How fun are FIRST robotics competitions? Are they worth getting in trouble over?

I just joined my local FIRST robotics team this year and I’m having a slight issue. My parents don’t want me to go far away (which to them, 1-2 hours away is far) which is a problem since most of the actual competitions are pretty far away. Since they clearly don’t trust me enough to drive to competitions on my own, go with a friend, or the team coach/parent, looks like I’m going to have a few extra “swim meets” next year. Since both parents are super un-involved and have never gone to a single meet I can probably get away with this. However all it will take is one person my parents know seeing me there to get me in some serious ****.
Do you feel that the competitions were fun enough to where you would do some sneaking around to get them if you were in my position?

And to preemptively address a question i faced on another website: I feel 0 reluctance in lying to my parents on this. I have never given them a reason not to trust me, yet they’ve treated me like a 5 year old for the last 16 years… so if they do catch me I will have a big smile on my face :))

You’ve never given your parents a reason not to trust you? Your other threads on this site show several reasons why a parent might not trust you to go away on your own. Putting Grand Theft Auto on school computers, cursing at your guidance counselor, wondering about what the biggest/coolest thing other students have gotten away with, lying to your GC to get the classes you want, having no reluctance about lying to your parents, and your level of anger when you don’t get your way are sufficient reasons for a parent to not trust your maturity and judgment.

If this is your initial response when a woman doesn’t give you your way, maybe you should go speak to someone.

And you get to decide who deserves to be cursed at? Good luck having a boss in the future.

I mean anyone can decide to curse at anyone if they think they deserve it… that’s how communication works.


To answer the original question, why don’t you invite your parents to attend? One of my sons did FIRST Robotics and H and I went to the competition. It was a blast. As parents, we had so much fun seeing all of the different approaches the kids took with the same materials and instructions, watching the actual competitions was fascinating. I was so disappointed when my son switched to the chess team the next year because the tournaments were just not as much fun.

I don’t know about your other issues, but if you have a temper, you should work on curing it. And, cursing at your GC is not a great idea. I hated my last boss but never would I have cursed her to her face.

If it is a school sponsored event, it is unlikely they’d let students drive themselves to out of town competitions.

My dad said he would love to go until I told him the competitions last full weekends. He doesn’t like taking days off of work so getting him to take 3 off in a row would take a miracle. My mom has 0 interest whatsoever in this area.

@twoinanddone My friends all drove themselves last year. Also in hindsight trusting teenagers to make their own flights to Houston when the team did good probably wasn’t the best idea but a certain level of incompetency was involved.

My friend traveled to Houston with his team, together. They traveled to the city competition together as I saw some teams taking the light rail, all dressed the same, even though it was only 3 train stops away from their school.

But you have it all figured out.

Kids definitely sometimes drove themselves to FIRST competitions from our team. But here is what I know — you can’t be in the pit or on the field at a FIRST competition without a signed permission form from a parent. I know because I volunteer in Put Admin, and we administer that part of the competition. So you are going to have to tell them.

Why don’t you ask your FIRST coach to talk to them about it? I was a team mentor, and I’d have been happy to do that for a student. I’m sure your coach would. And there were usually several adults driving to team competitions. Your parents may be okay if you ride with one of them or a coach.

I told them that the coach could drive me since I knew he drove a few people last year. My parents said they don’t want to bother the coach with something like that. The problem is it feels like they’re making excuses as they go along. They did something similar a few times when my schools were having far away field trips. For some reason they can’t stand it when me or any of my brothers are far away from home… its the extremely annoying over protectiveness that is making this situation impossible to approach without lying.

So YOU should have the coach talk to them. I bet he can put them at ease (and do you have more than one coach, or additional team mentors?). It will be harder for your parents to say no if one of those adults talks to them and says that it is helpful to the team to have you there, and they can drive you. Don’t lie to your parents. Instead, enlist the help of the adults involved with your team. It sounds like you’ve had some challenges, but this is a good chance to take an honest and forthright approach to a problem instead of sneaking around.

Aside from the many, many other issues evident in this thread…

In order to attend a school sponsored event, particularly if you’re not taking school transportation, you’ll have to have your parents sign a permission slip. How exactly are you planning to get around this?

Closing thread for numerous ToS violations.