Bad Parenting-Marching Band Edition

Tonight was the start of our football season. In my world, that is a big deal. I am a devoted band mom and rarely miss a game. I love to see my daughter out on the field. I love to witness the progression that takes place as they move through the season perfecting their show. It is pretty darn awesome.

This year brought with it a new crop of marchers. I was surprised to find a familiar face in the new crop of kids, but an old friend’s son joined the ranks.

I guess I should back up a step or two. This friend is someone I knew when I was married. He was the best friend of my ex, my children’s father. I left years ago when I wanted away from drama, alcohol, and drugs. I walked out the door and left behind many of our mutual friends. I have run into a few from time to time and will be cordial, but that is about it.

Seeing this kid had me a little worried about what the season would hold. I really prefer not to hang out with my old friend any more than necessary, but hate to be rude as well. I like my distance from our past life and have worked hard to provide a good life for my kids. Unfortunately for my old friend and his kid, he never seemed to want to change and from what I can tell has put his own desires in front of being the parent his kid deserves. I prefer not to witness it.

Back to tonight, I really didn’t give it a lot of thought initially, but I did not see my old friend. I did not see any of his family which is surprising as the grandmother tends to be very involved. With the hustle and bustle of everything, I just assumed I had missed them somehow. It was not until after the game that my daughter said something about the situation.

My very intuitive fourteen year old noticed that something was wrong with her bandmate. She said he was crying and that she saw him cry on more than one occasion because his dad did not bother to show up for their show. She said that she did not like the boy’s dad and that he is a “terrible parent.”

My heart breaks for the boy. He deserves better than to be constantly disappointed by the only parent he has. I thought about speaking to the grandmother, but I doubt it would do any good. I almost messaged the dad, but I would probably make matters worse.

He doesn’t know me and, despite my charm and good graces, I doubt he would let me take him under my wing at 16 years of age. But, I want this boy to have some family present at the home games. My plan, I am going to message the dad and grandma prior to the game and let them know what is going on. I am going to ask if they are going. Not knowing will not be an excuse. Unfortunately, I cannot do much more than that.

Our next home game is next week. There is a tailgate beforehand. Here’s to hoping the kid has a much better Friday next week.


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