>A Dilemma

>I hit the wall last night and I hit it hard. My family was attending a friend’s St. Patrick’s Day party – a party I had been looking forward to for weeks because it’s fun and some of the guests are other families from my daughter’s dance school. The party got off to a great start – good food, good beer and good conversation which was not about Irish dancing. The party went along well for an hour or two then one of the moms began to talk about the school in not so pleasant terms. It’s not the first time it’s happened. In fact it’s become a part of her routine when she is at any function involving Irish dance.

I first met this particular mom four years ago when our daughters started dancing together. We hung out in the lobby with other parents and socialized and all was good. However, last year things took an ugly turn when her daughter began attending feisianna and quickly went from Beginner 2 to Novice. Since then she has been on a quest to promote her daughter and while there’s nothing really wrong with that – it’s the way that she’s been going about it that is unpleasant. She pulled her daughter off the Oireachtas team because she felt the other dancers weren’t quality dancers going so far as to say that certain girls “sucked”, (that team took 8th place out of 21 teams at the Oireachtas without her daughter by the way), is constantly comparing and praising another Irish dance school while being extremely critical of our school.

We all like to think that our children are great and I’m no exception however does that mean we publicly degrade other dancers, the school and the owner in the process? For me that answer is no. It also brings up the question of what to do about a fellow parent who does just that.  Irish dance is a fun activity/sport but it’s also difficult when the competition becomes so important to some parents that it supercedes everything else – including friendships and feelings. Yes, at some point we all have had concerns about the school our kids go to whether that’s the costumes they wear for the parades, how classes are taught, if changes should be made to choreography, etc. However, this particular parent is completely unhappy and as a board member of the school I’m wondering today what my responsibility to the organization is. Do I say something to our owner – tell her that a parent is publicly bashing dancers and that I feel she is being harmful to the organization, tell this particular parent that if she’s this unhappy why not consider another school or avoid the situation all together? I’ve never been the run and tell the teacher type and have a feeling that move would backfire – the road to hell and good intentions you know the story. Plus this woman’s daughter dances in the same age bracket as mine so will it appear I have sour grapes? If I do nothing while this parent is complaining then am I in some way enabling? Do nothing and go about my business? That’s not my style either but as they say, you can’t control other people you can only control yourself. This person is not going to change and as long she is involved with our school I need to find a way to deal with her attitude and behavior because I will be the one who is miserable not her.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: