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Comments

Anne

I think you're spot on, but it's a bit different with girls as they have this whole passive/aggressive behind-the-scenes stuff going on. Fortunately, my daughter saw, at an early age, the folly of all that "drama" and stayed out of it. Good luck ... it was definitely different than with my boys.

Anne

I think you're spot on, but it's a bit different with girls as they have this whole passive/aggressive behind-the-scenes stuff going on. Fortunately, my daughter saw, at an early age, the folly of all that "drama" and stayed out of it. Good luck ... it was definitely different than with my boys.

Backpacking Dad

No doubt girls have to deal with bullies differently. I wouldn't even have the first clue how to type girl bullies. So I'm going to have to solicit advice from many other people by the time my daughter is old enough to have to deal with it.

The one thing that's slipped out into popular culture is how much more vicious girl bullies are seen/depicted than boys. But that might be a sensationalization (new word!) rather than fact.

Headless Mom

As the mom of a teenage girl I feel somewhat in touch with this subject. (My girl is similar to Anne's though, hates the drama for the most part.) The girl stuff is definitely more emotional, and in general girls scar with this way worse than something physical or more aggressive.

My general advice for the parent of a girl is to keep the lines of communication open and early-they'll keep talking as teens if you have the relationship established. Then if/when any bully (or other) situation comes up you'll know better which kind (!) and how to handle it within her personality.

Great post BpD!

amy

I too have a teenage daughter...2 of them, 14 & 12. I started reading books that deal with these issues long before they ever became reality in our house. Good book for girl issues is Odd Girl Out all about cliques etc. Another one for both genders at all ages is The Bully, The Bullied, and The Bystander. Identifies the types of kids that bully, their motivation, and how to empower our kids to deal or report and the difference between reporting and tattling. Very good book. A book I have yet to get my hands on but is worth the purchase price from what I've heard is Queen Bees and Wannabees. Again about teen girls and cliques.
Unfortunately we can't protect/shield them from everything. They learn hard lessons about true friends and the value of them at an early age. Unfortunately it's a lesson learned not usually taught so we can't protect them from it 100%.

Jennifer

I agree with the above poster. Part of growing up is learning how to deal with people and not everyone is going to like you and want to be your friend. Life is hard. I have three daughters and the only advise I can offer is to love your daughter and make your home a safe, loving refuge for her. Home is where your children will find their strength, with family, not hanging out at the Mall with their crew. The teenage years are very short.

Brandy

As a woman who was bullied as a child, I can say that your analysis of the types of bullies is correct. And now that I have children I worry incessantly that they will be bullied as well. But, I will say that bullies can not be ignored. Not by the child being bullied, not by the parents and certainly not by the authorities.

foradifferentkindofgirl

I had experience with being bullied in late middle school/high school. I was a very quiet girl. VERY. I also just wanted to get through the days and deal with what I'd have to deal with when I got home at night, which was an entirely different ballgame. For some reason, being a quiet kid helped target me as being "too good" for others, for one. Lots of drama, and an inability to know how to deal with it, made my later school years an exercise in frustration.

Now, my oldest son will be entering middle school next fall, and there is a part of me that dreads the change this part of his life could bring. This is a time when kids start testing their power, and, should he have to deal with bullies, I want to be able to help. I believe we've raised him to be a kid who won't be a bully, nor a victim, but I can't imagine we'll get through the remainder of his school years unscathed by it.

Samurai Beetle

When I was in high school, girls were cruel in an attempt to make themselves feel better. It really hit me one day when the ugliest girl in class - really she had rat shaped features and I felt rather bad for her until she started viciously attacking me in Food 101 for something I can't even remember. I just remember thinking wow, this bully thing is really just a way for her to feel better about herself.

Rachel

I appreciate this post... Not so much because I am worried about bullies for my kids (I am.), but because I'm worried that my kid IS the bully.

It is so important for him to be right and/or to look good, he has hurt other kids who get in his way. He has had difficulty dealing with being angry and looses control at the least provocation.

The thing you wrote about "the glory hound" fits him, I think. One of the ways that it's possible to dissapate his anger is to direct it toward something funny. - which is basically, another good way to deal with this kind of bully (for all you other parents out there).

And... anyone have suggestions for moms of the angry ones?

Backpacking Dad

Thanks a lot for that comment, Rachel. I think it's just as important for us as parents to be worried that our kids are becoming bullies.

It's probably easier to worry about being bullied because those of us who have dealt with bullies retain those memories pretty strongly; I don't know how strongly former bullies remember how they dealt with those around them, but I imagine that they end up at a little remove, and so they don't worry about the bullying issue, from either side, as much as the rest.

Excellent question, Rachel.

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