Arianne Brown: Don’t define your family by the sport your children play

Arianne Brown

Arianne Brown’s five sons play around with a soccer ball.

The year was 2008 and our oldest son, Anderson, had just turned 4 years old making him old enough to sign up for recreational soccer. Little did we know that this small act on the part of new parents would start a tradition that would deem the Browns a “soccer family,” particularly as it pertained to our boys.

Following the example of Anderson, our second son, Ace, began kicking the ball around and expressing a desire to play like his older brother, followed by our next son, Aussie. For the past nine years, our lifestyle has consisted of watching boys play soccer on a weekly and even daily basis on each of their respective club teams.

And as I look at our younger two boys and the way they kick around the ball, I am confident that our years of sitting behind white, painted side lines are only going to be extended.

Recently, however, one of my sons has expressed a desire to quit or at least take a break from our “family” sport. He is every bit as athletic as his brothers but has not mastered the skills as quickly. He has also found that other sports and extracurricular activities like being in the school play are more intriguing.

Unfortunately, when he has mentioned this to his brothers he has been met with pressure to continue in the…

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