There’s No Crying in Baseball….but there is….

We lost a tough Little League game in extra innings after being up by 8 runs.  We have a mixed squad of 9, 10, 11, and 12 year old boys.  There was barely a dry eye in the dugout after the game.  There were also quite a few tears during the game after perceived disappointments in the field or at the plate, my own son being one of the most noticeable.

As a Coach (and Dad), I found myself telling the boys to stop crying…Sadly, I may have even portrayed anger at their tears.

Crying is natural and very human.  It’s a natural response to pain, frustration, and suffering.  Crying is not weakness.  Hiding your emotions is not tough…

I need to do a better job of helping these young boys express their emotions and develop skills to use their emotions as a strength.

Real men have compassion and empathy (and do cry!).  Boys need to understand this and know that a “cry” is human, healthy, and authentic.

I’m disappointed I was caught up in the moment and didn’t embrace the boys’ emotions being expressed and recognize an opportunity to teach self-regulation tools for their psychological growth and confidence.

I gave my son an extra hug tonight and reminded him how much unconditional love I have for him…and I am pretty sure he saw the tears in my eyes…