12yr old's friend problem?(5 Posts)
My DD is really dreading starting school in three days. I kinda thought it was just normal stuff, and then I got a bit more concerned. At first I thought it might be bullying (DS2 was bullied because of his accent and stuff when we came over from Australia- and I'm a bit paranoid since then) but she told me all about this 'friend'.
In October, having made her new friends and stuff, this girl who no one likes was crying about something or other and the teacher asked DD to look after her for the rest of the lunchtime. Let's call the girl A. A expected it next day and stuff, and is now trailing after DD and trying to be involved. At the start, DD said she didn't mind- her friends didn't mind either. But it got really, really annoying after a while. A really has NO friends. People just don't like her. She's one of those people who doesn't know when to stop and doesn't know when people don't like her- so the people who might have been friends with her were put off. DD doesn't like her, apparently she copies her work etc; DD is intelligent, top of her class normally and A is boring for her because she hasn't read what DD has read, she doesn't understand some of the words DD uses and when DD is forced (if A hasn't got a partner in class work, as is usual, DD has to be partnered with her even if she's already in a group) it means that DD has to choose between bad marks or taking over all the work.
To give you an example of that- near the end of the summer term, they had a history project on Rochester. They were in a group of four and tried to avoid A (she was really bugging them by then, following DD around when she didn't want her, annoying DD's real friends, taking her friends' places on coaches and stuff) but A had to join them. DD was team leader because she loves history. She decided everyone should do two things on the castle and one thing on the cathedral. A said she couldn't do one of the castle things, so was given two easy things to do on the cathedral. Because there was some extra work DD would have been doing four things anyway- now she was doing five things for the castle and one thing for the cathedral. A said she needed help etc; until it became clear that DD would be the one who was REALLY doing her work. She asked A to print it off a week early, as everyone else would do, and A didn't. One week later- A still hadn't printed it off. They lost 8mks (out of 20mks) because of that, and they were bottom of the class.
Apparently, A's like a little puppy following DD around and is making DD's life hell. She can't hang out with her friends because A's there and her friends really hate A, and she can't sit with her best friend on the coach or bus because A always manages to nab it. She is being forced to partner with A for everything and is seeing less and less of her friends. She's also losing friends because people don't like A and don't want to be around A- who's always with DD. She can't tell her that she doesn't like her because that would be cruel, but she's really not enjoying school and losing some of her friends because of her.
Even to me it seems not too hard on DD- but she was actually crying about it, so I think it's more serious than what she describes. And from what she says, A hadn't got any friends in primary school, so I think it's a long-term problem. Help?
I think you really need to have a meeting with DD teacher and explain the situation. You're DD sounds like a very caring person, but unfortunately this matter has not been managed well and is now becoming like a noose round her neck.
The teacher needs to be dealing with girl A, wether that's having talks with her to get to the bottom of the problem in conjunction with her parents and not fobbing her off on your DD for being "nice".
Well I can see the problem - my grd dhtr had a girl a bit like that in primary school. However I do think you have "demonised" A a bit and I'm sure your DD could get away from her if she really wanted to. My DGD is now at sec (all girls school) and there is a girl like this in her form, and DGD tries to talk to her because she feels sorry for her (and I am proud of her for doing that as it shows she cares about others less fortunate than herself) However she doesn't accept invites from this girl but just makes an excuse so as not to hurt her feelings. Neither does this girl prevent my DGD from hanging out with her friends, and if the unpopular girl hangs on to the group they just let it happen from what I can gather.
My son and dil are both primary school teachers and when I used to complain to them about the girl in primary who was preventing DGD playing with other kids etc and being possessive about he, which upset me, my very wise dil said that her child needed to be taught the skills to manage situations like this, as they will come across all sorts of problems through school and later life, and she was so right.
I wonder if you think this worthy of consideration. I do also think you are getting a tad over involved, given the long examples you have given about A and your DD. The friendship groups with girls change a lot (I am told by my dil who teaches Yr 6) they group and re-group. She is always getting parents in asking if A and B can be separated and A is upset because C doesn't like her any more etc etc. She always says it is best to let the girls sort it out for themselves, unless of course there is bullying which is a different matter.
Maybe you could stand back a little.....just a thought.
How are things with your daughter now she's started back at school? I had a similar problem with my daughter, but now they've moved onto comp she sees very little of her.
My daughter got to know a new girl and played a couple of times - age nine. However, she felt she was bit immature, played with babyish things but worst of all she was totalling controlling my daughter and had to do what she wanted so my daughter got nothing out of it. She had the nerve to argue with me and my husband, and a couple of times shouted at me by the school gate over my daughter. She regularly shouted at her and others at school if they didn'tt do what she wanted, and she put pressure on some of them to go to the headmaster and get their friends in trouble. In the end I had a word with the teacher about my daughter being shouted at. Turns out I was the second parent that week to go in, so it's worth raising it with the school!
So two years later, my daughter has lots of lovely friends and the girl concerned really has none. We went out with large group recently and this girl happened to be there - my daughter came back to me on the quiet telling me she was shouting at a six year old who was part of the group. Not a nice girl!!
No she's probably not a nice girl Madmog but she probably doesn't have nice parents either. Behaviour (in all of us) is a product of experience, and children from troubled families, do behave in ways that seem unacceptable. Children aren't born "nasty" - it's the kind of parenting that a child gets that makes them who they are........children who bully at school are usually being bullied at home. "Nice children" are fortunate enough to have parents who given them unconditional love and nurture and care for them - not all children are so lucky............so maybe spare a thought for the girl who is "not nice"
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