For Parents How to delicately handle my daughter's goal

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Yes bookworm - my dd really, really wants to do college gymnastics - what should we know?

I guess the bottom line on D1 college gymnastics is that they own your kid and they are basically an employee of whatever school they are at, and nastiness is not uncommon in this whole journey.

I watch other kids go away to school with far less worries about how they look, how they will perform, how they will fit in etc and I wonder if I did my daughter a disservice by encouraging her desire to do this ...should I have just said "sweetie, your body has been through enough, just go to college and enjoy" ....I think most of the angst is mine as I watch all that happens but she takes it all in stride and loves what she is doing ...I guess it's a parent's guilt weighing in on me...
Dd is 7 and new L3. She thinks she's going to the Olympics as well. I just tell her that whatever her goals are, if she is willing to put in the time and hard work, then we (DH and I) are willing to put in the money and time as well.

Will she make it? Well she is a very determined little girl but I don't see an elite track in her future. Actually had to chill my dad out this summer. He started in on how she would be in the Olympics one day (in front of her). I talked to him later about putting to much pressure on her and gave him a little gymnastic reality. However, I would never say anything along the same lines to DD. kids grow up fast enough as it is, let them dream as long as possible.
I agree with everyone who says let her dream. Mine is dreaming of the big O and I just say what a neat experience that would be and how much luck and hard work is involved. She wants to be elite and I've looked into it. It really comes down to our situation, both geographically and financially. She is going to have to show me she wants it more than she is showing me now. I think a much more realistic, and yet still hard to reach, goal is college.

But don't squash her dreams. Life will do that to her enough.
Thank you all for your advise. I never want to crush her dreams, and I do plan to support her dreams whatever they are. It's just really hard knowing in my heart that it will be a huge challenge for her to overcome to realize her dreams.

As far as college goes, I think college sports can be a great thing. They help with getting the right classes, help with homework and career planning. It also gives them an opportunity to meet lots of other kids with similar goals and interests and keeps them busy, and hopefully out of trouble. Yes, I know colleges can make a lot of money off their athlete, but, if you and your student make smart choices, it can be a positive experience. I was a college athlete, and had a wonderful experience.
Tell her with any goal, she's going to have to work really, really hard to achieve it. I wouldn't squelch her dreams, though. Let her dream and believe. There are too many negative, awful realities in the world, and her understanding of that will come with age. Kids need dreams. Just cheer her on and love her.
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