I know there are super Mom's out there and perfect children, that is not the case in the DeVan household. Last season I didn't bring my kids to one regular season game, and it was the best thing I ever did.
When my children were babies I brought them to football games. They slept and stayed nicely in a baby carrier while I enjoyed some adult talk and football. When we were in the NFL they had childcare available during the games and you could get your child at any point. I would sometimes bring my son (one to 18 months old during season) out for the last bit of the game. He was also able to hang out with Dad before the game. Our first season back in Division 1 was a nightmare. My daughter was a few months old, and my son was two. Football games literally became the most exhausting part of the week and I began dreading going to them without help.
Our college used to have bounces houses (thank God they are gone) at the games. Do you think a two year old would rather bounce or watch football? Not to mention I had a breastfeeding one year old with me. When season two rolled around and I had a 3 and 1 year old I made the best decision for me, I got a babysitter for every game of the season and for every date night. It was the BEST thing I did for myself and for my husband and I. Not only was I able to actually have adult conversations with the ladies, I was able to watch the football game. The entire thing. I could actually tell you the final score of the game. A few times I even left my vehicle there and drove home with my hubby so I could hang with a few of the player's parents and have a beer or two. I also felt refreshed after getting home from a game. My husband and I could talk about the game. I was no longer exhausted from chasing children all game and feeling like a chicken with my head cut off. That time away at the game was a time for me, and I didn't expect to feel so recharged afterwards. There are people that will judge and say "well I want my kid to know football and see their Dad at work". Guess what, we see him at work all the time and go to practice ALL THE TIME. Plus I don't want my kids hating football, which I think can happen if everything is football and they have no say in coming or going. I will say I did ask my son before every game if he wanted to come, and of course he didn't. This year since he will be 4 I'm sure he will want to come because of his friends being there, and I totally understand that and will bring him. My daughter won't go to any games this year, she will be two and I just don't think it's fair to her to make her sit for a whole game.
So my advice to women who can afford to and want to, is get that babysitter. You don't even have to do it every game, but take the time every now and then to enjoy the game by yourself. You are not a bad Mom for not taking your kids to the game.
I am only speaking about my experiences with two young kids, obviously it will be different as my children grow. How do you manage your kids while at the game?