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Scouting (Boys) Are you a den or troop leader, or an involved parent? Looking for help with meetings, crafts, ideas for outings? Ask your questions here!

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Old 02-18-2004, 03:11 PM
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Scout losing interest in Scouting

What do you do when your son starts to lose interest in scouting?

My 12 year old son has stopped wanting to go on camping trips (he loved them), doesn't want to go to summer camp (he had a blast) and today asked to skip tonight's meeting because he was in the middle of writing a story for English and he wanted to finish it even though it's not due yet.

He SAYS nothing happened....

I know that part of it is that Daddy is less involved now (and less likely to go on these trips) since he started to go to school full time in addition to his full time job. Maybe he just did it to have "Dad time"?

I am not going to force him to go on trips, and he hasn't mentioned quitting, but I don't know where this might be going. It looks like it could be the beginning of the end....
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Old 02-20-2004, 09:38 PM
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barbz how old is your son?... I know you told this to me once and sorry for fogetting
depending on his age.... give him so room..... let him miss a few meetings.... if he is in scouting due to his dad only.... then he going to be coming out sooner or later. but if he is young enough he may get back into it later.
boys will go thru this phrase.... it doesn't help us mom when they do for we want them to be in scouts. Then we got to check out is it us that wants him there or is it the son that wants in scouting.

Have you ever thought about volunteeing.... you know woman can.... for I was very active in scouting.... so was craftyldy.....

well do hope this works it self out.
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Old 03-20-2004, 04:37 AM
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Hi Barbszy,

My daughter is 11 and a long time Girl Scout. So far she is still loving it, but there have been times when she didn't and those usually can be traced to how active and committed the leader is. I have volunteered and been a co-leader for her troop many times, but there have been times when I couldn't and some of her leaders had left a lot to be desired and weren't interested in scouting for the right reasons (I guess volunteering looks good on a resume). Attend a couple meetings and see for yourself how the boys react to the leader, or volunteer to help at a meeting or two. My other comment is that now that your son is 12, he's almost a teenager with more peer pressure starting and maybe the other kids at school have been teasing him about being a Boy Scout (WE see this as a GREAT thing, but some kids will tease about anything and a Boy Scout can been picked out as being a "Goody-Goody") . I know even though my daughter still loves being a Girl Scout, she will not wear her uniform to school anymore because of that reason.

Good luck to both of you!
Wendi67
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Old 03-20-2004, 05:01 AM
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My son is 13 and he was going to quit, however, he switched troops and is now feeling better. Seems the other troop was very big and he felt kind of lost. The new one is smaller and he seems to like that better
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Old 03-20-2004, 08:51 AM
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Have you asked the leader if anything has changed?

Both of my sons lost interest in scouting last year. They didn't want to go to any of the events my 9 year old cried and cried when I would take him to his weekly meeting. I continually asked him what was wrong and he kept saying nothing. I asked the leader about it and she said she was worried about him because his attitude had changed and he was now a disiplinary problem during the meetings. She said she believed it stemmed from the parents. He was never made to go to another meeting. I know our situation is completely different, but I felt so bad for making them go to the meetings when IMO they were treated differently than the other kids (due to small town politics). They had their opinion and I guess I should have respected that a little more than I did, but it was disturbing to see that they all of a sudden hated scouts when before they loved it.

I hope everything works out for the best with you and your son.
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Old 03-20-2004, 10:02 AM
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IMO, if my son requested to drop out of an activity, I can't see why I should insist he continue. In the past recent years, Scouting has changed. There are other activities that would probably suit him better. I wouldn't force it on him.

I would also make sure, that no matter HOW BUSY your husband is, his first priority is to wife and children. Your son is at an age where he needs to spend more time with your husband. I'm sure that in a weeks' worth of hours, he can spare 2 hours on the weekend to do something with him exclusively.

Age 12 is really a transition year ....his hormones are starting to rage, he is questioning things and he needs his father now more than ever. It's a hard time for a boy. If he doesn't spend the needed time with his son now, your son will find a substitute ...and usually when they do that, it leads to no good.
There is no organization that can substitute for a parent's time spent with a child.
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Old 03-20-2004, 10:41 AM
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Actually my DH has been taking DS to Scouts on their weeknight meetings. It was his thing to do with Dad. But DH does not have a full weekend each month to go camping, and that was the problem. DS does not like to camp without his Dad. He did a couple of times, and I think he was a little scared, & embarrassed about that, and one of the leaders tends to be more "gruff" than necessary

Now DS won't go to Scouts at all, with or without Dad....because they will be planning a camping trip, he says. We have not forced him to go to any meeting he didn't want to attend except for the one where DH was giving a presentation Otherwise he hasn't been there. We ask if he wants to go, he says no, we say OK, it's your choice.

He has been offered the option of switching to another troop where he knows some kids and the leaders. He's thinking about it. I suggested he attend a couple of meetings just to try it out.
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Old 03-20-2004, 07:14 PM
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One of the reasons I like scouts is because I am a single divorced mom. Although he does see his dad, it is not every other weekend, but a few times a month and they never do anything together. Ex is remarried and has 2 boys (hers) ages 15 & 16. My son is 13 and daughter is 10. They like to see their dad, but they are bored over there. Scouts gives him a chance to be out with "the guys".
You may want to check the scouting rules. Some troops require kids under a certain age to have a parent go on the camping trips. It was kind of rough then since my ex would never go. I talked to the leader and they waived that requirement and he was able to go with a friend's parent. Now that he is older, he can go without the parent.
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Old 03-21-2004, 05:48 AM
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SCOUT LOSING INTEREST IN SCOUTING

Here is my opinion. Let him. He will find something else to interest him. Or ask him if there is something out there better then scouting. Like a sport or another hobby or whatever. Mine last December gave up swimming for ice skating full time. Out of the blue she said she didn't want to swim FT and when I asked her what else she wanted to do, she said she wanted to do FT ice skating. 4 years of both she decided to do recreational swimming and ice skating as her interest hobby. She made the choice and I support her decision. As a family you need to support your childrens decisions to drop a hobby or sport because it either no longer interest them or no longer is interesting to the family. If the family is no longer interested? Then the child will do the same. So, I would have a family pow wow and find out if dad IS no longer interested in scouting and if this is the case, then find something you as a whole family can do together. If he joined because dad thought it would be a fun thing to do a father and son and father isn't all that hot for it? Most often it is mothers who thought that father and son should go for it. I got ours invovled in ice skating because I enjoy the sport. If she didn't want to do it? Then I say don't sweat the small stuff and find something else. In my opinion? I don't really care for scouting and think it should disban and go away. IMO. There are better hobbies out there that can better suit a family and individuals. Good luck with your decision. I hope its one you and your son can live with.
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Old 03-21-2004, 06:09 AM
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WHA-Disbanned??

I have NO idea why someone would suggest that Scouting be "disbanned"?? They have either had a bad personal experience or you just don't know what the organization is trying to teach young people. Are MORAL, VALUES, SENSE OF COMMUNITY, TEAMWORK, PRIDE IN ONESELF, PATRIOTISM, CITIZENSHIP, and a little HARD WORK so wrong??? I think not! We could all use a lot more of these in our lives, not LESS!

You can't please everyone all the time, but the Scouting Organization has been around for over 100 years and was founded on solid principles and values that I try to live by and teach my children. I have an 11 year daughter who is finishing her 6th year as a Girl Scout, and a 3 year old son and if he's interested in a couple years he will be starting Cub Scouts.

Thank you Lord Baden Powell!
And thanks to Juliette Gordon-Low from the Girl Scout in ME!

Wendi67

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