Ballroom Dance > Negative comments from family members who don't dance

Discussion in 'Ballroom Dance' started by tanya_the_dancer, Apr 11, 2009.

  1. tanya_the_dancer

    tanya_the_dancer Well-Known Member

    OK, just wondering if anyone else had this happen.

    Some of my family members occasionally make negative comments about my dancing and/or tell me what to do to make it better (and the advice is completely off the mark).

    I have couple of examples in mind, and I'll post later because I feel like venting, but I need to run to supermarket now.
  2. etp777

    etp777 Active Member

    Tanya, I'm spoiled in that my immediate familly is extremely supportive, even the sister who doesn't dance (and other sister and parents have all been involved in ballroom dancing even longer than I have). For previous discussion of this topic though, check out this thread. Some good posts from both sides of the fence.
  3. latingal

    latingal Moderator Staff Member

    tanya, it's nice that your family takes an interest in your dancing, perhaps it's just a bit off the mark. Until somebody actually tries to dance, it's hard to actually understand just how hard it is. Especially with dance styles that have a social history, ie. haven't heard anybody kibitz on how to improve somebody's ballet without some knowledge or experience themselves.

    Perhaps the "offending" family members might want to join you in a class or two? *grin*
  4. Becca

    Becca Active Member

    My mother was always making negative comments about my dancing. One of the main reasons I now have absolutely nothing to do with her.
  5. barrefly

    barrefly New Member

    Recently, I set my daughter up with a tryout with an instructor that "I thought" was a good dancer. My daughter went along, but immediatly could tell he wasn't the dancer for her. She shut down and gave me dirty looks as if "How could you set me up with this guy". He could also sense it immediatly and was trying to give her an out,...but I pushed them to continue. She continued to shut down. I was getting a bit mad and asked her "what's the problem"? She said "I will talk to you later". I then, after about 20 min. thanked the guy for coming and he left. Then I talked to her about it, and she quickly peeled off about 10 things the guy was doing wrong. Technical things that I did not have a clue about. Things that apparently, only an advanced dancer would know. I not only put my daughter in an uncomfortable situation, I put the guy in one as well.

    I felt terrible afterwards, but now have a new found respect for my daughter and her dance ablilities.

    Be firm with them before they make your life miserable, like I have with my daughter. They will get over it. Afterall, you are not a 10 yr. old.
  6. _malakawa_

    _malakawa_ New Member

    well my mother used to comment and compare my dancing with some other dancers.

    i just tell her that i am going to work more on some things to be better. .

    but my friend used to make comments like, you are a dancer, it is easy how to dance. but when i show them to do something which i know that they can't (like basic step with technique) than they just shut up. ;)
  7. tanya_the_dancer

    tanya_the_dancer Well-Known Member

    I only have two offending family members really.

    My mom occasionally makes remarks about my arm styling (that I should make it more relaxed) or that my outfits show too much skin. She has briefly taken ballet as a child, probably 50 years ago, and won't try dancing using my father as an excuse.

    My husband, on other hand, dances some. We used to dance together, but stopped a few years ago because we couldn't get along or find common goals (I wanted to compete and focus on technique, he wanted to do more different patterns). Anyway, sometimes we have our lessons at the same time, and it so happened that I was working on something new on mine (some smooth gold, which involved different kicks and some no-contact work), I am sure it looked raw, but it couldn't have looked as bad as he said it did. He made some comments about how bad it looked. I told him it was the first time I ever did that and it's going to get better once I practice it more, he told me it still looked bad and why do I even bother. He shut up when I suggested he tries what I just did, but I am still annoyed.

    Thanks for reading my vent. I feel better.
  8. etp777

    etp777 Active Member

    That's what we're here for Tanya, among other things. :)

    Luckily, parents and sister are at another studio that I only go to for parties and the occasional class, so they never see me in lessons while I'm trying to master something new. Only see me at comps or during the parties/socials, where I'm only dancing stuff that is ready.
  9. Albanaich

    Albanaich New Member

    I'm in the unusual situation of having a wife and female offspring who think my dancing is embarrasing. . . . . .the only member of my family who is in any way supportive is my son.

    Fortunately I spend a lot of time away from home (which was why I started dancing in the first place) so its not a major issue.
  10. I have to say, that sometimes parents "criticize" because they care!!
    When I was in youth dancing, my parents always found something to pin point. And I used to get so frustrated/annoyed..

    Now, when I am pro, the only thing my mom ever criticizes is my facial and I think its cute....and I actually don't mind now if they do, cause at the end of the day, its how they show that they CARE..
  11. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    even though I never offer unsolicited advice, when I recieve it I try to evaluate it for it's merits regardless of the dance skill of the husband always said my rhythm looked too smooth...he was right...when someone bothers to give input, however hard it is to hear, it is always wise to consider it
  12. Albanaich

    Albanaich New Member

    Tanya - your post brings up something that I find interesting.

    Why do so many guys focus on the patterns and mechanics and not the techique.

    I want to do stuff like flex my knee and lower leg to the full range while all the guy's I know want to learn pattern number 233.

    It's like those slow, obese guys who are amazing leads, but can hardly lift a foot from the floor.
  13. j_alexandra

    j_alexandra Well-Known Member

    Well, there's input and there's input. Some people just have to sabotage -- they know exactly where my sensitive spots are, and hit them on purpose, and yes, there are people that cruel, and sometimes they're related to me. That input is given simply to hurt, and it has no value.

    Some family members are in awe of the fact that I'm doing this at all, and know nothing about dancing, but yes, they will say something that points out that my tango is mushy, f'rinstance. And they're right, and I value that input.

    But the husband who sabotages the whole thing, as in "Why are you wasting your time?" A special level in hell for him.
  14. Terpsichorean Clod

    Terpsichorean Clod Moderator

    I think your situation is a bit unusual in that you have relatives who have danced at some point in time, unlike most people with relatives who have never danced at all. Perhaps they might be a bit envious. They look at you and see how far you have come in your dancing. And then they look at themselves and can only mourn what might have been, had they been able to stick with their dancing. So when they find something in your dancing they feel they can criticize, they feel a little better about themselves, that they're better than you in some respect, that their own dancing is quite so bad after all (I've been in your relatives' shoes and acted similarly :oops: ). If so, maybe you could try to help them feel better about their dancing. You could invite them to take a belly dancing class or something with you, where you can support each other as fellow beginners. You might look for some detail (anything, even if small, even if you have to look really, really hard ;)) of their dancing to compliment: "I've always had trouble with XXXX, and I really like the way you do/did it!"

    I'm glad you feel better, tanya. :hug:
  15. Becca

    Becca Active Member

    Totally. When you care so much about something, and have your emotions wrapped so deeply into it, then it hurts like mad. It's very hard.
  16. newbie

    newbie Well-Known Member

    So, in this case she is the dancer and you are the incompetent family.
  17. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    i guess to my mind...if the issue is that serious and he is seriously that unsupportive, then the issue really isn't about dancing
  18. samina

    samina Well-Known Member

    Grrr....sorry to hear that.

    I remember one guy in my community (not family), used to bump into him at a local watering hole and he'd put down my ballroom dancing similarly. "What are you going to *do* with it... go on TV & compete?" <dripping with sarcasm>

    Knowing he's an avid golfer, I just asked him what he's going to do with it... "Go on TV & compete???"
  19. NonieS

    NonieS Well-Known Member

    my family members have never been dancers so they have never tried to criticize my dancing... my parents did once tell me that the makeup I wore for Latin was "scary".... but that is rather the point in Latin makeup lol so I took it as a compliment!!

    My parents are, however, very wary of my professional aspirations and have always felt that I put too much focus and attention towards dancing and not on more "important" things. I think we have finally reached the point, however, where I have beaten them into submission, so to speak lol.. They can somewhat accept that dance is what I love, am passionate about, and above all, what keeps me sane and happy. I think they still like to worry that I am embarking on a futile course of action by trying to become a dancer.... but I just tell them that's why I am getting my Bachelor's degree!!
  20. j_alexandra

    j_alexandra Well-Known Member

    Um, yeah. Is it ever really about dancing, even if it's the parents who are making the comments? Or the brother/sister, or kids, or whoever? It's seldom about dancing. Usually about other stuff.

    Which reminds me: it's time to go get ready to go to a social. And devil take the hindmost.

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