Is my DD a bully?

(12 Posts)
Lotofhardwork Thu 25-Oct-12 13:57:01

I was approached on the playground by a parent last Friday who said that my DD was a problem and had upset a lot of other children in the past. I was surprised and asked if they could be more specific as I wasn't aware of anything. They mentioned 'things' last year and said she had kicked another child on the Monday and that childs mother was very upset. Again I said I hadn't been told anything by school and the parent replied that it was probably because I am a parent governor and was surprised to find out that I am not one anymore. They then said it was great my daughter had just passed her 11+ but that this was an important year for their DD and her friends (who are in Year 5) and they didn't need my DD to cause trouble. When I asked if his DD was having a problem with my DD now and could we sit them down together and get it sorted, he said there wasn't a problem right now. As soon as I saw the parent of the DD mine 'kicked', I went up to her and asked what happened as I didn't know anything. She said my DD had kicked hers on Monday at school but her DD hadn't told anyone. As soon as they came out of school, I asked my DD in front of the other mother what had happened and was it true? My DD looked me in the eye and said it wasn't true and then did the same to the other mum. Her DD wouldn’t look at me or my DD and hid behind her mother and when my DD asked when it had happened and why was she saying that, the other DD went quiet. So I asked if there was anyone else there that I could ask and one other girl was there the whole time. So I text her mother and asked her to ask what had happened and she came back saying nothing had happened and she didn’t see my DD kick the other child and she was there the whole time. The other childs bruise is massive and just behind her knee and I can’t understand how she could have gotten that bruise with crying or calling out or making some noise.

Anyway, I spoke to the Teacher and explained that I was confused and were they aware of anything and was there a problem with my DD that I needed to get involved with? The teacher said 4 mothers had come in together to mention their general concerns about my DD’s bitchiness and the kick but with no details and that School was watching all of them as they hadn’t seen anything at all. My DD is a confident, strong willed character and there will be inevitable clashes with other children who aren't as strong but I can’t deal with it if there are no details and it makes me wonder whether that very friendly group of mothers overreacted and have made my daughter out to be an ‘evil villan’ for reasons I can’t understand? None of them will look me in the eye or engage in a conversation so I can't get to the bottom of it.

If my DD is causing a problem, I am happy to deal with it but without any details, there isn’t a lot I can do. Their children are often saying mean things to my DD and excluding her but I try to teach my child to ignore it and play with other children which she does quite happily.

Sorry for the long message. What should I do next?

greenfern Thu 25-Oct-12 14:17:14

Its a difficult one as you don't know the true extent of whats going on especially if these parents are rallying together in a clique way and making out your daughter is the naughty one and their children are doing nothing wrong.
I would speak to the class teacher again, make sure she is fully aware of the
situation just to keep an eye on things between these girls.

Have a chat to your daughter about bullying behaviour, sure you have probably done that in the passed, anyway its just good to reinforce.

Good luck

Mycatcoco Thu 25-Oct-12 14:18:21

"My DD is a confident, strong willed character and there will be inevitable clashes with other children who aren't as strong"

Why is it inevitable that she will clash with others? It is very hard to see fault in our own children, but I think in this case there is no smoke without fire.

TeaBrick Thu 25-Oct-12 14:23:29

I agree there should be nothing inevitable about any clashes your dd may have with others. You need to help her to develop the necessary skills to overcome this. It makes her sound domineering tbh.

Lotofhardwork Thu 25-Oct-12 14:33:41

Thanks for your replies.

Sorry - was a poor choice of words. I meant girls do fall in and out with each other at that age but it doesn't mean there isn't two sides to every story. I don't think my DD is an angel but she is confident. She doesn't have clashes with other children and is actually very fair minded and caring most of the time. I posted because I am concerned and have already had a conversation with her about bullying as a result but it is difficult to explain the impact of something or the way it is said if you don't have any details. I did speak to the teacher immediately and addressed the 'kicking' accusation with the parent and my DD immediately but I have asked the only independent witness and she said she didn't see it so I am not sure what to do next. perhaps i ill wait and see what the teacher says after half term. Thanks again.

BeatTheClock Thu 25-Oct-12 14:34:43

It sounds like there could be a problem when you say 'My DD is a confident, strong willed character and there will be inevitable clashes with other children who aren't as strong' why inevitable? Being confident doesn't mean you have to clash.

But the mothers and the school are not dealing with this in an effective way at all. If the parents have complained to the school you should have been kept in the loop. I would be very annoyed with the school tbh.

PurplePidjInAPointyHat Thu 25-Oct-12 14:35:03

Something about the other parents' and dcs' behaviour is making me go hmm

Is it possible that the other girls are ganging up on your dd to get her into trouble? I'd leave it in the teacher's hands for now and make sure your dd is talking to you about stuff, no matter how inane the prattle might appear wink

You make it sound - in your description - that the other girl behaved the way she did when questioned about the kick that she was lying - to me it actually sounded as though she was scared of your daughter and the other girl who said nothing happened was maybe scared as well?

TiAAAAARGHo Thu 25-Oct-12 14:48:25

In essence, you have a situation where a group of girls (who may or may not dislike your DD and have made it up) said something totally unverifiable about your DD (who may or may not have done anything). No-one saw anything and, frankly, there's not enough to go on to decide what happened one way or the other and the school can't start punishing people for things that they have no real evidence of.

The school should have informed you as you need to be kept in the loop on these things, so make sure they know to tell you about any further allegations.

As for the rest - spend time with your DD and make sure that you have drilled into her that it's not appropriate to hit/kick people unless she is under physical attack.

Lotofhardwork Thu 25-Oct-12 15:03:54

The other girl is not scared of mine - in fact they are very good friends and I don't think she would lie to her mother about it. But I am open minded or else I wouldn't have tried to check with the other child or school. I will speak to school again to make sure they keep me in the loop. Thanks again.

tiggytape Thu 25-Oct-12 17:53:46

As a general observation, not being able to look you in the eye is not proof the other girl is lying (nor is it proof your DD is lying of course). An adult asking a child about an incident of bullying needs to be handled sensitively. You cannot accost a child in the playground in front of their mother and other adults demanding they repeat their allegations for all to hear. No wonder she hid!

I understand you want to get to the bottom of it but it if is entirely happening (or alleged to be happening) at school, you need to let the teaching staff deal with this not start questioning children yourself or try to rustle up witnesses. Again, even if a child did witness a bullying incident, they are going to feel very intimidated relaying this to the bully's parents and perhaps deny all. If the teacher is aware that some girls are making accusations about your daughter which your DD denies, it is likely they will keep a much closer eye on things and be able to gauge what is going on.

Speaking to the school direct each time is the best way to address this and hopefully they in turn will keep you fully informed.

Lotofhardwork Thu 25-Oct-12 19:37:15

Thank again for your comments. I see your point and while I didn't ask the child if my DD had kicked her, I didn't mean to suggest the other child is lying which is why I asked if anyone else was there. I didn't ask the only other child who was there anything - I asked her mother if she could ask if anything happened and explained that I was concerned because I had been told my DD kicked the other child and I wanted to know if her child had seen it.

I am going to do exactly what most of you have advised and leave it to school. I will check with the teacher each week and see if there is anything I should know about.

I just didn't know whether there was anything else to do as I would like very much to sort it out but realise it is best left to school. My DD and the other DCs (including the one who was 'kicked') have played together as a group every day with other children as well and seem to be getting on fine and are all happy and friendly in the playground after school. Thanks again.

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