A sad and heartwrenching evening for difficult child


New Member
I didn't know where to put this as it's not really a difficult child sort of issue, but in a sense it is. difficult child has spent the last two weeks in hockey try-outs. After the first set which was for AA, he was cut. One of the days I had decided not to give difficult child his extra pill and he had a hard time focusing, but in the end as a whole he was one of the better goalies, he got cut anyways. One of the coaches for a lower level came to him and said that the AA coach didn't make a good decision. Oh well, it happens, we move on to the A level. difficult child did not put a skate out of place, he was by far the best, out playing all goalies by leaps. This was not only our feeling but most parents and even the other goalies parents. He was being congratulated by others even before the end of this round of tryouts. He got cut. husband noticed that throughout many of the days the coach could and would not look at difficult child, he would look at all the other kids but difficult child.

difficult child's Tourettes is visable. It does not affect his play on the ice whatsoever, but when he gets off his head jerks and he makes facial grimaces and things with his eyes.

I never thought I'd ever see anything like this happen to difficult child. He is heartbroken. He knows he outplayed the others yet we cannot give him a reason for being cut. We will not tell him the real reason why. He is scared now that he will get cut from the final team, a team that the kids can barely skate, because it does not make sense to him.

It's not fair. Do people not see that these kids are punished enough just by having these disorders, why do they have to continually punish them more.

They chose two goalies, one who when scored on and the game was still going on was sitting on the ice mopping and the other goalie would skate around away from his net while the game was in play. difficult child waited in his net, stopped all but 4 shots in the four days they played, got up if they scored and was ready to play. Was first to everything and quite simply, kicked b-u-t-t. I wish I could say that it was because he's my kid I feel this way but others felt that way about him too.

It :censored2: and it's not fair.


I think I might get fouled for what I want to do to the coach. You have my thoughts. I love to watch hockey and it is a shame that your difficult child has been treated this way.



I am sorry. There are many ignorant people out there. They have no idea the grief they cause by their ignorance.


Active Member
I don't know hoe important this is socially - can you take this to a discrimination complaints mob? Or do you want to walk away from it?

difficult child is going to cop this sort of discrimination. It is going to happen. You could either fight this, or knuckle under. Or even challenge the selector to at least admit he was taking the Tourette's into account in his decisions.

If you fight this, you send a message to difficult child to not accept these decisions and to not let people discriminate against him. You also teach him to get angry at this sort of thing.

If you choose to not fight this, you need to be sure you're not teaching difficult child that discrimination is OK. At some level difficult child WILL know (or suspect) that the unfair decision was because of his Tourette's. Should he learn to just roll over and take it? But then, should he also learn to let go and move on?

I'm not telling you what to do - you have to assess the situation for yourself. To fight something like this can get dirty, if you are forcing a weak person to confront their own weaknesses. Such people get nasty when cornered, but they also can be like a balloon suddenly deflated.

Me - I would be thinking of at least confronting the coach - "We abide by your decision but we know you made it on the wrong basis, you need to grow up and learn about Tourette's." But that's me. Another possibility - is there another group difficult child could join? If he gets cut from the A team too, I would definitely be kicking rear ends.

We have a lot of soccer played in Australia and recently there was a girl who wanted to play (and she was darned good) who was told she couldn't pay because she was a girl - it was obvious that was their reason - they said they could let her play now but as she reached puberty she wouldn't be able to play, because there are no girls in the older teams. Her parents fought the decision and won. The boys in the existing team were at first very resentful, until they played with her and found she really deserved to be there, they valued the added edge her presence gave the team.

It's difficult to live with discrimination. I've had to endure it all my working life, and had to find creative ways to cope. Directly kicking rear ends was not always the way to go - it antagonised people and made it even harder to work there - but I found other ways and won out. And a couple of times I walked away, I just didn't care enough to either fight it, or insist on my rights.

But if you care - if difficult child cares - it might be worth at least making a point. The payoff would be next season. Unless the guy is even more of a horse's rear (and shortsighted fool) than he already seems.



Well-Known Member
Are there any other leagues? Unfortunately, difficult child is going to have to get accustomed to such discrimination. Not accept it, but realize it is out there. We all know the great things our kids can do if only given the chance. {{{Hugs}}} to you and your aching heart.


trying to survive....

I am so sorry for you and for difficult child. My heart breaks for the two of you. This clearly sounds like discrimination. I would speak to the coach and discuss your concerns. I would give him a chance to explain and see if he comes up with any clear reasons as to why he was cut. Maybe based on this conversation, he could change him mind.....Does the coach know about his issues? Does he know about tourettes? Any chance you could get the parents who watched your child involved in the situation and support you in helping to get your child on this team? Maybe they could help as well. I would contact the Tourette Syndrome Association and ask their advice. There are national chapters and local chapters. I've recently had contact with them and they seemed to be able to provide strong advocacy support as well as come into schools and/or organizations to provide training. With the support of the Tourette Syndrome Association, I would contact the hockey team organization and put in a formal complaint...

In the meantime, I would contact a different hockey organization and see if they are still having tryouts. I bet there are other teams in the area.

This is totally unfair....Sending great big hugs -- I wish I could do more !!


Roll With It
hugs to you and difficult child. This stinks. Whatever your decision ends up being, phooey and worse on this coach.



New Member
I like the idea of mildly confronting the coach. I'm not sure I myself could be mild, but maybe you're better at this than me. What about finding a short article about tourettes and printing it and giving it to the guy? Or an article about discrimination and tourettes, even better.

My heart hearts for you and for difficult child. If he deserves to be on the team, than this JA should have put him on the team. I'd be fuming, but I would also probably handle it all wrong. I'm known to blow up just a tad bit when it comes to my kids.


Well-Known Member
Oh, Christine, that is so sad.
I always cut people way to much slack and can see both sides, so this may not help ...
On one hand, anyone can be cut. Coaches can and do play favorites. Do you really want difficult child on a team where he's got an uphill battle all the way and a coach who is totally clueless?
on the other hand, maybe he was cut specifically because of the Tourette's, and maybe you should attempt to educate the coach. Especially since your son held his own during tryouts.
First, I would consider if there is another team for him to play on, because he seems to really like hockey. (I assume that the significance of A, AA etc. is similar to baseball, and that your son could still play, although it would not be at an elevated level.) My goal in life is always along the lines of, "What's the point? To play the game. What do we have to do to get there?" Then I take the most expedient route.
If there is no other team, then you may want to give the Tourette's article to the coach to educate him, and ask him exactly what your son could have done differently, such as checking, etc., because your son likes hockey and wants to improve. If the coach says, "Well, I had to cut somewhere," then I'd club him with-the stick.
Okay. LOL. That's not what I'd do.
I'm not sure I could be calm and logical about it. But you are at least right to question it.


Spork Queen
Personally, I would write a letter to the coach explaining your son and your feelings. I wouldn't be able to do it in person as I'd probably explode and make matters worse.

I've been an educator for 22 years, and still find equally qualified teachers who have no clue as to disorders. Once they are educated, they are much more willing (hopefully) to see beyond the disorder.

It sounds as this is your son's thing that gets him focused and gives him a sense of validation. To deny that...even though it doesn't affect his ability in the sport, is nearly criminal.



Active Member
Aw Christine that :censored2:. We have had our issues with hockey tryouts here too. Tigger no longer plays because of the intolerance of the parents on his 6-year old team. Kanga has been cut several years (including this one) for reasons other than on ice ability (she's a girl, etc)

I'm assuming you're districted and can't go elsewhere?? What we did for Kanga her first year of pee wee was let her play on the bottom team and supplemented her development with semi-private goalie lessons. Don't know which part of Ontario you are in but http://www.futurepro.com does a great job.

It is so hard to help them deal with a cut that they know is patently unfair. They lose a little bit of faith in the adult world. It breaks my heart.


New Member
Thanks for all the support. difficult child is still not coping well with it. He went to the first B tryout today and he was so bored. These kids can hardly skate and very few actually got the puck to the net and with being a goalie, that's really frustrating.

husband and I talked and have decided to just plug along. Our concern is that if we speak up he will be even more blacklisted and we don't want that for him. JJJ - you suggested exactly what husband and I were thinking and that is we will supplement him with goalie lessons elsewhere and when he kicks everyone's patootie even more so than now, people will talk.

difficult child was met with a lot of suprised faces when he entered the dressing room. Most could not understand why he was there and there was a lot of talk about the "way" the tryouts and cuts have been made. Many came to us and told us how they didn't understand why he wasn't in AA but for him to not even make A was ridiculous. Others were more politically correct in saying that at least they'll never lose a game as long as difficult child is in the net.

We will take it day by day and see what happens. I want difficult child to learn to be the better person and I don't want him aware that he was judged unfairly because of his disorders. I don't want him to hate himself and I think that would happen if he knew. Right now he just doesn't like or understand the coaches.

Abbey - you nailed it with this sentence "It sounds as this is your son's thing that gets him focused and gives him a sense of validation. To deny that...even though it doesn't affect his ability in the sport, is nearly criminal." It is truly how I feel. It is one of the few things he excels in, most of his confidence comes from being one of the best goalies in our area, and they are ripping his heart out with this.

I am afraid for what will happen to him at the next cut.

Hound dog

Nana's are Beautiful

I'm so sorry. This really stinks for difficult child.

I think I'd have to have a talk with some people in the league about discrimination and what can happen to those who practice it. I'd have a hard time letting it go when it was so blatant.

If it were me, I'd arm myself with info and start knocking on doors.



Active Member
Hi, Christine,

I'm so sorry for your difficult child. I wonder if it might be a good idea to catch the coach on the side. He might not even know that he was discriminating against your son. (a longshot, I know). But by handling it rationally, with concern, and any legal discrimination info. that you can have on hand, you could be:

1. showing difficult child the REAL way to handle discrimination
2. saving this guys reputation/career
3. striking a blow for the other talented kids who aren't the "picture-perfect" players that this guy wants to handle

By addressing it rationally and asking the question, the least that can happen is you'll embarass the heck out of the clown and the most that could happen is another try-out.

I just worry that so many of us don't say anything to protect our kids (God knows I used to!), when ultimately we're missing an opportunity to teach them something.

No offense intended!!!

Good luck with whatever you decide!



call 911........call 911
I have read your post and the other posts. It has taken me days to get back to this because I felt an overwhelming sense of unfairness and misunderstanding. I guess I had flashbacks of standing in the wings and watching my difficult child be picked over time and time again. Part of ME wanted to ream everyone out, and the other half said "His behaviors, his behaviors - who would want to deal?" In many cases my son had choices. With Tourettes, your choices are more limited FOR you.

Maybe someone has suggested this and I didn't see it....but how about having your SON go to the coach, ask for some private one on one and have your SON explain himself, Tourettes, and how he feels. Have your son ask the coach WHY he got cut. Sometimes that goes a lot longer with school administrators and coaches.

I wish I had more wise healing words to say. Goodness knows when you hurt one of us, it's like you hurt us all. I'm really truly sorry, fingers crossed for the matter.



Former desparate mom
Sorry, I know what I am about to say will not sit well with your decision.
This is why there is a law against discrimination. I would shove the law under their noses. If your son can do the job it is not your son's or your problem with the coaches comfort level. He is entitled to fair treatment under the law. Excuse me while I snort "moron" under my breath at such idiocy in regards to kids. Isn't your son entitled to feel good about a sport he loves. The N/T parents wouldn't tolerate having their child made to feel less than adequate if they had skiills.

I would demand to know the reason for difficult child being cut. He out performs and he is appropriate. Heck, they should even make reasonable accomodations for his disability.

The law says if you can perform the job they have no right to discriminate based on ignorance.

I would have to put my warrior hat on and light a bit of a fire under the butts of the ignorant. :warrior:

in my humble opinion!!!of course.