Is it fair to keep a child doing something they hate?

We all know that children go from loving something one second to hating something the next. Apart from chocolate, they always love chocolate. Oh, and making a mess, they never hate making a mess.


So is it fair to keep a child doing something they hate? Even if it is something essential?

For me, I'm talking about my son and his swimming lessons...


He has had around 30 lessons or so and has about 5 certificates. He started off being a bit scared and he would cry, scream, complain every week for about 5 weeks. After that point, he seemed to get over it and started to enjoy them. He was doing well in his lessons, hence the certificates.

Now for the last 4 weeks, he has gone backwards, he seems petrified to be swimming. We booked a private lesson with the tutor to give him his confidence back. It didn't work, we were told he screamed for the full 40 minutes, whilst swimming.

The Mrs and I have decided to take it in turns taking him swimming one evening a week after school in the hope of getting him more confident because we know he can do it, after all, 7 weeks ago he was doing it. He's going to miss out on his certificates this time because of the way he behaves in the lessons. It costs us £71 for ten half an hour lessons, it isn't about the money as we want him to be able to swim as I believe it is essential that he learns, but

Should we keep up with the lessons when he is clearly not enjoying them or progressing anymore because of how scared he seems to be? Is just making him do them more for us than him?

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10 comments:

  1. Before reading the post I had every intention of commenting 'depends on how much you paid for it 😂' here. However having read it is give it a serious answer. Let it go. There's o point putting him through stress. Don't firce the issue. Advise it's his choice but that it's a very important skill and you recommend he keeps it up.
    Don't draw a line in the sand. Advise that at any time he can decide to go back and that won't be an issue.

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    1. Haha thanks, i would have also though to put the same thing. Yeah i think were going to wait until hes ready. He can swim well enough now that we can take him with us to get his confidence back then if he wants to go back to lessons he can

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  2. Hmm I am a big believer in kids knowing their readiness. My youngest son wouldn't swim until he was 7 or 8 (didn't even really like the bath either). All of our others could swim much earlier, as they had grown up with a pool in Australia so it was a really hard thing to let him get to that point, but we did. He asked to learn before a holiday in Spain, had a blast in the pool while there, and came back with a real urge to continue his playful progess. It didn't take him very long to make his way through the levels once he started. When he got to light blue (is that 4 or 5?) he requested to stop again. By this stage he could swim though and had most of his strokes down pat. We let him stop. We parented him loads different to our other four, we have allowed him to know his boundaries/limits. Everything has come so much easier for allowing this. Toilet training, weaning, eating, swimming, reading. I don't know that it works like that for every child, but it did for him. He seems to want to feel the need to learn something for himself, if that makes sense?

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    1. Yeah that does make sense and seeing how much my boy seems to dislike it has made us think "we'll just wait until hes ready". I just domt understand the loving it one minute then being petrified the next, but i guess thats just kids. Im sure i was like it

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  3. I agree with what Daddy Poppins said. Don't force him to go if it is upsetting him so much, but do encourage him to try again when he feels more ready as it is a good skill to have. I had an incident as a child and almost drowned. It was a terrifying experience that resulted in me having a paralyzing fear of deep water. To this day I still don't know how to swim and now that I have kids of my own who are learning I wish I knew how to swim. My parents at first did try to convince me to go to lessons but I refused and after a while they gave up on trying to convince me. I have recently been seriously considering facing my fear and finally learning. It's never too late I suppose

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  4. I have found from experiance forcing just makes them to not want to do it so I would never force great post Thanks for linking to the #THAT FRIDAY LINKY come back next week please

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  5. forcing kids to do something that they don't like it's so unfair. I don't want to be forced to do something I hate so why I should do that to my kid? One day maybe he would say that he wants to swim. Some things need time
    #ThatFridayLinky

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  6. How did you go? Did he take to it again or did you decide to take a break?

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    1. We stopped him going, there was no point in making him upset every week. He goes to Karate now and really enjoys it which is great!

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  7. My two waited for 8 months to get into the local "Rainbows" group. One of them loved it but the other hated it to the point where she cried and was physically sick! We persevered for 3 weeks then on the 4th week I just took her home and she never went back. The other still goes and loves it.

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