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Ballet Talk for Dancers

Does your spouse give you a hard time about dance?

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My hubby is supportive in that he pays for DD's dance, but he complains a lot about not having family dinners together on dance nights, and especially at performance weeks when there's practice every night and I'm not around to cook supper.

I have to drag him to the performances and recitals. He loves to see DD dance, but he still complains about having to sit through a two hour show to see her for a few minutes.

He thinks she should be studying music more than dance. How do you handle that? Or does no one's spouse complain? I guess I shouldn't worry about it. I just tell him that dance is what she wants to do and we should support her in it.

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How many children do you have? Being the male spouse and also working away from home, as my 4 kids got older, I would come home and be a little depressed because the realization that my babies were developing their own lives. I would suggest you ask your husband directly why he likes music better? Is it just that he doesn't enjoy watching ballet? It is hard to deal with the fact that activities cut into family time. So what I do is try to maximize the quality of whatever time I get with my kids. Maybe your husband, if he is feeling disconected from your daughter, should bite the bullet and learn a little more about ballet, take her to class, rehearsals, etc. He may not enjoy it, but it may help him feel a little more secure in his relationship with DD. I can tell you, a year ago I felt like I would never have any understanding of my youngest son and what he wants out of life. But I decided not to let it go without trying, and I'm not "Mr. Ballet" by any means, but I have found an interesting world I never knew existed. Maybe you should get hubby to read BT4D. Maybe he will get a little more appreciation of DD's interest and who knows....maybe build some of his own.

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I`ve been following this board closely lately and noticed there weren`t too many dads. Nice to hear a male voice. I am spouse-free, but my ex is involved in our kids` lives and shuttles them around so he can spend time with them but then complains about being a taxi service. They have always had a lot of activities and he complains less now that they have had to pick dance and baseball as almost exclusive focus because of the amount of time they require. There are quite a few dads involved at our studio helping with fundraising and other kinds of activities. Maybe if he learned a bit about ballet it might help? Perhaps he feels excluded or in an alien land?

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We have been a ballet family for the better part of 12 years and while my husband has always been a big help with the girls no matter what the activity he has complained on and off for years. I think that it is partly because at many times over the years, especially at performance times, it seems like ballet was all he had time for. It is sometimes draining for everyone especially with both of us working as well as the girls' school obligations. Also the chance of becoming a professional ballet dancer are so slim that I think at times it seems like a lot of work for possibly no career in the end. Maybe your husband feels music is more productive although that it a difficult thing to get into as well. Music does however, keep the kids home more bevause a lot of practice is done at home. I would just talk to him and find out what his problems with ballet all and find a way to compromise. Maybe you can cook meals ahead so he has a good meal to come home to when there are rehersals or maybe you can adjust the schedule to have more meals together even if it is sandwiches at the studio. Good luck!

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Would he be complaining as much if she were playing soccer or softball? I tell my husband when he grumbles (which really is rarely) that he only has to attend performances a couple times of year. Traditional sports actually involve more spectating than dance.

Nutcracker and Recital are non-negotiable. Last year, DD was Clara for 8 performances of which my husband sat through three, so he really did his duty last year. He also takes his turn doing driving duty when necessary, although I try to relieve him of that burden as much as possible. Since I work as much as he does (we need two incomes to pay for all the dance!!) he would never think about expecting me to cook. Whoever is home on a particular night cooks, although we miss the family time.

Do you have other children? My biggest struggle is trying to make sure my son doesn't get short changed due to DD's schedule taking up so much of our time.

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Haha, that was one of my arguments this last season-what if she played sports and was in a tournament and we had to travel out of town, etc.

We do have a son , 14, who does mtn. bike racing and boy scouts. Hubby and son have been out of town a lot this summer and they are gone a lot of weekends to bike races.

Basically, hubby does the 'boy stuff' and I do the 'girl stuff'. Maybe it is more of a boy/girl thing. I don't think he'd go to the ballet if his DD wasn't in it.

Last year was the first time that she's had a lot of extra rehearsals. Her youth ensemble was involved in 3 performances with the company and then the year end recital.

I think it's only going to get worse though, with an extra weeknight of dance classes this next year. Plus extra $$$$.

I work part-time (1 day per week), so he expects me to cook supper every night except the night that I work. I need to find more quick fix meals.


Thanks everyone for your replies. Good to hear from a dad also :(

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I am lucky, my DH is never home for dinner (1 or 2 nights max) b/c hes a chef. So there are never complaints about not having dinner together.


I am a SAHM so I get to do all the driving, volunterring and such. We have Nut this year, so DH will have to come out for at least 1 show.


Generally he doesnt complain. He just isnt as involved as I am.

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My husband and I have the same arrangement. He has a more flexible works schedule than I do, so he is able to start the dinner (he's the better cook) and do afternoon school pickups. I do morning school dropoffs and evening ballet dropoffs/pickups after I get off work. Because it is shared, he feels like a part of it and is supportive. I don't think this is just a ballet thing; I know other sports families with kids on travel teams, regional/national teams that are always on the road. They have to struggle to find family time as well. If your child did music, I don't think it would be any different because I have a friend whose child is an accomplished violinist. Her son has very demanding practice and performance schedules. The bottom line is that everyone is "busy" and we all have to work at finding time for each other and "balance."

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  • 1 month later...

I am glad to find many threads hitting so close to home !


My husband has complained a bit lately, especially since the recent 'drama' regarding whether to switch ballet schools or not. I still remember his face beaming and then "falling", when at age 4 after the last class, my older daughter was asked to transfer to another school because she shows unusual promise. His first response was "surely we don't want her to be a professinal ballerina!"


Fast forward 3 years and now there are 3 of us taking ballet classes (2 daughters and myself), I may have convinced him enough to try out a few adult Intro to Ballet classes , since it coincides with pick-up times. Over the last few years because of our daughter's participation in Nutcracker etc, he has told me of his increased appreciation of ballet. One of the reasons why I am so supportive of my daughter's ballet training is because I see how easily she masters what I struggle with, how every part of her body moves as one, the head, the hands etc, not just getting the steps right, and being able to exude a certain grace. I am hoping my husband, by trying out a few classes, will make him appreciate ballet even more. Steps that look so easy and effortless are really hard until one tries it.

Edited by YPK
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