HomeHealth & BehaviorBullying

From Our Readers: Dealing With Mean Girls

Readers share their ideas for dealing with mean girls.

By GreatSchools Staff

Thanks to our many readers who shared their ideas for helping girls cope when they are the target of mean girls and for providing suggestions for getting their school on board to foster a more supportive environment.

Communicate With Your Children and Stay Involved

Stand up to the mean girls.

A mom of a middle-school-aged daughter writes: "My daughter is 13 years old and has had her feelings hurt many times, because of 'mean girls.' She is very pretty and talented, is an honor student and is friendly to everyone. However, there is a group of girls that fall into the 'mean girls' category, just like the movie. According to my daughter, 'They run the school.'

"I explained to her that the 'mean girls' feel their status is threatened by pretty, smart, talented people and they are acting out of fear, jealousy and insecurity. I also explained to her that those girls only have the 'power' that is given to them.

"That talk seemed to work and she has learned to stand up to them, and to not let their personal insecurities hurt her. Another characteristic of 'mean girls' is they control other people by manipulation. For example, smiling in someone's face and then stabbing them in the back. The best way to deal with that is exposure. For example, when one of them said they liked another girl's top and then made a gagging gesture when the girl turned her back, my daughter asked her in front of an entire group of people why she was making a gagging gesture. Lastly, I explained to her that this is middle school, that the relationships she makes later in life will be the important ones, and not to worry herself with people that don't matter. I know this sounds harsh, but I feel the best way to approach issues is with the truth, no sugar coating."

Parents need to be involved in their children's lives.

One mother in Virginia puts the blame on the parents of mean girls: "I made the mistake of contacting the mother of a mean girl -- who simply hung up on me. I quickly realized that 'Queen Bee' girls are usually the daughters of 'Queen Bee' mothers.

"I recommend the book, Queen Bees and Wannabees, by Rosalind Wiseman. For my daughter, it was very helpful to understand the hierarchies within a clique and the roles the members play. Seeing the situation with that objectivity made the 'meanness' seem less personal to her. She recognized how the mean girls at her school were using power plays and emotional games that she didn't want to feed into."

Parents should share what they've learned about life.

A Massachusetts guidance counselor and mother encourages preparing girls for the real world: "The best thing we can do to help children suffering from 'mean girls' is to educate them and their families about personal boundaries, the impending roller coaster of puberty, and the reality of life to come: that is, that people sometimes change.

"It's too sad that I have had to tell my daughter things at the age of ten, that my mother didn't have to tell me until the age of fourteen or fifteen. The world has changed 100 years in 20 years and not necessarily for the better. I make a point of suggesting to all parents of girls aged 10 and up to read Reviving Ophelia themselves, let their daughters read it if they can, and then read and discuss the book together. This book deals with the many different pressures on young girls today, and encourages the conversations parents should have with their daughters, but don't always make time for...

"Encouraging girls to have lots of friends is always a good idea because we don't want our girls to become dependent on what one other person thinks or says. We need to be acutely aware of the negative messages the media feeds to our children. Young girls are enticed into believing and following what is 'cool' versus what is appropriate. From body image to behavior, the media bombards young girls (and encourages boys and young men) with information that stifles creativity and individuality. Such messages encourage girls to be focused on what boys/men are supposedly looking for in a female. We need to discuss with our children, both the good and the bad choices celebrities make and reflect on the consequences. And we need to constantly remind our girls that unlike their grandmothers and even some of their mothers, they can be or do anything they want to be or do if they are willing to work for it!

"We can have more conversations with them, we can share pertinent material, we can encourage, and we can set reasonable expectations; but at the end of the day, like us, they may still have to learn from their own mistakes."

Draw on your own experience to advise your child.

A California mom of a 3-year-old daughter and 5-year-old son remembers her own experience of being bullied by the mean girls: "It is so disheartening that this still goes on and there still seems to be no easy solution. My bully problems ended when I got so frustrated with the situation that I just didn't care about getting physically hurt anymore so I simply stood up for myself.

"In the eighth grade, a 'mean girl' was standing against my locker one day and refused to move despite my verbal request for her to do so. I then proceeded to open my locker with her still leaning against it. She announced, 'Ouch, Tracy, that hurt!' In reply, I stated that if she had moved when I had asked her to, it would not have happened in the first place. Ironically, she never bothered me again, and was actually nice to me from then on. Three years later, another girl wanted to fight me over a boy and I laughed in her face. The fight never happened and neither of us got the guy.

"As a someone who was bullied a lot as a child, I am trying to teach my children to be leaders of what is right. To not allow themselves or others to be bullied and to do their best to stop it from happening by telling the teacher (preferred) or telling the bully, him or her, to leave the other child alone. I have been doing role playing with my children where I am the bully, pushing (lightly) and teasing, and working on their reactions. This has helped so much since my son was bullied in preschool. No problems in Kindergarten as of yet, but I truly believe my children are more prepared than I was."

Comments from readers

"To Mean Girls in Private School Environment - Get Out ASAP. Recognize an unwinnable, inflexible situation and find an environment that supports and appreciates you and your family. I know it is hard to admit defeat, but this is wisdom talking. These people enjoy the power they have to destroy you, and they will if you let them. The more frazzled you get the better they feal. Stop feeding the beast. Take care of yourself. I have walked in your shoes - it was awful. I, surprisingly, found solace in public school. Private schools cater to the dollar - and parochial schools can legally disregard the constitution - meaning you have more rights in a public school. These people may win this battle - but you and your daughter will win the war. Good luck to you."
"How do you handle 'mean girls' in a private school environment? When you have spoken to the teacher and the principle doesn't get involved because it's up to the middle school teacher and it's a small school and there's no where for your child to escape it? The school has no guidance counselor or even considers it. They don't have any type of self-esteem building workshops for the girls to learn life skills and how to respect one another or work out issues. What does a parent do? I've discussed it with the teacher and a couple of the parents. One was very blase and offered no apologies for what her daughter initially did to hurt my daughter. Another parent flipped the handle with her daughter, made her apologize and understood why we were so upset. However, her daughter continues and now has now changed her tune and it's her poor daughter and it's mine that is the problem. So now they are telling the teacher things that my daughter supposedly said and has the others backing! it up and my daughter is firm in that she didn't say it and near tears that I don't believe her. I am at a breaking point and I don't know what my options are. She graduates from 8th gr. 2012 and doesn't want to be the new girl anywhere else again. These girls are mean and the school is not handling as I thought they would or how they promoted they do when I interviewed them and I'm at a loss right now because it's tearing at the core of me and making me angry. Do I pull her out for 8th grade year and save the headache and the tuition cost for this private school? Do I teach her how to handle them? And how does she in such a small school where one of the girls has been for all her life and is treated like a princess because her family is employed there! I'm viewed as the 'too involved' parent. I've been instructed to back off and then let the school handle it and they will inform me of what I need to be informed of!!! Any one have any suggestions before I have a breakdown!! I don't want to be more damaging to my daughter but I don't kn! ow how to separate myself from this to help her either. "
"Bullying does hurt, and you think no one can stop it. I got to a very bad school, full of bullies, both 'mean girls' and 'mean boys' and horrible teachers who do nothing about it. I get teased for everything -- from the clothes I wear, to even the kind of music I like. I get teased for singing (because I love it) and get teased for playing video games just because I am a girl. They usually stand around in the school yard, and stare at you - make you feel alone and powerless. They talk about you right in front of your face, and they might ever say it outloud instead of whisper. Make sure your child does not make friends with them -- because they will ditch you just like they did to me. But, don't EVER EVER EVER let them get you down. I learned to stand up for whats right, even it if you are standing alone. Be you -- and only you, and people will love you for it. :) My story goes on and on of the mean girls, that's why I'm not writing it! haha."
"Be careful when you tell your daughter that girls are mean because they are 'jealous' of you. I know some girls in HS that think they are better than others and blame that they don't have female friends because everyone is jealous of them. Female friends are important. "
"My daughter, a 10 grader, is new to her HS near Charlottesville, VA. She has moved before and has never had the problems she has at this school. She is very pretty, smart, sweet and friendly. Being from the south we are very open to new people. She was brought into a group and most recently the meanest in the group encouraged two girls in the group to remove her from the group. They were brutal, she told me a lot, but wouldn't tell me all, she was too embarassed that she had been talked to this way. I have never been spoke to like she was and hope I never am. She cried for weeks and is going to the library for lunch and breaks. She is so upset and afraid to reach out to others for fear of this type of rejection again. I have talked a mom and daughter, and another femal student and it was confirmed that this girl has power to make these girls do these nasty things. The strange thing is the meanest girl is not pretty, smart or friendly. I met her mother on two differ! ent occassions and seemed very unfriendly as well. So, there will be no discussion with her about this. I know that this person is very insecure, but she has a very vicious side that is uncontrolled. "
" Every girl, I don't care who they are, they are all insecure. It doesn't matter if they're the prettiest girl in school, sometimes they are the most insecure. They don't like other pretty girls,nice girls, or just plain smarter than they are girls because they think of them as a threat. So if your daughters think that they act the way they do or spread rumors because they think they're ugly or stupid or what ever they may say apbout them, they need to know that it is the exact opposite. I'm a freshman in High School, I should know. Just tell them to hold their head up high and laugh it off, because that will show every one that the ones who start those rumors are just insecure people who want everybody else to be as or more insecure than they are."
"i'm so happy a friend emailed this site to me i'm from boston ma my daughter is in 1st grade. she is a nice person who thought she made a friend from the previous year. i was also fond of the mother a couple of months into it i realized the mother was a trouble maker would talk about the other girls and their families. some of it was awful. i would nicely tell her that lets just see how it plays out.the mother is so bad that if you don't agree with her your reputation is on the line which i have found out.also her daughter is the meanest child i have ever met i'm trying to help my daughter through this it is very difficult. her daughter is very smart and the teacher's love her because of it they tend to ignore her behavior. so my daughter does not bother to go to the teacher when their is a problem because she gets in trouble. which i see is pretty scary. the mother talks about me to everyone because i am divorced and i work. but my children are with my mother or their fath! er when i am at work. both of us parent together and get along great for the kids. how do i help my daughter deal with this when i have a hard time dealing with her mom. i volunteer 1 day a week in her class and i am involved as much as i can in her school.i told my daughter that their are mean people out their. i just wasn't prepared for this at this age. an example of what she does is she will be nice to my daughter and they will be in the play ground my daughter gets happy that she is being nice to her then out of the blue when they are close to the teacher the other girl starts yelling your so mean i dont understand why you are so mean my daughter gets so dumbfounded like what?? how do you deal with this type of personality it's nuts! i told my daughter how i deal with her mother is i say hello and keep my distance because i dont agree with the way she speaks about other children and their families mine included. i'm in a situation where i can't stop the mother i just! stay away as much as possible. i would love any suggetions on! this.i am really in a position where the school is the best in our area it is public i could not afford to send her to private. i have noticed my daughters self confidence go way down and as much of a great support system from her parents extended family and friends i'm afraid this will change her what do i do? it got so bad that my daughter at lunch was sitting their being told she was ugly, had big eyes, was stupid and every thing else during her lunch she was crying so bad that the lunch mother had to move her to sit with her older brother. my daughter is none of those she is smart, funny and beautiful. the lunch mother even told her they are jealous of you because you are so pretty. the lunch mother has also gone out of her way to stop me and tell me what a nice girl i have. i went to the teacher about this situation she just said it's nothing the girls are just competative. i disagree. the lunch mother does watch out for her as much as possible but this girl has stolen her l! unch poored milk on her lunch you name it . sorry i must sound a little scattered i could probably go on all day about different situation about this please get back to me with any suggestion thankyou"
"Some kids bully with silence. It is easier to overlook and to get away with and can be very dangerous. Kids who can’t find friends where they live and where they should naturally be able to, need extra support. So do what you can to make sure they find support and friends somewhere safe. If you know kids who keep to themselves a lot, or seek friends outside of their neighborhood, you might want to look into this. And keep on teaching kindness. It doesn’t seem to come naturally. An example: A family moves into a new neighborhood and the oldest girl enters Junior High there. The neighbor girls choose to ignore this student, not talk to her at the bus stop, nothing for all the years of Junior High and may even suggest that their friends do the same resulting in the new girl living through a formative period for social growth without neighborhood or school friends. The impact can go beyond unhappiness and lead to difficulties in school and even dropping out. And it can lead to looking for companionship in less than safe circumstances. A good family is not enough. Kids need to be treated reasonably by other kids. What to do? Any ideas? What’s a good way for a parent to handle a situation where a child is being purposefully ignored? Sometime this is simply outside the power of a parent. And moving again is seldom an option for a family."
"My daughter (age 7) learned a while ago that kids can be mean. Without getting upset we just told her that some kids are unhappy and act out. We told her that if they are being mean just turn your back on them and find somebody nice to play with. Now she is older and has maintained that mindset. I have seen another girl verbally abuse my daughter when they didn't know I was watching and my daughter just walked away, smiling, and started talking to another girl. I have also seen my daughter physically defend another girl from the wrath of a much larger 'mean girl'. I think that as a parent you have to be proactive and not wait for the mean girls to strike. Tell your kids at an early age that there are going to be mean kids out there and avoid them when possible and defend yourself, and others, against them if neccessary."
"I just had to join this discusion. My daughter has been dealing with mean girls for the past 3 years. I've been up to the school, all they did was moved her class schedule. My daughter is an honor student and very creative and active. My daughter has alot of confidence in herself but the verbal situations she encounters often bothers her and she often finds herself alone at school. I would pick-up and move in a heart beat to a better place if I could afford to, and where she could have a good circle of friends. I'm a single mother and I've often wished there was a network for parents to bring there teenagers together to enage in positive activities with other positive families."
"I remember dealing with the mean girls in my school-years from grade school to middle. They were very intimidating! Somehow, they always sense who the vulnerable children are and I, being a sensitive child from a dysfunctional family, really had no one to help me. So, I would pretend I was sick and try to leave school. I believe counselors and teachers need to be more aware of these bullying incidents and provide more training to the children in regards to how to handle a situation when confronted by a bully or a group of bullies. Now, with my son, I provide advice on how to handle his situations. He has also been teased and bullied. He tells me there are many children who are outright disrespectful to the teachers in the classroom and he, being a thoughtful, caring and sensitive person, attempts to stop the children from exhibiting this bad behavior. It's disturbing to me that the administrators look the other way particularly in light of the increase in the incidence of sc! hool shootings. Many of these children who later became homicidal offendors were retaliating in response to repeated bullying and abuse from schoolmates. It is time for the schools to step up and become proactive in preventing these tragedies."
"Grade school and middle school were difficult for me because of the fear and intimidation I suffered at the whim of these mean girls. Few teachers or counselors intervened; I remember the school nurse asking me if someone had said something to upset me when I reported a stomach ache and requested to go home. I didn't tell her the truth. I still am not sure why but I am glad my son is able to be open with me about what is going on in the school. He, too, has been picked on in school. He reports that many kids in his school are continually disruptive in class, disrespectful to the teachers and to other students, and they get away with it. I think the schools need to increase their awareness of these issues and create intervention programs. If they did, maybe we wouldn't have as many incidents of school shootings. Many of these incidents occurred because the offendors could no longer tolerate being victimized by these wolf-packs of girls AND boys within their schools. Tragicall! y, these young lives could have been saved if the school officials had paid more attention and been pro-active in preventing these bullying behaviors from going on and on."
"As a parent of a special needs child I worry quite a lot about bullying and teasing and have tried to lay a strong foundationto help both my children with bullying. I let them know they are special and I enroll them in classes that will help themb physically and mentally strong. They have taken swimming and karate. But the MOST important thing is to make sure they have at least one good friend and to know what it is to be a friend. Because of my oldest childs special needs , I have always monitored him closely at the playground and on playdates. Sometimes it is very painful to watch other children being mean and at a certain point I need to step in but as my child gets older I try to let him deal with these issues and step in only as needed. I heard the most disturbing storyon a reputable radio news show of a mentally challenged adult who was physically and sexually abused with one of those screw type drain cleaners that needed to be surgically removed from this man. It brou! ght tears to my eyes and made me so upset I had to pull over in my car. It will not be until children and adults are taught tolerance for those who are different from them that these types of abuses will stop. My mother always brought mealong when she did volunteer work to help others whether it was mentally ill persons or the elderly or sick.The best thing you can do with your children is to teach them tolerance and help them develop empathy so they can speak up for themselves or others. Bullying needs to be addressed by the entire community, starting with the parents first and then the schools. If enough parents teach their children to not be bullies and to stand up to bullies there would be less bullying."
"My daughter's first encounter with 'Mean Girls' was in the First grade. A friend she had become very close to in Kindergarten (and I had become good friends with her mother and in fact we all had taken a vacation together) formed a 'Club' of four friends in the first grade and told my daughter she was not invited. My daughter was very hurt and could not understand why her good friend didn't want to play with her anymore. I called the girl's mother (my good friend) to discuss this and was surprised and shocked to hear her say what a cool thing this club was. It was hard to believe she couldn't see how mean this was. I helped my daughter through it by talking about both her feelings and 'cliques' or 'clubs' in general and what makes a good friend. She ended up making a lot of new friends that year, although it still hurt that her friend had turned on her. In the third grade she had another incident with another friend. She was good friends with 2 other girls. They all came ove! r to our house twice a week. One of those girls started lying, gossiping, even physically kicking and pushing the other girl, in spite of talking with the girl, the school and her mother. Eventually, she started doing the same to my daughter as well. The mean girl's mother pretty much felt that it wasn't a big deal and that the other girls were equally at fault. I finally had to stop having the girl come over and even requested this girl not be in my daughter's class the next year. I found a book called 'Odd Girl Out' that talked about girl bullying and gave a copy to each mother involved as well. It helped open our eyes to the fact that this is a big problem, but no solutions on what to do about it. The next school year I got involved in a program started by Cornerstone of the YMCA, called ABC parent reading program. It is a great program where you go into the classroom and read a book that teaches a different moral each month (for instance, a great book called 'My Secret! Bully' that specifically deals with girl bullying-gossiping, ! rumors e tc.) and then you discuss the book and do some type of activity with the kids that relate to the moral being taught. It is a great program and made me feel like I was actively doing something to help with problems that kids encounter. Plus it gives kids another adult to connect with and to go to if they are having problems. I do agree that EVERYONE must do their part to help-the schools must have a program in place on how to deal with these problems, teachers must also be actively involved and not only teach proactively, but get involved if there is a problem. Parents need to be involved in their kids lives (although in my experience, the 'mean girls' my daughter has encountered both had actively involved parents. They just had very different perspectives and found it hard to see any faults in their own daughters). We need to get to know their friends and also their friend's parents. We need to keep the line of communication open so if there is a problem, our children can fe! el like they can talk to us about it. We need to educate our children and give them tools and skills on how to handle social problems, just as we teach them how to learn math problems. And we need to reach out to other kids as well-not just our own. "
"On 'mean girls'. Mean girls who band together are no less than cowards who must band together out of fear and insecurity. The secret is to admire them for what they are. THey are doing an excellent job at being cowards and bullies. They are drawing a circle around themselves and rulling others out. Draw a bigger circle around them and include them in 'your' universe of love and admiration. You are bigger than them. They know it and fear it. Teachers should do talks or seminars on what makes bullies the way they are and why cowards fall into their trap. Once their cover is blown and they are exposed for what they are they are them powerless. Bullies and Cowards, Gangs and their Leaders, Fear Mongers and their Followers are all failures at being self- determined. Humanity is filled with examples to take lessons from. Look at the way people out of fear join the 'winning team' and loose their 'personal' integrity behind. They all want to be part of the winning team and forget the joy of ! being themselves. Cruel world they live, in making themselves right and everyone out of their group wrong. I can think of entire countries who act like bullies. Not hard to realize why it exists in kids herding together against other kids. Americs was founded on the idea of Brave, Self-determined Individuals who wanted to be free of Monarchs and Rulers. Have we all become cowards ourselves and joined up with bullies leading us to war?"
"'They were not punished and the teachers didn't seem to have the time to deal with these issues, as they rightfully should have.' Why is it right for me to deal with these issues? My class sizes have increased. The time to teach has been shortened. Everyone who has ever walked in to a school thinks they know how to do my job better than I and have the right to tell me how to do so. My raises have gone to pay for thousands of one-on-one Special Education aides whose fundamental job is to write dowm the homework for kids whose parents haven't taught them the basic skills of responsibility. Then the parents of those kids complain they're not getting a fair education if they're in small classes of other kids with special needs taught by someone who actually knows how to work around their disability (Oh! God forbid I said disability, I meant, special atribute ... Oh and I said God ... when it the correct expression should have been Mother Nature.) Now the class has 30+ students 4 with IEP's and special needs, 6 whose primary language isn't English, most of the 30+ repeat their parents' cuss words more! often than they do homework. This week I/we/our school were blamed in an SST meeting for ruining what was once a nice, polite, honors achieveing boy by a parents who'd just divorced a year ago. In the boy's new family with his father there is a 9 month old new step-sibling (do the math 9+9-12=cheating) and the mother goes out with her new boyfriend, leaves the boy at the father's house, and shows up an hour or 2 late to pick him up. Of course its the teachers and schools fault he's failing because we didn't return a phone call withing 24 hours. And I'm supposed to fix that your daughter's friends decided to shun her and are acting like their awful mothers. Please admit that you just want to hurt these little girls for hurting your little girl and because you can't do it you want us to do it for you. What is right is that we can look into the lie spreading. I suspect that's what the school did but only one girl's word against another's. When lies don't spread far enough to qualify for slander - or more likely, the mean girls spread lies to kids who know their liars and don't believe them. In such cases there is little to do but keep an eye out for new trouble from the ones you suspect are wrong but can't prove anything. I suspect that's what the school was doing, but again when it becomes 'Crazed Parent A' vs. 'Crazed Parent B' both parents are likely to write about us to websites because we didn't help them win."
"I was horribly bullied by the other girls in our private school from 4th-8th grade, I was spat upon, hit, called graphic names and lied about on a daily basis, with the teachers doing nothing. My mother didn't know what to do and when she contacted the school they implied it was my fault. My grades suffered along with my self esteem for those 4 years, but because we lived in a small area I could not transfer schools due to lack of bus service. When I started High School I begged my mother until she let me attend public school which she let me do, to my horror most of our small school went there too, the good thing was the High School was a large school that combined 4 towns. I was determined to not let this affect me any longer so I took matters into my own hands and reinvented myself and to my surprise it worked, slowly at first but by our second year I exceeded my goal of not being bullied anymore I was one of the popular kids and was actually voted homecoming princess. No! t only did it help my self esteem but testing showed I was above average in every subject which also helped me escape my tormentors, the school counselor figured I had low grades due to the bullying I had sustained. My son has been taught his whole life to not bully, but instead to help those who need a friend, and I am so proud of him. He will graduate next year and I know he will teach his children some day to be nice to all as you are the one who has to answer for your actions and you must be a friend in order to have good friends."
"I am a victim of a grown up bully - my mother-in-law! One of the worst things for me is that all the family members see what is going on but no one is willing to confront her and stand up for me. They avoid being the next victim that way. I think it's really important for us parents to teach our kids that just standing back and doing nothing but watching or listening is still particpating in the bullying. It gives the 'mean' girl a silent approval. Whenever we are carpooling kids around and we hear unfavorable conversations about other kids, we need to point out that they are gossiping and we don't do that. What is that saying by Dante? 'The hottest places in hell are reserved for those who, in time of great moral crisis, maintain their neutrality.' "
"There is something to take away from each of the above. I would add that encouraging our girls to 'mix it up' is also important. By that I mean our girls should focus on enlarging their group of friends; not the same play date with the same friend every week. Steer away from best friends, and concentrate on having close friends. From an early age, females develop intensely close relationships; technically, these are relationships they're not ready for. So keep it light by building close friendships with a hand full of friends. Also, teach our girls that a true friendship is one that is reciprocating. Remind them when they're doing all the work. "
"My granddaughter is 13 and a special needs child. She has a learning disability with her speech. She moved to a new school start of what should have been 7th. Immediately a girl at the school started picking on her and had her 'friends' telling her to watch her back and She's gonna beat you up. She had been kicked, hit, slapped, etc for a couple of weeks before she finally told us what was going on. Her grades were from A to F in the 6 weeks. The girl was in every class and the teachers said my granddaughter was making too much of things. Basically to get over it. I talked to the school,as did her mom, but I told them that my grand daughter was a blue belt in Karate and knew self defense and if this continued to happen to her then she had our permission to defend herself the proper way with no one getting hurt (they were taught that in Karate). That if she got in trouble with it then I would be at the school with a lawyer and 2 police to 'round up' the people who were th! reatening her and we would go to court. Her situation was solved when they determined that since she had already been in the 6th grade in another school she was able to go forward to the 7th because the district was a bit behind the previous one so they promoted her and moved her to a totally different school. She got her confidence back and is doing great in school. The school did not want to take responsibility for the problem and said they knew nothing was going on until I confronted them with the fact that she had been telling 2 of them every day that this child was picking on her. She is tall, long blonde hair and pretty. Her only glitch is her speech and she is very smart. She is happy now and enjoys school. Sometimes if at all possible the only way to get anything resolved is to threaten them with legal action. I had to do that to make them pay attention. The girl is probably picking on someone else now but at least they are aware and hopefully they will sto! p it before it goes way too far. They will if they care. We ! talk to my grand daughter all the time about everything and I don't ever want her to think that we don't hear her when she needs to say something. Good or bad. I agree that the apple doesn't fall far from the tree. My daughter is a single mom and between us we have been able to raise an eager for life, thoughtful and kind child who is turning into a beautiful young lady. Doesn't matter what the world throws at her we've been able to help her through it. Prayer and lots of it works wonders too!"
"There is an Anti-Bullying school based curriculum out there that has been established in some of the schools around us, they start it in kindergarten and it does all the way through 12th grade. It is called Oelweus pronounced (Ol-vay-us). I am not quite sure I spelled it right, but it does a nice job working with school teachers, administration, counselors, and families on this issue and teaches the kids how to deal with bullies and to report them so the bullying stops."
"I am so glad to finally see mom's bringing this out in the open. It is a bigger issue than people realize. I am a single mother of three daughters, and two of my girls moved in with their dad just to get out of the school where I lived at the time. They were harrassed so relentlessly, that they just could not take it any more. They got into physical fights, as well as taking verbal abuse, being called horrific names I can't repeat. My children had no business living with their father, as he is not a good influence, and pays them no attention, but they thought it was better than what they were going through on a daily basis at school. You see, when your child reaches a certain age, they can choose where they want to live, whether it is good for them or not, is irrelevent. Needless to say, their lives are not turning out as I had hoped, and as a caring mom, I can tell you that it hurts more than anything in the world. I begged the school to take notice, and to please help me, or my children were going to leave the school, and my home, just to get away from the insanity that was going on there. The only reason this was happening in the first place, is that we had just moved there a year before, and the teenage girls did not accept my daughters as part of the their group. Simply, it's because they had not grown up there. The school informed me that they could do nothing, that they could not be everywhere at once, watching every child every minute. One mother threatend to sue me because my child defended herself, and actually called the police on me. Another mother(acting like a mean girl), said to me 'well whatever, but I don't think my child is doing anything wrong, it's your child's word against mine'. So the mom that stated, 'the apple doesn't fall far from the tree' is absolutely correct. This is where the true root of the issue lies, with lack of parenting skills today, and a lack of moral behavior of parents today. Most of these children are just acting out what they learn at home. I pray that any single mom's out there, will take their daughter's complaints about school bullying very seriously, otherwise you may loose them like I did."
" My daughter has had trouble with mean girls also. My children are taught not to fight unless their life is in danger or they are really scared. I went to schools in Miami fla. and know how horrible and mean girls can be. My daughter ended up punching a child in the stomach in second grade for spitting on her, she must of been petrified--this happened in the library with adults present so I did not punish her @ home.Although she did recieve detention and we went through the whole thing about how to tell a teacher if there is a problem. The SPITTER did not recieve punishment. Who knows how long this kid tormented her, I feel the words don't tattle tale have been used too much in our schools and they could have more supervision. This incident really woke me up! What does it take for a child to feel they have to hit someone. So I did something about it. I got involved. I think it IS important for parents to be involved in school activities as much as possible so the other ch! idren are familiar with the parent and they seem to have more of a bond with even the uncool kids than if they've never met the child's parents. I'm involved with the student store which is available for 1 week a month during the lunch periods (1st thru 8th) prime socialization time for kids, and I make sure to visit my daughters table and talk to each and everyone of those kids.I also familiarize myself with the other grades. We have had no problems this year except normal things like so and so didnt want to play with me or this person sat with this person but no crying or not wanting to go to school. My children are taught not to fight unless their life is in danger or they are really scared. They are taught to stand up for themselves and others especially those who are week. Thank you for this article it's real and happening and the worst part about it is the bullies are crying for attention, someone to care about them. You can't love if your not loved. "
"My oldest son was bullied for a long time before I found out and I was devistated. He told me and the school that he hadn't said anything because he was still trying things to make this kid come around. He tried to befriend him, talk to him, give him things to make him feel special and feel as though he had a friend, but nothing worked. They did become friends for a little bit my son said and in that time, the bully confided in my son that he had been in foster care and that his mom was an addict and would be coming to get him soon. My son is a very tender empathetic soul. Then one day he just turned on him again. When I found out I cried, it had been going on for a year. My son would wear his backpack all day because this bully would kick him in the back. In private my son told me that he was just trying to do what I had taught him, and that hitting never solved anything. I do believe that, but I did tell him that he can stand up for himself and if someone hits him! , he can hit them back if it is the last resort to diffuse the situation."
"My daughter has encountered many of these girls at school and she is only in second grade. I usually tell her that those girls have emotional problems and that when they make someone else feel bad it makes them feel powerful. I also tell her that just because a couple of girls decide that they are 'all that' and popular doesn't mean they really are. I also tell her to try to find other friends that aren't part of some little clique. So far it has worked pretty well. She has a lot of friends and just ignores the others."
"I have two teen age twins who have been on both the receiving end and the giving end of mean gossiping behavior. It is important to emphasize the consequences of gossip both the mean and the trivial; I try to explain that in the coming adult years they will not always feel friendly toward everyone but that is not a reason to be hurtful or uncivil. I have found in three situations that friendships exploded it was traced back to a third person carrying lies to both parties,'she said, she said' in a deliberate attempt to break up the friendship and I remind both girls how devastating it was for them and how important to go to the friend and clarify the situation."
"The more that you support and communicate with your child the better results in this cases of verbal harassment. You are raising strong character kids for this Society and this two things work effectively."
"that was a wonderful article amd my daughter is a second grader and is going through the same stuff.her 1st grade teacher was the only one to address the issue. it helped some.parents do need to be told and involved in it dauhters self esteem has been rocked very badly and that will only hurt her in the future.its a serious problem that needs to be adressed as bullying is.this is emotional bullying."
"We just moved here from N.Y. school. My daughter was not happy at school because the means girls. My daughter in 2 grade get bully and teasing. She told, she was hurt and sad so she cry in the class. the means girl tripping her and said she urgly and tell teacher she steal teacher ruler. I'm really sad my daughter tell the teacher she no steal is belong to her n the theacher said i believe u and order her to keep the ruler away. Why the school did't do anything with the means girl. As i know school have a rules for the kids bully n teasing orther people. I don't know what to do. I want to change school for her but in my area this is the only school i have to go. the orther is no transportantion n i don't drive. "
"We have been experiencing the same thing. Mine is 13 and all of a sudden the target of most of the kids in our small school. 8th grade is the worst!! I tell her that these kids feel horribly about themselves and only feel better when they make others feel worse. However, they only have that power if you give it to them. You do need to stand up for yourself. It may be as simple as staring back when being given an dirty look. Just remember, when the kids can't make you feel horrible anymore, it defeats the purpose of the behavior. It will stop. It does take standing up for yourself though. Ignoring it makes it worse. We had to go as far as pressing charges for threats and harrassment. Needless to say, those kids don't bother her at all anymore. It just stinks that you go to the school and make them aware first and nothing is done about it. I was told because nobody else (other than one other girl) saw or heard anything, they couldn't do a thing about it. Of course those kids don't want to say anything, they don't want to be next! My daughter is a Student Ambassador, an honor student every marking period, one awesome athlete, and Student Council President. Never a problem in school at all. For them not to believe her because there's only one corraboration is incredible to me."