Phil Mickelson skips US Open to attend daughter’s graduation

By Annmarie Toler | Posted 6/16/2017

One thing that parents, coaches, and professional athletes share in common: the struggle of juggling work and family.

Scheduling conflicts are the "norm," missing a family event for a work event seems more common than ever. But when is it OK to say no to your sport and yes to a life event?

Golfer Phil Mickelson came face to face with this issue this week.

Mickelson's oldest daughter, Amanda, graduated from high school on June 15 in California, the same day that the U.S. Open's first round took place at Erin Hills in Wisconsin.

Months of consideration went into Mickelson's decision but he ultimately chose to attend Amanda's graduation after looking at the big picture.

“As I look back on life, this is a moment I’ll always cherish and be glad I was present,” Mickelson told The New York Times.

The US Open just so happens to be the only major championship Michelson has not won, a victory he needs to become just the sixth man to join the elite club of winning a career Grand Slam.

When it comes to balancing work and family, there is no easy equation or playbook; no foolproof answer.

It comes down to priorities and making difficult decisions. Sometimes that means family takes a backseat—but other times, like in Mickelson's case, family simply comes first.

Mickelson is rigorous trainer and preparer but even he knows when it is time to take a step back and focus on what really matters.

There will be other golf events in the future, but his daughter only graduates high school once.