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Ballet Talk for Dancers

Help! I might be a crazy ballet mom!


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DON'T feel guilty. We all can only do the best we can do at a given point. If we each had a crystal ball to look into the futures of our children, I am certain we would do things differently. But we don't. Look forward with anticipation of what great things will come. And, hope that you can think clearly and intuitively at the next major crossing.



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Guest Chedva

I guess that's the great dilemma of parenting - the guilt thing. We feel guilty if we push and dd decides that she missed out on "being a kid" and doesn't want to (or can't) do ballet professionally, or we feel guilty about not pushing and being in tu2mama's position.


We can only do what we can do. Remember, no matter what, in our children's future there will be a therapist or friend telling them we were wrong! :)

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Actually, tu2mama, I would not expect the parents to know that the decision the child made at that time could be crucial. It should have been explained by the teacher, both to you and to your daughter. If that was explained, and the child still made that decision, then there is no way you can take that as guilt on your part. If it was not explained, you are still not guilty for allowing her to make her choices because if you are not a former dancer yourself, how would you know?


That is one of the reasons we are here, and, hopefully enlightening the moms and dads out there. :) But it's our job to do that. You can't be expected to know if there is no one telling you. :rolleyes:

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I have found this board to be incredibly enlightening! (Thanks so much to Ms. Leigh and all the professionals, moderators, and Mom's and Dad's)


There are, unfortunately, so many dance schools and teachers, (and some even in so called "pre-professional" schools) that either don't offer very much information or offer incorrect information.


It wasn't really until I found this board that I feel I was able to ask the RIGHT questions and become pro-active in my dd's pursuit.


I do not post that often, but, I am constantly reading and found that my dd's ballet studies have only just begun. We wasted alot of time thinking she was doing the right thing only to find out that she had to RE-DO so much. Please don't feel like you are crazy, I am also one of those who spend one hour (one way) to drive dd to an incredible school. If this is your dd's passion and you physical and financially can accomodate them, don't let anyone make you feel like a fool. If we as their parents don't become their best advocate who will.


The worst thing that can happen is they will choose another career path, but, be incredible, disiplined, refined, and possible a patron of the arts. Good Luck !

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Thanks everyone! I still feel guilty,maybe that puts me in the crazy ballet mom club or is there a martyr mom club? We were informed that the high scool dance thing would not be good but felt that our daughter needed to find out for herself and did she ever! The studio she left was one of those that she could never go back because the AD was so upset at her leaving. Now she's in a catch 22 position where she wants to teach, feeling it's her last option but can't get into the college program here. If she wants to continue it's up to her to find a way. I sure wish that these boards had been around a few years back.

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tutumama- I think we all second guess ourselves over decisions that we make. Whose to say that if you had made your dd not dance at the high school-that she wouldn't have totally quit dance. You just never know what will happen. Parenting is hard work. I remember someone telling me when I was complaining about how difficult toddlers were that those were the easy years. Now I believe them!


I don't know you or your dd but I am confident that the right thing for her will come along. She may have to expand her horizons and look out of the box. Perhaps the doors locally are closed but there is something much better somewhere else in the future.


Last year we were faced with a difficult decision regarding dance. I really felt like there were no other options at times. Looking back I am thankful for all of the hard times that we went through because it forced us to find better training for our daughter. If anyone had told me a year ago what wonderful opportunities she would have today I really wouldn't have believed them! It was a blessing in disguise! :blink::D


Hang in there- you are a great mom! If you weren't you wouldn't be beating yourself up so much about it!

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At what age should dd make the decision that ballet is the avenue she wishes to pursue? Is there an age when it is too late?


My dd is entering high school next year and I wonder if she would have a better experience with school if she were to join the dance team or some other extra curricular activity. She doesn't have a strong interest in the dance team, but would easily make it. She is interested in playing for the tennis team. Is there a "safe" amount of time she could cut back on ballet classes?


I want her to have opportunities to explore other areas of life, although she has played soccer and taken piano, both given up for ballet.


I also think I worry too much and want to be a member of the crazy ballet moms.

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ruth if your daughter is seriously considering a pro career in ballet, then the school dance team and tennis are out of the question. Generally speaking (yes, there are exceptions), both of those activities will create physical 'contradictions'.

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My daughter is seriously considering a pro career, but keeping her options open. This year was her first year auditioning for summer intensives and she was accepted to ABT and Joffrey Midwest although not with scholarships, so she will not be attending either of those due to my recent unemployment. She will be attending Blue Lake dance ensemble with a full scholarship, but I realize that is not as intense as the others. That is all she auditioned for. It just seems to me, that 14 is so young to be making life decisions.

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ruth I reread your post and now I am going to modify my answer: if your daughter is expressing interest in those activities, then she should pursue them, with a full understanding of the potential conflicts. If her ballet teacher is a good communicator, then she/he would be the best source of this communication, as often what is taken from 'the mother' is greeted with all the mother/daughter agenda :blink:


That said, I don't believe that 14 is too young for life choices; just that not all 14 year-olds are at that place. For many, the 'sacrifices' are not sacrificial at all. Some don't blink when given choices, others see and weigh options. I learned to drive at 29; it was a 'no-brainer' when driver's ed would mean compromising ballet classes, others chose the car keys dangled in front of them...

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Just a reply to the first question about driving distances to a good school. I luck out completely because our excellent, pre-pro, etc...school is 10 minutes from my house ! (This was great at Nutcracker time :thumbsup: 0. However, I do know folks who do have to drive quite a distance to get their DKs to class. I guess we all just want to do whats best for our DKs, and still be able to take other kids to baseball, maybe get dinner on at a reasonable time,etc... :blink: . I don't think it's being crazy, just trying to be supportive of our kids . :D

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I am also one of the crazy ballet Moms who went to work at 6am so she could get off early 3 days a week to drive an hour each way with traffic. However, even if my ds never danced another step I wouldn't give up all that time in the car listening to him talk about his day, the latest video game.... I just let him ramble. We ended up with a great relationship in part because I was willing to show my support of his dreams (even though I hate driving I4) and then just listening as he tried to figure out who he was and where he was going.


Having your parents believe in you and support you means a lot regardless of if you ever go pro.

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tu2mama, please don't beat yourself up! Our dk's have to make choices in their lives and we must allow them to. When my daughter was entering her freshman year there was great pressure to try out for the dance team. Up til that point I assumed her goals were to pursure a career in ballet. There were many arguments in the end she joined. I had to back off for if I didn't it would have been my fault for everything that would happen in the future. She danced for the dance team and kept up her ballet classes the best she could. When audition season came around she was very disappointed in the results. She did not get into her top choice however she did she a scholarship to her third choice. I think at that point she realized on her own that the choice she made was not beneficial to her goals. Honestly, if you had asked my opinion at that time I would have she high school was more important. My point here is that there are time we must allow our children to make decisions( we can guide) but sometime they need to spread their wings to see if they can fly. She may have lost a little that year but she needed to realize what she really wanted. She ended up quitting (as she put it) it was not helping her attain her goals only hinder them. She came to this conclusion on her own. Just remember another door is opening for your daughter. I wish you and her good luck for the future.

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The studio she left was one of those that she could never go back because the AD was so upset at her leaving.

Tu2mama – Maybe you and your DD should approach this AD again. She might reconsider and allow your daughter to take classes again. Your DD may not be with her former classmates, but returning in a lower level would show strength of character and a desire to dance. It would also be an object lesson for other young dancers at the studio who are faced with similar choices. I hope things work out for the best, no matter what you and she decide.

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Guest Barrefly'sDad

My dd (10) was actually demoted because of parents complaints that thier dd's are the same age and should be at the same level. My daughter is a serious and talented dancer, and has trained since before 3. Even at the higher level, I felt the school was not challenging her enough. We quit the school immediatly. She is now at 2 better ballet schools at the higher level and is being challenged.

Both her new schools do not allow parent politicing. One school is very large, and

is structured to avoid it, the other is small, but the director/instructor doesn't take any B.S. from parents. I really feel lucky to find these schools.

I just which I hadn't comitted my dd to a jazz competition studio, now I have to wait till august before my contract is fulfilled and I can take more class' at these

other 2 ballet schools. I guess we live and learn.

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