Hockey Decision

We weighed the pros and cons and ultimately decided not to enroll G in Ice Hockey this season.  It was a tough decision — I never want to be the parent that says G can’t do something because of his autism.  Even if that does prove to be the case at the time, I’d rather take the attitude that he can’t do something until we help him improve on a particular foundation skill.  But the fact of the matter is that because G is autistic we have more prep work to do in order to set him up for success than the average parent.  I think he would love hockey and I think it could work out for him, but I think it is just too much to attempt at this time. 

He is having a fabulously successful school year so far but it has only been 2 months.  I worry about adding some new challenge like 2 practices a week with games on Saturdays and have him backslide in school because he’s overwhelmed or because he doesn’t have the afternoon downtime that is important.  The season started a week ago and we’ve found that G is most successful when he starts on day one.  He knows when he’s the odd one out and gets frustrated when everyone knows what to do while he is learning the routine.  He has a much easier time when he learns the routine at the same time as all the other kids.  Also helpful is when DH and I can find out what that routine will be ahead of day one so we can prep him a bit.  And yet another factor is that ski PE starts mid December and he’s really excited about it.  I feel like adding something on top of this is just too much for G.  Over-scheduling is a common parental pitfall that is particularly perilous for us.  (can you say the last sentence 5 times?)

So, we decided to skip it this year and focus on laying the groundwork for academic success.  He’s expressed interest in soccer.  That would start up in the spring and extend into summer and by the end of the school year we’ll be ready to take a risk.  If we put it on the calendar now, we can start preparing to tackle that challenge.  Who knew kids sports could be such a complex issue!

Published in: on November 10, 2008 at 8:32 pm  Comments (2)  

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2 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. I hope you’re feeling some relief just having made the decision. It’s amazing how much stress we put on ourselves just in the decision-making part of parenting, isnt it?

  2. We’re feeling much relief, and got some validation for this decision this afternoon. G’s kindergarten teacher pulled me aside to talk about a change in mood and cooperation levels this week. I don’t want to anticipate the worst, but it seems like our period of calm has expired. Adding another activity might have been a disaster!

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