Things are definitely weird around here!

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by tiredmommy, Jul 28, 2009.

  1. tiredmommy

    tiredmommy Site Moderator

    As some of you may know, the daughter of my bff has bullied Duckie on multiple occasions over the last year. It has been difficult, of course, to keep Duckie away from A but I try to limit their time together and closely monitor when they are together. They will not be in the same classroom next fall which is a huge burden lifted for Duckie as it's hard to concentrate when she isn't sure if A is her friend that day or not.

    I can't keep them totally separated because the have the same circle of friends and take swim class together but I'm doing what I can to limit their contact as familiarity really seems to breed contempt in this case. So they both attended a birthday on Sunday and my bff was helping our hospitalized friend's mother with the kids. I offered to drop A off after the party... which became a play date because I couldn't get out of it without risking the feelings of bff and A. I stayed on top of them and I know that A didn't bully Duckie. They had swim on Monday and bff asked me to take A to the park afterward and she'd be there in a few minutes after she packed a quick lunch for A. Bff doesn't normally like going to the park but there was a particular program going on.. it wasn't a big deal (?).

    Then, Duckie and I show up today at the park for science club and bff and her kids are there. Bff told me yesterday that A has been invited to the same sleepover birthday party next weekend but told her mom (my bff) that she'll stay overnight only if "her best friend" Duckie stays over.

    I'm starting to feel like Duckie is being pressured into being A's friend. :(
     
  2. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    Well, it's probably a very good thing that they won't be in the same class next year. In the mean time, there's not much you can do if they are both invited to the same event, but I think you're doing the best you can to limit Duckie's exposure. Does Duckie have reservations about A, or is she not as aware of how A treats her?
     
  3. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    It sounds like it- a lot. What an awkward position. I hope no one's feelings have to get hurt but it sounds like you are going to have to start dropping some stronger "hints". I absolutely hated and resented it when people tried to push me into play dates and acting like I liked someone that I didn't like at all as a child. I understood if it was a group at school (like a team in PE class) or an occasional play time so my mom could do something, but it can be miserable if it becomes routine and expected often.
     
  4. tiredmommy

    tiredmommy Site Moderator

    She's aware, but I think she wants things to be good between them. She's no angel, of course, but A truly has caused Duckie some emotional damage. It sounds weird but I think A doesn't really like Duckie. She just wants to keep Duckie in the friend column while pushing her around emotionally. I truly believe that she's putting on an act to lull Duckie into complacency. I think Duckie is mostly confused if you Know what I mean?.
     
  5. tiredmommy

    tiredmommy Site Moderator

    klmno- Duckie asked me two questions last month after the latest major incident:

    1. Will A turn all of Duckie's friends against her?

    2. Does Duckie have to be friends with A because bff and I are friends?

    I answered "no" to both questions.
     
  6. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Having had two girls and three boys, I could write a book on how ambiguously and strange girls interact socially with one another. I've had similar heartbreak for both of my girls. In fact, as they get older, it got worse...ugh!!! I truly think that not being able to count on her friends helped push my oldest daughter to the dark side for a while. My youngest daughter is more resilient, but she's had her own tears. Girls love and hate each other to death. It's very confusing. I can feel for your sweet little Duckie.
     
  7. tiredmommy

    tiredmommy Site Moderator

    Thanks MWM... I think Duckie is going to need a lot of support in the coming years.
     
  8. Fran

    Fran Former Site Owner

    Giving Duckie support and keeping a watchful eye is the best you can do at this time.
    Eventually, the goal is for Duckie to have enough self confidence and emotional maturity to not be affected by A's behavior. Learning to deal with bullies and other people's attempts to undermine one of their own sense of self is all parent's goal. It just takes years. If kids were born with it, they wouldn't need parents to guide, teach and watch like a hawk. LOL.

    Fingers crossed that Duckie will take all of this in stride and not give too much value to A;s opinion or existance.
     
  9. DazedandConfused

    DazedandConfused Active Member

    This sort of thing was very difficult for me to deal with when it happened to Daughter. Unfortunately, it's very common with some girls to flit back and forth on whether or not they want someone as a friend. I think what is important is that Duckie understand that it is not about HER. It's BFF's daughter that has the issues.

    I think one of the reasons it was hard for me to see it happening to daughter was because I remember my own experiences with it so vividly. To this day, I remember one girl, we shared the same horse trainer, in particular, liking me, not liking me, liking me, not liking me. I didn't hang around her at school and I didn't have a problem with her, but apparently she had one with me at times. She said some really awful things to me, then out of the blue, she would be sweet and friendly. To this day I have NO IDEA what HER problem was. We were both 12.

    Just keep doing what your doing.
     
  10. bby31288

    bby31288 Active Member

    Tiredmommy. We don't do sleepovers. Period the end. I let them go to the party and I pick up at a time that is agreed upon by the parents. It could be 9:00 pm or 11:00 pm. I find that other parents are not as concerned by what is going on at sleepovers. I had an issue once, a bunch of girls back in the 2nd grade, bullied difficult child into doing something not very nice to another littler girls. Its funny how they seem to pick 2 kids with the least self esteem. So that was the end of sleepovers. Just my 2 cents.
     
  11. Star*

    Star* call 911........call 911

    TM,

    Well if you can figure out girls - more power to you. If you figure out women - you're going to be very wealthy. :tongue:

    Our local NAMI chapter gives monthy meetings and one of the most asked for and spoken about topics is BULLYING - is your child a victim? How to help your child understand and stand up for themselves. I think it would be worth a look-see to check into it if for NO other reason than to get information for yourself. I think you are handling these situations right now beautifully, but it never hurts to educate yourself for future confrontations.

    Theres also an (suprisingly) entire section at BAM, and Walden on bullying. Worth a read if you have a moment. Some of the books are even at Duckys level with retorts that will stop BFF's daughter cold. ;)
     
  12. tiredmommy

    tiredmommy Site Moderator

    Fran- While Duckie doesn't exactly take A in stride she does appear to be able to work through the problems. I've been pulling strings to make sure she spends time with the kinder kids she knows so she gets plenty of more appropriate interactions.

    D&C- Duckie and I have been talking an awful lot about where her responsibilities as a friend end and where the other child's responsibilities begin. It can be a challenge for an adult, let alone a difficult child child. It's very frustrating for me because I was mostly clueless as a kid whereas Duckie is quite socially aware.

    Beth- I hear you about sleepovers. I doubt I'll get much sleep on Friday night due to worry; I probably wouldn't let her stay except that the party is for her oldest and best friend.

    Star- Thanks for the resources... it will give me good reading for Friday night, lol!
     
  13. ML

    ML Guest

    As you may remember, manster has a friend "R" who bullies him emotionally as well. He doesn't know how to stand his ground and consequently has gotten to the point that he doesn't want to play with her AT ALL any more. I've tried to hint and explain to her mom the best I can but manster is now adamant about wanting zero contact. It gets hard when mom calls to have me pick R up from daycare on occasion and then R literally begs me to let her come over.

    So I can relate and I feel your pain. Hopefully these kids will develop enough self confidence that they won't be as effected by the dominating bullies of the world.

    hugs, ML
     
  14. tiredmommy

    tiredmommy Site Moderator

    Thanks ML. I think the hardest part is remembering my priorities: Duckie's well-being is my priority while A is bff's. I don't need to feel guilty if A is having a tantrum because bff couldn't arrange a play date or A is bored. I can feel bad for A and bff that they are having issues without putting Duckie in emotional harm's way.
     
  15. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    I'm going to jump back in here to add another 2 cents. LOL! I think you are handling the situation very well TM- especially about Fri. where this was not planned to be an event with A there. But I'd like to suggest that we warrior moms might be too worried about the bullies' (and maybe their parents') feelings sometimes. Not that we shouldn't care about another's feelings, but I see it as natural consequences for the bullies or otherwise "not-so-nice" kids if a kid gets tired of dealing with them and doesn't want to play with them anymore. True, it's difficult even for adults to deal with certain personalities but we try to adjust and stand up for ourselves when need be. Still, if we are continuously having to make this effort with someone we are socializing with, it's pretty normal and healthy to stop socializing with them, in my humble opinion. Maybe I'm too hardened but I find it perfectly acceptable to let another parent know- nicely and subtly- that my kid doesn't want to hang out with that kid anymore. OK- maybe I fudge a little sometimes and word it more like "I don't think this friendship is a positive thing for difficult child and I need to keep him away from C for a while". If the parent asks why, I have said because difficult child gets his feelings hurt easily, or doesn't seem to enjoy it as much as he used to, his interests are changing or whatever.

    TM, I feel for the issues your bff is dealing, too, but let's face it, A has to learn that a tantrum won't get her friends or keep them and her mom needs to be teaching her that. My son went thru a stage where if someone gave him his/her phone number, he would call the person 3 or 4 times a DAY! I told him not to, he would sneak, I tried to explain that it's not polite, etc., but he had to learn the hard way- by kids telling him they were sorry they gave him the number. After other kids did things like this 2-3 times, he got the point.
     
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2009
  16. tiredmommy

    tiredmommy Site Moderator

    I couldn't agree more! Duckie's best friend's (known as M) mother (& grandmother that will also be there) know the score on A. They also really like Duckie and appreciate the longevity of the friendship and loyalty between the girls as M is a bit of difficult child too. But Duckie has never once turned her backed on M or vice-versa.

    My bff seems to really have her head in the sand where A is concerned... there's always an excuse for A's poor behavior. And even when she decides that things are going to change, nothing ever does.
     
  17. bby31288

    bby31288 Active Member

    Its good to know that M's mother and grandmother know the history between A and Ducky. That would have been my next suggestions! ;) See together we CAN handle all of this GFGdome
     
  18. tiredmommy

    tiredmommy Site Moderator

    Update:

    The party went well. :thumbsup:

    M's mom kept a close watch over the girls so there was nothing able to get started between the girls. Then, "A" decided to call her mom and go home for the night. So Duckie had a great time with the remaining girls. :)

    There is a downside, though... the girls got less than an hour sleep. :wildone:

    Four out of five of the girls were walking in a parade and had various other things going on today. So Duckie is about to get in the shower and get ready for an early night. :winks:
     
  19. SRL

    SRL Active Member

    This has been the social drama of my easy child daughter's elementary years.

    In pre-K and K, they were best friends.

    In 1st The Girl dumped easy child totally for another girl and easy child was devestated. easy child is miserable half the year and finally makes new friends.

    In 2nd The Girl is split from the other girl and is back in easy child's class. She decides she wants easy child back for her exclusive friend now and clings, cries, and other assorted manipulative moves. When easy child made it clear she'd play with her some but was also going to play with the other friends she'd made (including one very good one) The Girl moves in and starts to cut out easy child's friends to get *them* as exclusive friends. She also starts taking cheap shots at easy child such as "Your hairstyle doesn't match your face" and "Your skin is too white, you need a tan" (my daughter has beautiful porcelain skin).

    In 3rd The Girl continues working on getting easy child's best friend away from her. Lots of frustration and tears and I had to have the teacher intervene in the cheap shot department.

    In 4th The Girl finally totally succeeds in taking easy child's best friend away from her. Not only that, she never passed up a chance to rub it in her face.

    In 5th, I'm so thrilled we don't have to deal with this anymore because I'm HOMESCHOOLING. Next week easy child is going to an annual church camp with the former best friend who was wedged away from her so I'm hoping there is no resurgence of hurtful feelings. If so, it will be the end of the road for church camp because I'm done dealing with these chicks.

    I seriously feel for you, TM. The best advice that I can give you is to arm Duckie with phrases she can tell herself over and over when she feels her self-esteem challenged. The other thing that helped a lot was role playing so when cheap shots and inappropriate behavior came her way, she was prepared to deal with it. easy child did much better when she had a comment on the tip of her tongue and had practiced it with the right attitude. The Girl always backed down when she realized easy child wasn't going to take her baloney.
     
  20. tiredmommy

    tiredmommy Site Moderator

    Thanks for the reply, SRL. Duckie's current retort is "Oh grow up, A!" This is pretty effective with A because she is one of the youngest kids in the grade while Duckie is one of the older kids. It helps that she and I have been practicing social interaction since Duckie was very young. She does the tone and eye-roll perfectly. :rolleyes:

    I am concerned, though, that Duckie is at a social disadvantage (so to speak). She does not have play dates every day... she just can't hold it together that well without a little down time thrown in. A, on the other hand, has play dates every single day. Bff calls around (she actually has a list) and sets stuff up so that A and her brother have someone to play with. Personally, I think it's nuts and fuels some of A's difficult behavior. She will have an absolute meltdown if her brother has someone to play with and she doesn't. She had a four hour play date yesterday before the birthday party. I figured the party was Duckie's social time and had her spend a little calm & quiet quality time with me during the day.
     
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