I contemplated blogging about this but then I remembered one of the main reasons Nikki and I created this blog - to create a network for moms who support each other and, most importantly, support our children.
I’m sharing this, not because I’m looking for sympathy, but simply to show people how ugly this basketball world can get. Social media adds a major negative aspect to our world by being an outlet for the haters.
For years, my son, Kyree, has experienced hate on the worst levels, simply because of his love and drive for the game. I’ve learned that if people can’t control your narrative or claim a piece of your success, they sadly will resort to devilish ways. We’ve had program directors and self-called “gate keepers” threaten to tarnish his career before it even started. We've experienced camp directors with their politics and reporters releasing negative stories after we’ve refused interviews. We’ve been through it all - mothers of his own teammates yelling and cursing at my son on the court. Some went so far as posing as their sons on social media to write negative things. Yes, this has all happened, and sadly, there are more stories.
Gratefully, we have thick skin and have learned to let the hate and negativity roll off our backs because we know those things come from insecurities and fear of lack of control. One occurring thing that continues to happen that really bothers me are the fake news stories that have been created like wishing death upon my child. At least twice a year, for the past three years, someone has created news stories about Kyree dying in a car accident or committing suicide. When these stories post, we are immediately swamped with urgent calls from family members and friends, shocked and frightened because they saw the post and thought the worst. I’ve talked to my son about his social media activity and maybe scaling it back because what he’s posting is obviously making people feel some kind of way. On the other hand, shouldn’t he be able to share his accomplishments since he’s worked so hard for them?
In this day and age, our children must learn to deal with the opinions brought directly to them through social media. One positive thing that comes out of all this negativity is the support of my fellow basketball mom friends. They are always on call when it happens, sending love and prayers for me and my son, and I’m extremely thankful for that!
I’ve realized that the enemy tries to attack those that are deemed successful, gifted, and blessed. These kids are under attack daily for simply doing what they love and trying to achieve their goals. The end goal is to see our children succeed, get college scholarships, travel the world, and ultimately play the game they love. I want success for your child just as much as I want it for my own. In this world filled with forces of jealousy, envy, and bigotry, my hope is that everyone reading this will become a person that supports all children and most importantly, prays for their physical and mental safety.