What Do You Do When Your Kid Doesn’t Like Doing What You Like?
When you have a kid, it’s easy to sit back and imagine all the things you’re going to do together. But what happens when they don’t like doing what you do. What then?
If you’re a young parent, chances are you’re already envisioning all the things you want to show your kids. If you enjoy sports, you’re already picturing going to games on a brisk fall Sunday or heading out to their little league games to cheer them on. Maybe you like shopping and you can’t wait to take your little mini-me along on a weekend long shopping spree.
Then they get a little older and they begin to make their own decisions and you find that they don’t like sports at all…or they hate shopping!
That’s what happened to Tom Brady from the New England Patriots. Even as a Bills fan, I can admit that he is probably the best quarterback I’ve ever seen (even if I HAD to watch him beat my team twice every season). He’s arguably one of the most successful athletes of all time. You would imagine that his kids would be into sports too right?
According to an article in Men’s Health Magazine Tom really struggled when he found out that his youngest son Benny absolutely HATES sports.
"I thought he'd be just like Jack (Tom’s 11 year old son who loves sports). So I was like, 'C'mon, let's do this.' And he was like, 'Nope.' . . . It was hard for me. I was [thinking], 'What do you mean? He's a boy. He should just do all these things that I do." - Tom Brady
But to Brady’s credit, he figured it out early. You don’t jam the things you love down your kids’ throats until they like it, you let them decide on their own and encourage them. But do those things with your kids every chance you get.
Now I just have to go do what he wants to do. When we do that, we have the best time. He's like, 'OMG, Dad, you're so funny.' He loves joking, and I joke back." - Tom Brady
I’ll be honest…I thought the same thing about my kids. I thought for sure my son would love football. I lived and breathed it on the field for the first 18 years of my life and have watched every day since then. He was sure to love it like would, right?
I took him to a game. He read the program and didn’t watch a single play. I’ve asked him to watch games at home with me. He hated it.
But when it comes to Superhero movies, we don’t go without each other. That’s our thing. I never really paid that much attention to superheroes when I was a kid. But now, I don’t miss them. Why? Because it’s what my son really likes to do with me. It wasn’t fun when I was trying to make him like what I like. I just like being around him. So it doesn’t matter much what we’re doing. As long as he’s having fun…I’m having fun.
It’s not just sports either. Maybe you love everything to do with motors…trucks, tractors, and cars. If your kid doesn’t like it, making them stand and hold a wrench while you fix up a beater in your garage probably isn’t going to change their minds about them. Trust me…I was that kid. But when my dad became a coach and started to show interest in football with me…that became OUR thing. I still have my best memories of my dad standing on the sidelines with me or sitting in an armchair with me while we both yelled at the Bills.
As a parent, having fun with your kids is all you can ask for. Make it about them and you'll easily have more fun. Sometimes it takes parents a long time to figure that part out. They won’t always like what you like. But believe me…if you show interest in what they like, they’re going to appreciate it with you so much more.