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Ballet Talk for Dancers
Treefrog

What's your limit?

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thedriver
So I guess another limit is that we won't allow ballet to steal her childhood.

motherof5 – Beautifully stated, you have given me something to ponder. Thank You

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vicarious

Our line has become a bungy cord. We're very excited about our move to Pittsfield ME for dd to attend Bossov Ballet Theatre. Not only will that be wonderful for dd but MCI is a great high school, we love our new house, the town is excellent, church is closer. What I thought would be something I would never do for one child, looks now like it will be best thing for the whole family.

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dancingthrulife

It seems our line moves each and every year. When we think we couldn't do possibly any more driving back and forth from the studio, next year's schedule comes out and lo and behold, the number of trips have increased from previous years!

We let our DD make the decision of what is too much, as far as her scheduling. So far NOTHING is too much, though next year should be an interesting year, with an increased dance schedule, and entering middle school where the academic and social pressures are an increase from elementary school.

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BW

Another thread, originally started by Joyofaleap about her daughter's going away to a residential ballet program has recently morphed into one about the financial costs to families for their dancers... I knew there was an oldie but a goodie about this - so I've brought it back up for some air. Another old one that hasn't seen the light of day in a while is When is it time to stop?.

 

By bringing these two threads up, my intent is not to lecture or wag a finger at anyone. But it's pretty hard to give good, solid financial advice to anyone unless you're their accountant/tax person and understand the big picture of the family's finances...and it's pretty difficult to give good, solid, realistic advice to someone about their dancer's chances of making it unless one is an excellent judge of all things ballet and has actually seen the dancer in question.

 

I think both of these old threads offer a variety of opinions on the general subjects and that they all offer good food for thought and maybe they'll be helpful again. :D

Edited by BW

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dancetaxi

Thanks BW, the timing is pretty darn good. :D

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calamitous

This has been a very interesting read as we are contemplating needing to make a change. Currently DD is at a performing arts school, so dance costs and driving are about as minimal as could be possible. However, the school (not dance portion) is struggling with the quality of the academics and overall discipline. DD is thinking she needs a stronger academic school. We have some options, but all would mean adding dance to our financial and time budgets. We could no doubt with some refiguring swing the money, but trying to manage the driving time is more tricky.

DD is "commited" to the school for the next school year, but we may be doing some refiguring in the next year.

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dancerdriver

For me the limit is just the decision to send him to a residency program. When you adopt a child at an advanced age, letting him go before the traditional 18 is the ultimate sacrifice.

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livers

This is a very interesting thread-thanks for bringing it back up. I get asked this question a lot-friends-family etc. Well meaning people who think we are crazy for doing what we do but that’s a whole other thread…

 

I remember very well the day my daughter took an interest in ballet-we were taking a walk around the neighborhood and peaked in the window of a store front ballet studio-she told me “I think I want to try that” She was eight and there it began. We were lucky enough two years later to find a pre professional school –I saw an ad for their nutcracker and I thought to myself “wouldn’t that be fun”. I couldn’t imagine back when she was eight that by the time she was 13, she would be commuting downtown 6 days a week or that I would be sending her away for five weeks every summer. I have always let her be the driving force and we have tried to support her any way we can. I did say no before-to her first SI opportunity when I didn’t think we could swing it financially.

As for the original question-what’s your limit? Who knows-I will let you know when I get there.

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tutu maker 4 her

I read this entire thread with interest and at first it seemed as if there were alot of different opinions on this, but as I continued to think about it I found a reassuring, common thread - that no matter where each parent thought they were drawing the "line," each was willing to evaluate situations one at a time.

 

I find that very comforting - Ballet training starts out so deceptively simple and then builds and builds until it seems to take over, it's really hard to hold the line. But I wanted to send out ** Applause ** :thumbsup: all around for all those parents who take on the "line." How will we know what the answer is, if we never ask the question??

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mygurl

Although I agree with the limits that Treefrog has outlined, I have to say there have been some grey areas over the years. As my DD approaches senior year, I am glad that staying in school and enjoying her high school years, is something we stuck to. Almost everyone at her studio is homeschooled, and she has wished to be homeschooled when the going has gotten rough over the years. We always allowed her "mental health" days, when she was feeling overwhelmed, so that helped with managing dance and school. We have stayed within our financial constraints, as we have two other kids. That has been hard at times, but I knew that going into debt because of dance would be the ruination of alot of things.

My only regrets were the times I couldn't do things with my younger nondancing daughter. She has been the one who has always had to come along for the ride, and sometimes miss things. Hopefully, we will be making it up to her over the next four years as she enters high school.

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Rhapsody

If there is a line, we haven't hit it yet. Whoever was talking about the abusive rehearsal teacher, good for you. I agree that is a line not to cross. But what if the abuse was not physical, but mental? For example, the teacher that makes comments about their weight. They psycho, driven coach like teacher determined to turn my child into the next Pavlova. That one would creep me out as well.

 

It's just not worth it to me. That would rob my child of her childhood. I don't think my daughter's childhood is being hijacked by ballet. I think she just has the added dimension of ballet in her childhood. Makes it magical in a way. Congrats to all those who've supported their kids dreams.

 

Right now we face (I face) an additional hour of driving each weekday morning and then another hour back twice a week. How do people do long commutes? I want a chauffeur! What a novel idea. That's within my limit. How many lawns do you think I'd have to mow to make that happen? :yes:

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Mrs. Stahlbaum

I just read my post on this thread from two years ago where I wrote that I would not drive two hours to ballet. Well, that changed about six months after I wrote that :unsure:.

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