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Is this conversation horrible and inappropriate, or maybe I just don't understand the "jokey" relationships amongst children and coaches?

(71 Posts)
Evelight Mon 29-Feb-16 02:43:15

Conversation as reported to me by DS(10)

DS friend: so where were you- you missed a couple of sessions?
DS: I had a belly ache and I couldn't come.

DS coach comes towards them and joins conversation : Did you shit yourself? Did you? I always shit myself when I have a belly ache.

DS and DS friend exchange looks, mumble "ok then" and back off.

DS told me this conversation in a mixture of laughter and horror at a teacher using this language- this is not usual, is it? Certainly DS thought it was the first time a coach/authority figure had used this language to him.

Also, since then, he exclaims "did you shit yourself" once in a while and laughs hysterically.

KeyserSophie Mon 29-Feb-16 03:23:41

Yes, I'd say inappropriate, weird and also, although I say "shit" all the time, i'd prefer coaches not to say it (albeit I wouldnt hold them to the same language standards as school teachers). Coaches can have a laugh with the kids without resorting to toilet humour and swearing.

Evelight Mon 29-Feb-16 03:28:50

I don't know if he was trying to be funny or showing sympathy? Either way it didn't work as both DS and his friend were weirded out by his interjection,.

I agree with not holding coaches to the same standard as teachers, also I understand there is this mysterious "locker room culture" where some otherwise inappropriate behaviour is "ok"- but surely not 10 yr olds...

MadamDeathstare Mon 29-Feb-16 03:34:28

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Evelight Mon 29-Feb-16 03:38:43

well, so far it is us who are reaping the results... gah I hate dealing with weird random slightly-off behaviour...

NotMeNotYouNotAnyone Mon 29-Feb-16 04:45:45

Not okay to swear in front of a 10 year old.

An accidental swear when you hurt yourself is excusable but the joke in the OP isn't.

MattDillonsPants Mon 29-Feb-16 05:27:32

It's a big, fat RED flag and I would be complaining to whoever is in charge. I certainly would not want my child in his care. He's inappropriate and stupid at best and getting a thrill at worst.

christinarossetti Mon 29-Feb-16 05:51:17

Yes, either intentionally or not, the coach is gauging children's reaction to something inappropriate and unboundaried.

At the least is offensive and weird and I agree to report this to his line manager.

IdaJones Mon 29-Feb-16 06:07:11

Seems a strange thing to say. I wouldn't be bothered if say he had hurt himself and accidentally said shit in front of the children, but saying "Did you shit yourself? Did you? I always shit myself when I have a belly ache." is cringeworthy.

bearleftmonkeyright Mon 29-Feb-16 06:19:03

That is completely inappropriate. Horrible thing to say to 10 year olds and in my opinion designed to humiliate.

mathanxiety Mon 29-Feb-16 06:21:01

I agree with ChristinaRosetti.

redcaryellowcar Mon 29-Feb-16 06:33:16

I think it's absolutely not ok. I'm not sure which sport he or she is coaching, but I would suggest you contact the governing body for that sport, eg football association for football, rfu for rugby, lta for tennis (a Google of 'sport and governing body' should bring up details.) I suggest you ask them about qualifications and training of the coach and tell them what happens. I used to work for a governing body of sport and this would have been taken very seriously.

KeyserSophie Mon 29-Feb-16 06:34:11

If he'd said something like "Ah well, at least you got some exercise running to the loo" (I'm assuming it's a sport activity- apologies if not), that might have been fairly amusing to the average 10 year old, but to be so "in your face" without even an attempt at a joke just seems bizarre

SueLawleyandNicholasWitchell Mon 29-Feb-16 06:36:45

He sounds like an immature prat.

The way they reacted indicates they are aware of how inappropriate it is.

MattDillonsPants Mon 29-Feb-16 08:22:46

I would worry like Christina that he was testing the waters. Abusers do this. They begin with inappropriate language in order to normalise that...then when the next and worse thing happens, that too seems less awful than it should and slowly kids and sometimes adults begin to feel they can't say anything as they "let" all those other things happen.

So first it's a comment about shitting yourself. Next it's a comment about your bottom. Then it's about penises...then it's a, report and don't let your son near him.

theycallmemellojello Mon 29-Feb-16 08:41:43

Completely agree that it comes across as designed to test boundaries. It's not even the swearing (which isn't great) but the allusion to shitting yourself - a really intimate image. And at any rate it's not ok to talk to kids (or anyone) about their bodies like that in the first place. I'd be moving my kid.

Evelight Mon 29-Feb-16 12:08:07

fortunately this happened at the very last game - as far as I know, the season went smoothly and nothing like this had happened before.

If it had happened earlier, I would have thought of reporting, but I also would have been worried that he would retaliate by not letting my son have fair field time? And then by the time that got sorted out, what should be an enjoyable activity turn to a major stress/pain?

He's a dad himself. ughgh.

Next season starts in May I think, hopefully he will not have anything to do with DS at that point.

MattDillonsPants Mon 29-Feb-16 12:13:38

Well I don't think you can HOPE he won't have anything to do with DS! You must make it so and you must also report this man. He could do worse.

BertPuttocks Mon 29-Feb-16 12:16:51

The sports coach I know has a very jokey relationship with the club members. There is absolutely no way that he would ever use that kind of language during a session. He doesn't even speak that way to the older teenagers or fellow coaches, let alone to a 10yr-old.

Evelight Mon 29-Feb-16 12:33:44

Hey Matt- I'm afraid i do subscribe to the "if you ignore something unpleasant hard enough it will go away" school of thought smile

Having said that, the thread has certainly given me food for thought. I might drop an e-mail without naming any names- just asking them to remind coaches to refrain from swearing etc?

christinarossetti Mon 29-Feb-16 13:17:39

It's entirely your call Evelight but abusers rely completely on other adults subscribing to the 'if you ignore something unpleasant hard enough it will go away' school of thought.

For me, if I thought he would have any further contact with any children in this capacity, I would report him.

christinarossetti Mon 29-Feb-16 13:18:51

Sorry, just read about considering an e-mail without naming names? Why are you wanting to protect this man?

It's not the swearing that's the primary problem, it's the context which made is so utterly inappropriate.

MattDillonsPants Mon 29-Feb-16 13:24:49

Well I have to say it's people who keep their mouths shut about the seemingly small things who are often the most shocked when things escalate. Why would you not name names OP? Are you feeling some urge to protect this awful man?

TooMuchOfEverything Mon 29-Feb-16 13:31:04


I think you should

1. Make sure your son knows he did a BRILLIANT job in telling you about this.
2. Talk to the club safeguarding person. There is always an appointed person.

My DC are 9 and 11 and do a variety of clubs. Yes the coaches may be jocular but what your DS encountered is just bloody WIERD.

ThorsLady Mon 29-Feb-16 13:32:06

I'd also be hard pressed to report this.

Yes, it was a bit weird... but I also wouldn't trust a 10 yr old to fully convey the tone in which the coach said it.

If you've had a season without any problems and this randomly happened - I personally wouldn't risk ruining a mans career for it.

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