Approach other team parents
If you’re offended by somebody’s behavior, it’s likely that you’re not the only one. Call a team meeting about a particular parent’s behavior and discuss the situation with as many team parents as possible. Find out who else does not approve of the offender’s behavior. If a lot of team parents agree the behavior is unhealthy for the kids and how the team is being represented, approach the team coach and ask them to address the parent who is causing the distress.
If there is a team parent who happens to be friendly with the offender, perhaps they could have a less-confrontational discussion with the offender letting them in on how the other parents are feeling. If no one is willing to address the offender, then call a mandatory team meeting where guidelines will be established on parental behavior, and discuss what the consequences will be if the guidelines are violated. Make sure all parents are informed of this so no one can claim they didn’t know about these guidelines.
Contact a League Official
If an agreement cannot be worked out within the teams’ families, it may be time to contact a league official with the concerns. This is also a valid action if the offensive situation is created by another team’s parents or family. If there is a problem with an opposing team, contact their coach first, but if that doesn’t get desired results then a league official is the next appropriate step.
Issues Within a Family
If the situation only involves a parent being negative to their own child and not directing their issues toward other players, coaches or parents, a whole new set of problems arise. As much as people may want to step in and help the affected child of a negative parent, it’s really a family issue. It’s not anyone else’s place to get involved in someone else’s family dynamic. Talking to the offending parent’s spouse may be the only possible line of action in this situation, but be prepared to be told it’s not your business when it comes to someone else’s family.