so true!

This Dad Begs Parents To Just Embrace Their “Good, Weird” Theater Kid

"It's so healthy for them. They're so loved."

A dad shares how great it is when kids find theater.
Dustin Nickerson / TikTok

Podcaster and dad Dustin Nickerson had a message for all those parents who might feel a little hesitant about their kid going all-in on theater: let go and let it happen. He understands that not every parent “gets” theater and might prefer their kid to kick a ball or shoot a ball or do something with balls, but he promises that there is something so wholesome about the theater community.

“Parents, embrace your theater kid,” Dustin Nickerson said on his Don’t Make Me Come Back There podcast.

“If you're not a theater person, I know you're scared. You see this world and you're like, ‘I don't understand it. I don't know. Is it weird?’ Yes.”

He continues, “It's so wholesome. They have like a great community. They have nice volunteers. They all get close. They all cry at the end. It's like youth group with a play.”

He also warns parents that there are some slightly annoying aspects of raising a theater kid like the potential ruining of your favorite musical.

“Are you going to hate the songs of Annie? Yes. You're going to want to stab a little redhead. Yes. For three months,” he jokes.

“It's so good for that kid. It's so healthy for them. They're so loved. They're learning harmonies. They're learning choreography. Yes. They're dancing. They're learning confidence. They're learning to speak on stage. They're memorizing stuff. We have a kid with ADHD that's memorizing stuff. This is not easy to do. Theater. It's a good weird.”

After his post gained traction, several TikTok users shared their own experiences with theater growing up.

“As a fellow adhd theatre kid, we are extremely good at memorizing things… maybe not anything important, but I can still lay down a monologue from 20 years ago,” one user said.

Another said, Wish my parents would have cheered for me during curtain call the same way they cheered for brother's baseball.”

“My parents did more for me saying yes to doing theatre as a kid than they could ever have imagined,” one TikTok user wrote.

“As a high school theatre teacher finishing up my 26th year, all of this is TRUE!” one teacher said.

Parents for theater kids also weighed in on Dickerson’s take on theater kids, agreeing that there is something special about kids who grow up doing theater.

“All of my kids are theater kids. I love their friend groups SO MUCH. Theater kids are the best kinds of kids,” one mom wrote.

“Absolutely, my ADHD kid found her people. She counts down to the next show,” one mom wrote.

“it's a lot of work on my end but I wouldn't change it for the world watching my child blossom into an amazing human and have a whole world of support,” another wrote.

Other users added that other behind-the-scenes roles in the theater community also help kids thrive.

“Technical theatre too! Your kid can learn design, basic electricity, woodworking, collaboration, troubleshooting, organization, etc.,” one user said.

Another echoed, “My kid is a crew kid. She’ll never audition, but man does she rock a spotlight. I go to every production. 🥰”

During the early years of parenting, most of us try to get our kids involved as much as possible, letting our kids dip their toes in sports, art, music, etc. to see what fits them and what they really take to. Don’t leave theater off that list!