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Ballet Talk for Dancers

Crisis in Confidence for a 15 year old dancer


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I saw this topic on "View New Posts" and to my surprise I realize that I started it! My DD is 16.....soon to be 17. She has not slowed down one iota even with that particular night with the crisis in confidence. Believe me.....there have been many more nights just like that one. On the other hand, there have been some beautiful ones as well! She is so invested in dancing professionally now. I worry about that. There are times that I wish she would give up or have given up so she could have a "normal" high school experience versus the rushing around that she does juggling a real high school and those friends and dancing and her ballet friends. She works at a frenetic, stressful pace.


All we can do is hope for the best and support our dancing kids to the best extent we can. It is a tough road though. Much harder than I ever realized!

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mtm here's our story. Previous to 16 DD danced to support her work in theatre, at 16ish she decided she wanted to do theatre to support dance. She went to her SI at 16, had a great time, felt improved, ... but at that point determined she really wanted to dance just for herself (by the way it is SO much easier to see al this in retrospect). At that times she decided she wanted to look for colleges where she could dance but also do an arts administration or similar to go with it, because she was sure she did not want to dance for a career. At this time (almost 18 and done YEAH with college auditions) she has done better at auditions than she expected, she has enjoyed very nice casting, she dances for herself. Dh and I are surprised how clear she is in her determination that dance will be a part of who she is because she has chosen it, but it is not the career for her.


DH and I also have a hard time seeing her step away from performance - she has worked in theatre since 10. We tell her if she just didn this ___ a little more, she could make it. Does this make us stage parents, I hope not, but I do think it is harder for us to see her stepping away from performance than it is for her.


I think 15, 16, and 17 are times when kids make decisions about who they are and though they may not be permanent decisions they are palying with this. Well my DD was and seems really happy with her decisions.

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Thank you for sharing your family stories. It's heartening to hear various scenarios resulting in kids being satisfied with their decisions. I appreciate the challenge for teenagers, particularly those attending full time public high schools with extracurricular engagements, to maintain a sense of joy when engaged in any activities which demand huge investments of time and effort. I also admire the courage these young people show in repeatedly putting themselves out there for auditions, performances, etc. In addition, so many of our kids are dedicated students in academic realms, play instruments, etc. I know I have marvelled at the talent and dedication I've observed in my daughter's peer group. They are hard workers!! It's no wonder at some point, some, if not all school aged dancers, feel a bit stretched and question their competence in some realms, e.g. dance progress. Achieving balance is no easy task.

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