When the Original Poster’s (OP) daughter develops a profound love for gymnastics, their encouraging journey quickly turns into a challenging dilemma as her height seems to be an obstacle in her ambitious dream of Olympic participation and D1 scholarships. Torn between their child’s passion and the reality of the sport, the family faces an intense conflict about the future of her gymnastics career. When the family, after much debate, makes a decision that brings momentary peace, it is met with a surprising and emotionally taxing twist.
A Budding Gymnast
OP’s young daughter starts gymnastics. The girl becomes deeply attached to the sport, spending hours upon hours training and competing in high-level competitions. Although surprised by their daughter’s commitment, OP and her spouse continue to support her passion.
The Growing Concern
The daughter has grown significantly taller, reaching 5’7″ at the tender age of twelve. Her height starts causing her difficulties in performing her routines, leading to more frequent injuries. Despite this, her ambition grows stronger: she dreams of obtaining a D1 scholarship or participating in the Olympics.
The Odds Against Her
Despite her determination and commitment, OP grows concerned about her daughter’s chances of success. The world of gymnastics is often cruel to taller participants, and her chances of getting into a D1 scholarship or even the Olympics seem to diminish. The financial cost and time commitment begin to seem insurmountable to OP and her spouse.
The Family Struggles
OP finds her family life suffering due to the time and effort they’ve invested in their daughter’s gymnastics. Hours spent driving to and from training sessions and competitions and the financial strain are becoming a major burden. Moreover, their daughter’s academics are slipping, further complicating their situation.
OP and her husband make the difficult decision to cease their daughter’s gymnastics training. The choice isn’t easy, considering how much effort their daughter has put into the sport. They agree that it’s better to confront this issue sooner rather than later.
The Heartbreaking News
OP informs her daughter about the decision, which devastates the young girl. The mother tries to comfort her, acknowledging her hard work and suggesting she apply it to other areas such as school or another sport. She highlights her daughter’s proficiency in tennis, suggesting she could have significant potential there.
Her daughter reacts poorly to the news, expressing her heartbreak in tears and isolation. She even contemplates extreme measures to reduce her height, hoping that it might improve her chances in gymnastics. Her refusal to eat adds another layer of concern for OP.
A Family Divided
OP’s husband begins to waver over their decision, influenced by their upset daughter’s reaction. Additionally, their extended family begins advocating for their daughter’s continuation in gymnastics. Offers of financial aid and logistical support start pouring in, intensifying the conflict.
OP is torn, doubting her initial decision. She acknowledges that if her daughter were shorter or not struggling due to her height, she would unconditionally support her passion. She wonders if she should give in to the pressure and let her daughter continue or stay firm in her belief that it’s for the best.
The Asserted Right
OP realizes that as the primary financial supporter and the one most involved in her daughter’s training, she holds the right to make this decision. She rationalizes that as a parent, she should have the final say in her child’s well-being.
The Daughter’s Persistence
Despite the initial shock and grief, the daughter doesn’t lose her determination. She continues expressing her passion for gymnastics and willingness to overcome obstacles. Her persistence further complicates the family situation.
A Growing Schism
The family becomes increasingly divided over the issue. On one side, there are those advocating for the daughter’s dreams and aspirations, and on the other, those who fear for her well-being and future.
A Turning Point
Their daughter brings forth a new argument. She presents a list of successful tall gymnasts, arguing that her height should not be a deciding factor. This new development forces OP and her husband to reconsider their decision.
Was The Mother’s Behavior Appropriate?
OP posts her story online for feedback. The readers in the forum had a lot of mixed views on the matter. Here are some of their responses:
One reader said, “I was a dancer and too tall for anything but the corps in ballet. I continued to dance into my late teen years. I was aware of my limitations, but dance was never taken from me. You are taking something from your daughter without discussing it or trying to work something out.”
Another Commenter Thinks
Another responder wrote, “You’re spending thousands of dollars and hundreds of hours, and commenters say, ‘but she loves it.’ Her grades and social life are suffering, and she’s injuring herself. Parents are supposed to step in when necessary.”
A Third View on The Story
A different person stated, “This sport is ridiculously expensive, time-consuming, and if she cuts back on training, even in the slightest, her chances of permanently injuring herself skyrocket. She will never be able to compete as she likes, and cutting back will drastically change her body as she continues into puberty.”
A Final Perspective on the Matter
Another reader commented, “OP has been clear that it’s financially difficult, that her daughter’s grades are suffering, and then it feels challenging to spend all this money and time. If the daughter is willing to compromise, stand down from the excessive training, and get her grades up.”
What Do You Think?
What are your thoughts on their actions?
What would you have done in this situation?
This story is inspired by a thread from an online forum.