drills.

Here is an overview on burnout in youth sports - it is definitely a thing:
Burnout In Kids Sports | Children's Hospital Colorado
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Old 12-15-2020, 07:45 PM   #70
Flasch186
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It sounds like he is getting burnt out. I work with kids and it is relatively common when they spend too much time on one activity because (like anything else) there are typically a lot of quicker, easier gains up front and then, making a little bit of improvement can require a lot of time and effort. Hopefully you guys can find some middle ground between him completely giving up the sport and being full bore.

Maybe it would be a good idea to take a "holiday" from playing and try to get into something else for a few months or establish a set amount of time per day/week to do drills.

Here is an overview on burnout in youth sports - it is definitely a thing:
Burnout In Kids Sports | Children's Hospital Colorado

It does read like some of the things in there. It's problematic in that some of those overlap with his 'gifted' status but it is something I'll need to keep an eye on.

The season has ended and the team's on hiatus so now it's just practicing and trying to get rid of the 'fear of being hit by the ball' until the end of January when Try-Outs begin again.

Only playing a singular sport is new to us since he had always done Wrestling too until 1 year ago but now it's just baseball which is fortuitous because we'd have quit anything that was indoors.

FWIW, today he was a new kid. Enthused and focusing on the Virtuous cycle I had talked to him about wherein proper effort and prep before a rep can result possibly in a good outcome which will encourage him to do the same next time. He was caught in an obsessive vicious cycle with the HBP stuff and that happens with him in school on studies too when he's struggling on something. He didn't seem to be scared by a pitch at all and prior to his BP the coach was not going to pitch but use a machine but when I walked in with about :15 minutes left he was throwing to him and the kid was barreling. The coach commented that it was like the kid he knew had somehow come back today.
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Old 12-16-2020, 01:24 AM   #71
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He also sounds like he's a "type A perfectionist" which I'm familiar with. He will put himself under incredible amounts of pressure to reach not only the high standards the team sets, but to exceed those, to meet his own, which may be completely unrealistic and unattainable. He probably feels like he should be doing well on the "A" team and he's being extra hard on himself and coming to grips with his own struggles just isn't something he is mature enough to face, so he keeps pushing, while crumbling inside. Which leads to the loss of self confidence that you're seeing as well. There is a way to get the most out of that personality, but from my own experience with myself and the son of mine who is like me, is that counseling and therapists are going to be a necessity. He can still break through and find success, but he's just bringing in some of this extra baggage that is going to throw a few more roadblocks up when he does hit rough patches.
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Old 12-16-2020, 02:18 AM   #72
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Catching up, had to re-read a few past posts.

Random thoughts solely fwiw ... outside coaching & its potential impact outside the lines is probably underestimated at times. Will's tennis instructor eventually became an influence as much off the court as on it, an honest ear as well as voice. Not saying this instructor is that person for your son but hopefully somebody will be at some point in his life. I think a voice that isn't related to them, that they don't suspect is saying nice things because they "have to", etc, has tremendous value.

-- Surprisingly (I suspect) I'm not in the "needs a few HBPs" school of thought. I had some fear issues with the fastest couple pitchers I ever saw, I couldn't K fast enough against the fastest, just wanted out of the box. But getting plunked a few times didn't improve that.

Mostly improved (never did shake it against that one guy) through surviving other scary stuff that occurred in the normal course of play & life, and learning broadly how to manage fear.

-- I'm also a bit middle ground about one sport vs multi sport, falling into the "YMMV" camp more than most I seem to run across. I've seen younger athletes who thrived with both approaches, I've also seen burnout (or physically wear out) with both approaches, leading me to believe that's best course is a case by case thing. My unsolicited advice would be let him plot that course (or at least you mark the course based on the cues you pick up from him). Kids almost always tell us - one way or another - what they really want.
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Old 12-16-2020, 07:01 AM   #73
Flasch186
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He also sounds like he's a "type A perfectionist" which I'm familiar with. He will put himself under incredible amounts of pressure to reach not only the high standards the team sets, but to exceed those, to meet his own, which may be completely unrealistic and unattainable. He probably feels like he should be doing well on the "A" team and he's being extra hard on himself and coming to grips with his own struggles just isn't something he is mature enough to face, so he keeps pushing, while crumbling inside. Which leads to the loss of self confidence that you're seeing as well. There is a way to get the most out of that personality, but from my own experience with myself and the son of mine who is like me, is that counseling and therapists are going to be a necessity. He can still break through and find success, but he's just bringing in some of this extra baggage that is going to throw a few more roadblocks up when he does hit rough patches.

We started counseling about 2 weeks ago, 3rd session was Tuesday. You hit the nail on the head there as that's part of his gifted diagnosis. Way too hard on himself and anything less than near immediate success is really tough to watch in how he reacts to it.

FWIW he was great after I posted last night too. A really positive attitude about just about everything which was a nice relief considering what I thought the day was going to be like after a rough counseling session in the morning where we discussed new boundaries and time limits to his access to recreational technology.
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Old 12-16-2020, 11:53 AM   #74
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If even half of what you've written is true then I'm horrified at how your youth league operates.

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Originally Posted by Flasch186 View Post
I just throw out the idea that my son simply gets to practice and be a reserve and if a kid on the team goes on vacation or gets sick, my son will be ready to come in and play whatever role he wants. No expectations just really the practice reps and extra practice work would do any kid well.

Did you ever consider just letting your son play for a REC team?
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Old 12-16-2020, 11:58 AM   #75
Flasch186
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He's driven to play Advanced ball and loves the game. He's just hard on himself and obsessive apparently about being HBP but perhaps he'll work through it quickly.
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Old 12-16-2020, 03:56 PM   #76
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He's driven to play Advanced ball and loves the game. He's just hard on himself and obsessive apparently about being HBP but perhaps he'll work through it quickly.

Cool. I hope everything works out well for the two of you.

Do you mind going a little more in depth about the new athletic association? That thing seems fishy to me. What benefits did they tout as reason for joining their association that made your league decide to join up with them?
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Old 12-16-2020, 04:34 PM   #77
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Our league didn’t join up with the other association. We said no.


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Old 12-22-2020, 09:18 AM   #78
Flasch186
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I think he's OCD or Obsessive at the very least. Some practices or BP's he's fine and now, others, he dives down a well of "I can't stop stepping out" which in turn he steps out... I am too scared so he inevitably just works himself up into a frenzy of fear. My wife and I also believe there's a bit of "show" to it too. Ie. I'm going to fail so let me make sure that everyone sees the reasoning now for my eventual failure. This would include being so skittish after a BP session that an underhanded toss from the coach who's trying to reason with him (again) is met with 'jumpiness' and a show of fear to a semi-ridiculous nature. Therapy.

Anyways, I'm just along for the ride and have tried to create an atmosphere for him and other kids where they can hopefully thrive in. Shrug. In the end, as the coach says it just takes time.
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Old 12-22-2020, 12:58 PM   #79
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His escalation when he's in that situation is his response to his feeling of a lack of control about the whole thing. Part of it is 'look I can't stop' to show you that he's trying, and the other part is his genuine alarm that he can't seem to find the 'right' solution to keep from doing it and he's panicking and doesn't seem to be able to deescalate.

He's definitely in his own head. Does he struggle with deescalation in other situations in his life? Are there other situations where he does seem to be able to get control and overcome that stress and panic? If there is, I'd try and recreate what he is able to do in those situations, and try to get him to apply those to this one. It's a place to start. If it seems like things aren't going anywhere, removal from the environment, such as a room, or outside, just away from that one, and take the time to talk and listen can be helpful. It's not a fast process and it takes a lot of patience. Sometimes your sessions will be cut, and if he's got a problem with that, tell him that BP isn't as important as he is, and that once HE is squared away and ready, then you can go back and hit some more.

I think it sounds like you're doing the right thing here. The therapist will have other helpful ideas and plans too, of course. There's no 'quick fix' here.
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Old 12-22-2020, 03:37 PM   #80
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This is a good book for kids that struggle with OCD:

https://www.amazon.com/What-When-Bra...s%2C152&sr=8-1

It's also helpful for parents in understanding it.
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Old 12-22-2020, 09:59 PM   #81
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PM is a daily struggle. After the rough night the coach invited Aiden to a one on one bp today at the field. I didn’t go but the wife took him and he hit one out off the hc on overhand... so today’s he’s a rocket.

Its just so troubling to not be able to flatten it all out to a middle. We talked about that to the therapist today. We really just want his road to eventual inevitable success to be less pained.


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Old 12-30-2020, 09:06 PM   #82
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The Jerkwad CT sent out his Bylaw proposal to the subcommittee with an email that he'd like to have it approved (ostensibly via an email reply). I replied no to the whole of them and said it needed to be discussed and debated and that there were bullet point items that were:

"There are things in them that are nebulous, arbitrary, subjective, unnecessarily punitive and unfair to parents that need to be fleshed out in my opinion"

I also emailed the chairperson and told him a brief history on why I feel that there is a vendetta and it is exposed via the added bullet points CT tried to slip into the upcoming bylaw proposal:

no post-season reviews of coaches by their parents
Only a subjective interview by a subcommittee that he would control and sway via his power and barter
an explicit discouragement that any All-Star coach be strongly discouraged from coaching any team elsewhere at any age (see above why this is a direct attack on my son's coach)
Any ejections come to his subcommittee for discipline (again a power play)

The chair wrote back that nothing will be passed now and this will be discussed in the spring for a vote for Fall.

CT is such a dick. If I wasn't there fighting back against his Machiavelli BS I'm not sure what things would look like.
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Old 01-13-2021, 08:47 AM   #83
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Update:

No real controversy regarding CT. Hes quited down and his only move was he had all the coaches sign refreshed ethics guidelines which should be done anyways.

Regarding Aiden he’s been playing well especially hitting in practices and has seemed to have gotten over the fear of being hit albeit not with live pitching yet. Hes not obsessing though so that’s good.

He was going to try out for his middle school team in addition to hopefully making the A team for his little league all stars but he has a rocky mental couple of practices leading in and we got them all stars coach involved and he recommended that Aiden not play middle school ball as well. Aiden would’ve been on the field with 12-14 year olds for practices and a new coach and Aiden still had his break downs at the field. It would be a bad look and one they potentially affects the way he’s treated back at school if a melt down goes noticed. So we pulled the plug on it before he tried out.

We think it was the best especially for pretty low quality baseball and an incredibly busy spring of all stars.

The plan this spring, assuming he makes the A team, is to play in some “majors” tournaments. If we do well in those apparently it means something like playing in something special or something. I dunno but it sounded cool. I’m not sure we’re ready but \_(ツ)_/


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Old 01-15-2021, 09:53 PM   #84
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I feel bad for me 4 years ago

Aiden tried out tonight for spring all stars and it was a very odd night.

His glove and arm were his weakness and hitting his strength. Well tonight it was opposite. Fielding and arm was good hitting not so much.

It was such a rough night at the plate that he was crying afterwards that he won’t make the team. It was that bad at the plate. That being said, last Wednesday night he was incredible at the plate in front of the coaches so...

They let me know that they kept him on the A team

Whew, back on the grind now.

He’s gotta fix his confidence at the plate though. He’s just gotta believe in himself and when he does he crushes.


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Old 01-17-2021, 06:05 PM   #85
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I feel bad for me 4 years ago

Aiden went to the field with me today and we bunted a bucket and he did great as he really hasn’t done that that much. Then he received at first base for another kid Who’s dad was hitting him grounders at 3rd and he did great. Then back to the machine where he started hitting and was doing pretty well. His all stars coach showed up with his HS son and had Aiden swing with the heavier wooden bat before going back to his -8 and BOOM! 4 dingers! It was a very very good day in regards to that although when the coach threw live bp at the end he let some of his doubts creep back in and he found a way to view the day with some Gray in it as he likes to do. It was incredible though.


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Old 01-19-2021, 11:48 AM   #86
Flasch186
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We're switching therapists to a Sportshealth Therapist that does the following:

​I work consistently with my clients to:
Create and modify winning habits, behaviors, and routines.
Overcome mental barriers that limit performance.
Maintain focus and discipline in the face of adversity.
Foster consistent motivation and energy.
Develop unshakeable confidence.

​Clients learn to accomplish this through:
Positive self-talk
Managing emotional energy
Relaxation skills
Managing distractions
Calming the inner mental-audience members
Consistent present moment awareness
Rehearsed visualization for performance


He played well last night in a scrimmage (2) games, pitched very well but made one minor mistake at first, and ended up crying slightly about it. Then at the plate he was frozen again. HE walked twice but just couldn't swing (again). On base he's fine, stole a bunch of bases, slid, scored but at the plate he's just fearful again [which is nuts after hitting 4 homers the day before].
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Old 01-21-2021, 08:53 AM   #87
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I feel bad for me 4 years ago

I think it was PM above who mentioned the perfectionism thing. Yesterday was a terrific example of it and the pain he and we are going through.

He has struggled to hit in games and he knows it obviously but he’s on the A team and getting better all of the time.

They held a dbl header yesterday and he was good in the field, caught a ripped liner and did everything else well.

At the plate he hit a sharp grounder to SS that caused the kid to bobble and Aiden beat it out and then he ripped another grounder past that SS for a single in addition to a walk and he showed hesitancy intermittently throughout them all but fought it. He Stole a bunch of bases and scored as well.

I complimented him on his effort his willingness to give himself his best chance and his willingness to forgive himself on one error he made because he was playing SS for the first time in his life and covered the bat at serving on a stolen base attempt and got discombobulated on the catch and tag because he’s a lefty.

Anyways I saw a lot of progress and at home he absolutely melted down. In the worst, I’m stupid, I can’t hit in games, my hits were grounders and not lovers or home runs, I don’t deserve anything, I should be kicked off of the team, I’m at the bottom of the lineup because I suck, etc etc

Anyways just posting out here for those in it with me. Ashley and I meet the new sports therapy coach (therapist) today to cover everything to her. She’s three times as expensive as the first girl but this is more tailored towards confidence building, tool building, etc and she works with professional athletes like gardener minshew etc.

I really think everything he’s dealing with currently in baseball and his head translates perfectly to life so I see it as attacking one by attacking the other. I just hope that he can enjoy all of this because he’s so gifted but just torments himself so. He loves the game so much but anything less then perfection is a failure. We have to allow him to love him someone and enjoy this. Writing isn’t an option as that would set the tone for the rest of his life and he says he wants a career in and around baseball (I think he’d be a great player agent) so it’s not that there isn’t the desire there it’s just that he’s wired through us etc to take the harder road I guess.


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Old 01-31-2021, 01:26 PM   #88
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Aiden had an interesting weekend

Still seems tentative but it hinges upon his mental space power at bat.

He went 1-2 across 3 games and walked twice as well.

Played good in the field and really only got down on himself when the team fell apart in game 3 and that was more of an overall getting down versus just himself and he wasn’t down on himself on the way home. One if his teammates spent the night so that they wouldn’t even think about the 19-1 drubbing they took.

I wish I could figure out the things that work for him and don’t to keep him mentally in it but it just seems so random and fragile.

Alas we plod on 2 team practices this week, 1 lesson, 1 therapy session and homework (he gets straight As thus far). Bought a few books on the mental aspect of things that got good reviews and he continues to say he loves the game and wants a career in and around it so that’s good and I’m supportive of course.

In the meantime our girls have started softball and that’s hilarious at 6 & 4.


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Old 02-25-2021, 04:01 PM   #89
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So for this week Aiden has been a new kid

Dedicated to listening, yessir and no sir and really putting in the work with no melt Downs or attitudes. He’s been so on point that his coach even said to him that if he can keep this head space he’ll be one of the best kids playing ball. We play on a tournament this weekend and I’m excited to see if this weekend is the weekend where he can keep his head in the game. He’s been absolutely dewatering the ball in the cage and his fielding has been off the charts. His pitching had been serviceable and he’s one of the fastest kids on the team. Just looking for him to allow it to happen versus fighting against the current all of the time.


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Old 02-28-2021, 04:44 PM   #90
Flasch186
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Tourney weekend

Saturday the bad Aiden showed up. Down unhappy depressed about his performance so we had another talk that night and I begged him to try some of the mental tools everyone is giving him, namely fill his head with a repetitive saying, "See the ball." Or something to not allow negative thoughts to come in.

Well, Sunday he was much better, and got a critical 2 out line drive single to CF and scored a game-tying run. Later in the game, he grounded out to the 2nd baseman moving the runner on second over. Importantly his attitude was great.

He pitched servicably too.

Practice tomorrow and we keep on chugging.
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Old 03-02-2021, 07:18 AM   #91
Flasch186
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Aiden got taken to the proverbial woodshed last night in practice. He started to get down on himself on an infield drill and it became evident that the HC was going to try a new tactic with him...toughness. I like it. He had him doing push-ups every time he quit on a ball or half-assed something. He said, "Son, you're either going to give me all you got without negativity or quit half-assing it or you're going to have a bigger chest than me and stronger leg muscles from running poles."

At the plate during a live hitting session against one of the kids, he was tentative, no-load, and stepping out. Eventually striking out looking. He's still scared of being hit so he doesn't load and steps out because he's not committed to hitting. He sulked off to the dugout where he cried.

Then at BP after fieldwork, he was negative about himself and unwilling to give it his all without being challenged. The coach literally sat in his cage and if he didn't swing with everything he had on a swing he had to do 5 pushups. At the end of practice, he gave him another "come to Jesus" talk but this one less loving and more matter-of-fact.

At home, he tried the, "I'm not stepping out." talk so I showed him a video of his ABs and he couldn't argue it but admitted he's scared.

So with temporary fire lit, he asked me to go to the cages with him today after school/work and I'm going to hit him a few times with the ball since others have said that that needs to happen.

It sucks that he's put himself in this position of getting known as tentative and fearful and quitting when that was the opposite of what he was known for on the B team. Even the B team coach (who is a tougher master chief chap) has ventured to me that he can't understand what happened and why this is happening. I don't know either but it's a toxic mix of perfectionism, indescribable fear, and a lack of willingness to 'give up' to the coaching/training and try new things when it counts.

Another day hopefully something will snap free. I told him last night that this is a binary choice in Baseball. He's either going to figure this fear at the plate thing out or quit the game. In some sports there are things that happen rarely that you don't really have to worry about happening but in baseball, you're going to see pitches...every AB. So he's either going to work on this, hard, or he's going to have to truly consider picking up a different sport.
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Old 03-02-2021, 10:54 AM   #92
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Boy, that sounds really hard. It's such a tough spot to be in. He's so young, and you guys have been working so hard with him. Is his behavior affecting his pecking order among the other players on the team? Are they getting frustrated with him? How did he respond to the coach giving him tough love? Did he feel like he was being singled out and 'punished'?

I get the feeling that you guys are right up against the wall here. I think you're right on the money that you're at that point where he either breaks through or moves on. I know that a perfectionist would rather run through a wall than admit any sort of failure, especially if they feel like they have a lot to lose from it. Whether it's from the label that he gets from the rest of the team, the coach, his parents, or the things he tells himself inside, those things all feel very personal to him and the fear of that, the fear of failing is such a strong drive to keep going, but it also holds him back too. I think that for perfectionists, it's a good thing to fail this way. It forces you to process what happened, and how you felt as you go through that acceptance, and as time goes on, you process the feelings that you have after the fact. Learn to accept that it's better to fail when it's just not meant to be, and to move on, and grow, rather than to continue to beat yourself up outside and inside and tell yourself that you're too good to fail. That sort of 'too good to fail' mentality can spill out as a teen and adult. As a teen you see kids that keep secrets, harm themselves, drink, or simply hang around with kids who allow them to feel like they are good enough to be around, and who give them outlets that are far from the 'perfectionist' image. As a grown up, you see adults that find bad relationships and allow people to drag them into bad situations where they don't allow themselves to leave from because they can't admit that they can't fix it, or that they are somehow responsible for the relationship, and if it's bad, they need to try harder.

And I'll tell you again, I come at this from all sides, I've been in that situation, I've done the therapy in college (and beyond) to deal with the scars I drug myself through growing up, and I've dealt with it as a parent of my own son, and as someone with a background in Psych. I am sure that you and your wife are really reaching the end of your rope. You guys have been so patient and loving through all this and have tried to give him every opportunity to succeed. I'm just not sure that he's developed enough to be able to work his way out of this, or you'd have seen more progress by now and I'm not sure that he feels like he can work any harder. It's ok to tell him that it's ok to walk away, and I'm sure you have. You can paint a picture of life for him that doesn't include baseball and you can show him that life will go on, and he can still enjoy baseball even if he's not out there playing it. Saying and talking about those things give him alternatives to think about and give him an alternative narrative inside that he can use to accept alternative outcomes and he can give himself permission to move on to do other things and for a perfectionist, that allowing, giving the self permission, is critical to growth and healing.
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Old 03-02-2021, 11:40 AM   #93
JonInMiddleGA
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It's ok to tell him that it's ok to walk away, and I'm sure you have. You can paint a picture of life for him that doesn't include baseball and you can show him that life will go on, and he can still enjoy baseball even if he's not out there playing it. Saying and talking about those things give him alternatives to think about and give him an alternative narrative inside that he can use to accept alternative outcomes and he can give himself permission to move on to do other things and for a perfectionist, that allowing, giving the self permission, is critical to growth and healing.

This echoes several conversations that I (in particular) had with Will over the years. There comes a point where you have to decide whether you're in or you're out. (Typing that, I'm reminded of pets who want the door opened but then stand in the threshold half in & half out).

And I won't lie: more often than not, the ultimate decision was "out". But that's okay too I think, because you can't be master-of-literally-ALL-things. You DO have to pick and choose where to devote time & energy, we all do.

Being a kid is tough.
Being a parent is tough.

And though it doesn't do anything to feed the proverbial bulldog, I really am sorry that he/you/your family is going through this Flasch.
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Old 03-02-2021, 12:16 PM   #94
Flasch186
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heard.

Last night it was often brought up that if you don't want to do this then fine lets do something else but you're going to play team sport (philosophically the wife and I think a lot of good comes from team sport participation). He expresses a strong desire in many ways that he does want this but the fear of getting hit is a big problem. The perfetcionism and then effort fade is another.

He says all the things that lead you to believe that he does in fact want this. He has admitted the problem verbally so I'm hopeful that that will again allow us to peel back some of this in a trust fall kind of way. I just think two things... he's gotta grow up as you mentioned and he's gotta get hit so he can see that he wants to hit the ball much more than he gives a shit about whether he gets hit or not.

Strange days man strange days.
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Old 03-02-2021, 03:51 PM   #95
Flasch186
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I spoke with his private coach for a long while today on the phone and he basically said that it is age v reps v being a 'thinker'. We're all just going to keep working on it as long as Aiden expresses a desire to want to do it.
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Old 03-03-2021, 10:56 AM   #96
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I guess this has become more of a therapy thead for me, sorry but I'll pst kind of like a journal just to get it out.

I talked with Aiden, the wife and I did, and asked him if he really wanted this...baseball, competitive, this team, this group, or just rec, and he really vehemently through tears expressed his desire to want to do this.

So we ended up in the garage working through the mentality of being more aggressive, loading more aggressively - shoulder to chin which will naturally encourage the body to stay closed for longer and physically make it harder to step out as dramatically as he is.

We talked about the battle, the desire to hit/move the lineup along has to be greater than the fear of getting hit. I hit him a few times with a softer tee-ball while going through the process of load etc but in the end, this is his own mental battle.

I've given him the tools and framework to fight, his coaches have expressed a desire to want to see him succeed, his therapist has worked on it & we'll see if he joins in the fight.

He has practice tonight and it's live bp/hitting.
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Old 04-16-2021, 07:30 AM   #97
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We had a midseason tryout for Summer all Stars on Wednesday and Aiden finished 6th out of about 30+ kids that tried out and it was verbally stated that he'd be on the team again. Hopefully, he starts s maturing and stops with the histrionics.
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Old 04-16-2021, 10:13 AM   #98
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Missed some of the earlier discussion, but man does it resonate with me about my younger daughter.

She is an incredibly gifted athlete. One of those kids with completely effortless athletic movement. Loves sports, loves watching and talking about college, pros, etc. But on the field/court, she can't get out of her own head. She's afraid to mess up, she doesn't have confidence in herself so she goes out of her way to be a spectator more than a participant, and she seems scared of the ball.

She a point guard in basketball, and most of the time it looks to me like she goes out of her way to pass the ball and just watch. When there's any contact, she shies away - even on layups, she allows the defender to guide her away from the rim.

In softball, she bails on every pitch. Occasionally she'll snap out of it against slower pitchers and hit the ball squarely, but most of the time it's just off the end of the bat because she's bailing. Luckily, she can slap and that forward motion can cure some of the issue. In the OF, the same thing - if there's a pop-up just behind the IF or in the gap, she won't take charge and go get it. She's happy to let someone else get it for fear or screwing up (my take on it).

Now, she's 5'7" and 118 lbs and has a long history of injuries, including several concussions. So I think a good bit of it is related to that legit fear - especially in basketball, because they treat girls like buffoons who don't have the skill to play the game so they allow them to beat each other up rather than call fouls - but I also think she's just missing that competitive gene. She's a natural athlete without the mindset to maximize her potential. It's so frustrating to watch and not be able to fix - it's not like it's a mechanical swing issue, or that she needs to practice dribbling, etc. It's in her damn head.

About a decade ago, if you had told me Caitlin would have the college career and Mackenzie would top out as an average HS player, I would not have believed it. Caitlin's largely unathletic, but she mastered one skill (pitching), knows how to compete and can handle the pressure of the position. Mackenzie hasn't developed skill-wise like she can because she won't free her mind enough to allow it to happen. And now she's finishing her junior year in HS, so it's almost over.
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Old 04-16-2021, 04:19 PM   #99
Flasch186
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The only thing that/s helped Aiden stay in on the pitch is an absolute target to aim the ball at LC when hitting (he's a lefty). With that target in mind, he almost has to stay in.
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Old 04-16-2021, 04:27 PM   #100
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That's kinda the same mindset as a slapper. She gets a running start and is basically trying to put it into the 5/6 hole or power slap it into the LC gap.
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