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Dance Moms

(57 Posts)
TrollMummy Mon 27-Mar-17 17:50:37

Anyone else notice a new breed of super keen tiger dance mums at their child's dance school and at competitions? DD has recently come back to dance and some of the mums are starting to remind me of the TV show Dance Moms. Has it always been like this or are more and more mums now hell bent on their child being a star now?

lornaballet Wed 29-Mar-17 02:15:11

. I think there have always been a few as you describe and the competition aspect can bring out the worst in some.
However, I do wonder if in the last few years it has got more intense.

lornaballet Wed 29-Mar-17 02:18:29

But definitely yes, I can count on two hands easily the number of parents who boldly pronounce their child is going to be a ballerina or a star.

TrollMummy Wed 29-Mar-17 20:35:30

It's not that I think parents shouldn't be supportive of their children but some of things that I've heard from these mums talking and critiquing other kids in the class are just beyond belief.

Witchend Wed 29-Mar-17 21:11:11

I think there's always a few and it depends on whether they outnumber the nice parents or not.

13 years ago I had a dad square up to me because I dared to say his little darling wasn't the leader all the time in the babies class.
I'd been in the classes for a term and knew the teacher took a strict rotation so every child got their turn.

He was doing the faux embarrassed "oh it's so embarrassing Fay's always the leader, don't know what everyone else thinks of her."
One of the other mothers said gently that her dd had said she was leader last week, and he said "oh no, I expect some of the other children like to think they're leaders, but Fay's always chosen..."
The mother was clearly a little (quietly) upset at this, so I spoke up about it being in turns and he squared up to me.

Funniest thing was they came out and he shouts out "Fay, who was leader today?" Fay says she was, then her friend pipes up with:
"No, you wanted to be, but Miss Toni said it wasn't your turn and then you sulked and wouldn't do good toes naughty toes."
Whole lot of parents was one big grin

dodobookends Wed 29-Mar-17 21:15:19

these mums talking and critiquing other kids in the class

This just isn't right, is it? Why do some people think that it's OK to openly criticise other people's children? So judgemental, and completely unfair - not only on the victims but on their own children who grow up thinking that this sort of thing is normal and to be expected.

Aside from everything else, the parents are not trained dance teachers/qualified experts, so their opinions probably aren't actually worth having anyway.

My dc was never into the competition scene thankfully, so we only occasionally came across this sort of attitude, but I hear on the grapevine that it does seem to be becoming more common.

lornaballet Thu 30-Mar-17 00:10:05

The critical comments do seem to be more prevalent amongst the competition team parents, also at competitions. But they can also come out at audition and exam time.

I'd like to think they're in a minority. My opinion is that people shouldn't pass negative comments about other dancers and their abilities.

TrollMummy Thu 30-Mar-17 14:57:45

It's amazing that ferrying your child to and from dance and sewing on a bit of ballet ribbon suddenly makes you an expert in teaching dancegrin

user1473882712 Fri 31-Mar-17 08:56:26

I can see it happening in dcs gymnastics, one mum in particular makes out her dd's are far more advanced than they actually are on Fb & gushes about how amazing they are. She flew into a tizzy when 3 kids in her daughters group were moved onto the the next level for comp & then proceeded to try & isolate them & their mums, honestly they were frozen out! Mum is a queen b type & dd's have to be centre of attention at the gym... It's ridiculous

Witchend Fri 31-Mar-17 09:46:52

user I sat in front of a family like this at dd2's first club competition.

They commented the entire time on how much worse every other child in the group (dd2 wasn't in their group) was and when their child was up how brilliantly they were doing.
Come medal time, (quite a large group, I think 10 children) they were buzzing with excitement. I heard the dad say they better be prepared for a quick getaway as the other parents would be too jealous to talk. grin
First discipline bronze. Child called. They're making comments on how could that child get bronze they were so weak. Silver... well if that child got silver there was no way their child didn't have gold. Gold... and they were half way on their feet with applause before they realised it wasn't their child.
Repeat for other two disciplines.
Half the family marched out with faces like thunder, and the dad went to tell the judges that they didn't know how to judge...
I was slightly interested to note that when the whole results were published their dc was 10th/9th in each one.

lornaballet Fri 31-Mar-17 10:39:30

I would say that I've found far fewer incidences of critical behaviour from parents in our gymnastics club, and competitive gymnastics, than competitive dance. I think it might be because the sports club members and parents identify strongly with wanting the club to do well, if that makes sense, it's not all about the individual. Our club does quite well in gym internationally, too.

lornaballet Fri 31-Mar-17 10:41:15

There's always one, though, witchend grin

cantkeepawayforever Fri 31-Mar-17 10:53:58

One of the reasons I REALLY like DD's dance school is that there is very little of this. There is a lot of mutual support and congratulation of fellow students, and the head of the school would come down like a ton of bricks on anything she saw as being other than 'sportsmanlike' - congratulating winners wherever they are from etc.

fantased Fri 31-Mar-17 11:12:32

Know of plenty like this. Parents nice as you like to the dancers, teachers and their parents faces, but there's a lot of whispering discussion in the waiting area, where the nastiness comes out. Lots of my child is so advanced for their age, and other boasting. One woman considered all children to be a threat to her child, no matter what their age.

Apparently one child left our old school because they overheard a parent saying she wasn't very good. She was a once a week ballet dancer, didn't want to be a ballerina or dance as a career, it was a hobby only, but the parents still have to comment.

Some parents, with the children who are very good, and successful in championships etc, won't even sit in the parents waiting area (in another school) because of the jealousy and passive aggression and nasty comments.

fantased Fri 31-Mar-17 11:17:02

There is lots of open support and public congratulation, nobody would be silly enough not to do that, it's behind the scenes, and afterwards that the problem lies.

Isadora2007 Fri 31-Mar-17 11:17:04

My dd (7) was told at a gymnastics competition by a team Mate that her dad said it didn't matter where she placed as long as she beat dd. 😳

cantkeepawayforever Fri 31-Mar-17 11:41:02

Sorry, should have been clearer - DD's dance teacher would not tolerate such behaviour in the changing rooms (where she is usually found between festival classes), in the corridor, while waiting, back at the dance studios - anywhere. Expectations of parents are as clear as they are for dancers.

fantased Fri 31-Mar-17 12:13:09

They don't do it in front of the dance teachers. The only way it comes to a teachers attention, I've found, is if a parent complains. I have children at four dance schools (eldest late teens) and have used several others over the years, it does seem to be getting worse, this behaviour. It might not even be obvious initially, on joining a school. Some schools are better than others, of course.

Teachers may also be aware of this type of gossip, as it will also be critical of the teachers themselves at times, but without any specific complaint they can't do very much. Some teachers, on receiving complaint will be careful not to lose the talented pupil, bringing prestige to the school, of a gossiping parent.

cantkeepawayforever Fri 31-Mar-17 13:56:39

Fantased, I can only report my own experience as a parent, and DD's experience as a dancer in the same school for going on 10 years.

It is, genuinely, very rare in this particular school, and my observation is that this is linked to the culture and expectations of the school's leadership. A talented dancer with a very tiger dance mum - the only one I can remember who didn't rapidly pick up 'the way we do things round here' - was managed out of the school pretty firmly when she was still very young.

fantased Fri 31-Mar-17 14:02:35

Fantased, I can only report my own experience as a parent

As can I. My comments weren't personal to you, so sorry if you felt this was so. Not all schools are alike, as I said.

TrollMummy Fri 31-Mar-17 15:07:56

I agree that in DDs dance school none of these things are ever said in front of the dance teachers, these ladies know how to play the game. In fact it is all smiles and false congratulations until the teacher is out of earshot.

Not all parents are like this and I'm sure some are oblivious to it all. It's just a change that I've noticed in the last few years. It's more and more about being the no. 1 star rather than being a hobby and the drive seems to be coming from the parents.

GraciesMansion Fri 31-Mar-17 21:55:20

Ive noticed this at my dc's school, just in the last couple of years, but almost in reverse. My dd dances with children a few years older than her and even though she's only 9 she's been on the end of some awful comments from parents about how she shouldn't be in that grade, she's too little, teachers favourite etc. Luckily most of it seems to go over her head but I hear it!

Ledkr Fri 31-Mar-17 23:46:11

Thing is, it gets worse too. I danced professionally for a bit and the bitching was horrendous at times!
Chireographers and directors can be <ahem.> difficult too grin
Dd left a big school due to the nastiness and clique and is now at a smaller non competitive one which is lovely apart from one Mum who thinks she knows it all.
I just keep quiet as she yaps on. One day she will find out I know a bit more than she realises!

twattymctwatterson Sat 01-Apr-17 00:02:01

I'm 36 and there were plenty of them when I was a dancer in my teens

user1473882712 Sat 01-Apr-17 00:43:22

One mum in our gym club #tags herself #proudgymmum #dancemum & tags her husband #dedicatedgymdad etc at every opportunity. It's quite funny!!!
I think gymnastics & dance which requires kids to start very young (age 3-4) brings out the worst in some parents...

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