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Feel like female friends are so competitive they would be happy my child has SEND

(14 Posts)
alfieum Tue 06-Oct-20 10:40:29

In my 20's I had good friends, we were really there for each other and I think happy for each other doing well, sad if things didn't work out.

As I have got older I have noticed people are so competitive. I am having some problems at the moment with my DD being diagnosed with possible ASD, and the thought of talking to even my closest friends makes me feel sad. I feel like they would be happy to hear that she is having issues. There is so much competition around children's attainment and things like that.

DD has a very sweet nature and is friendly and a little idiosyncratic and in her own world. I have had people make snide remarks about her to me and compare how well there children are doing in contrast to her. She is a very bright girl but you would only know it if you were very close to her and saw her relaxed in herself.

The whole mum friendship group is a very competitive one, with lots of one competition about holidays, second houses etc. I feel like children are just another level of this to people and it put's me off sharing my worries.

I wonder if anyone else has felt the same. I am pulling away from people as I find it all so distasteful, but at the same time, really would like someone to talk to about my worries for her and how this is affecting her at school.

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lighthouseinthesnow Tue 06-Oct-20 10:50:57

OP that is so sad. I do have some friends like this so I can understand what you mean.

Do you have any friends at all who you feel are more open minded and less competitive? If so I would try and get closer to them and distance myself from the others.

I've always found friendships quite tricky when the only thing we had in common was the children. The more supportive and longer lasting friendships tend to be where we have other shared interests.

Stonecrop Tue 06-Oct-20 10:55:29

I have found this as I have got older but for different reasons. I think you just become more private about things once you get married and have children as not everything is your own secret to tell any more. I feel like my school day friendships were/are still so much more bonded than my more recent friendships as we we told each other everything when we were younger

LaBellina Tue 06-Oct-20 10:55:39

Those are not friends, they are frenemies.

I also have a 'friend' like that and this behavior is annoying and exhausting. Ofteh they do it to make themselves feel better as they are very insecure about themselves.

Personally I have stopped to share anything too personal with her and found myself some lovely supporting (mum) friends because they sure also do exist.

JustStuck Tue 06-Oct-20 12:28:36

That's so sad, one of the reasons I'm a private person as I don't have the energy for such matters.
They aren't really friends if you cant call in your hour of need. Have you thought about discussing it with her teachers ? Even with non judgemental family, if you just need a sounding board.

All the best x

ComicePear Tue 06-Oct-20 12:33:28

I have come across some competitive parenting since becoming a mum (eldest DC is 14 now), but I'm genuinely shocked at the idea that your friends would be happy to hear that your DC may have SEN. Are you sure? Could it be that you're reading a bit too much into some slightly insensitive comments about how well their own DC are doing?

Honestly, someone who is happy that your DC is struggling is not a friend.

LaBellina Tue 06-Oct-20 13:31:09

OP, just an idea. Why dont you open a thread here along the lines of : non competitive parenting: helping each other out.

MN-er can help each other with childcare related matters that you're too afraid to discuss with your frenemy mum friends. I'm sure we all have them grin

Smelborp Tue 06-Oct-20 14:14:09

In your shoes, I might try and confide in them anyway. Mainly because if they really are pleased that your DD could be SEN to make them feel better a put themselves, then it would be good to know that now so you can cut them off. That truly would be obnoxious though.

LadyWithTheNeonSparklers Tue 06-Oct-20 14:24:52

I wonder if anyone else has felt the same.

I did when my children were much slower to pick up reading and other school things than my then circles children. our children got there and do quite well in school now.

I got sick of the faux concern and unhelpful unasked for often patronising advice about something they clearly knew little about themsleves.

I was very greatful to MN - especially primay boards and the teachers and others parents who did know what they were talking about and who's tips and advice made a huge helpful difference to us.

alfieum Tue 06-Oct-20 14:46:51

Thank you all. I think I will start a thread on the SEN boards here.

I thought a lot this weekend if I was imagining it and then had a conversation with one of the women I get on better with. I said about the school underestimating DD and sending home a target of helping her know her ABC (which she has known for 3 years) and she said something like "well that is one thing she can do" in a really snide way. She then got out her daughter spellings and made a big deal of the long words she is doing and then told me how popular her daughter is and how many play dates they have. I recently told her my dd is never invited anywhere. Writing that down I can see how bat shit the other mum's reaction is hmm

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billy1966 Tue 06-Oct-20 15:13:28

Dear Lord OP, only a complete raving bitch would respond like that.

Back away from confiding in women like that, they are poisonous.

Real friends no more behave like that.

Basic decency would prevent most people from behaving like that.

Posting concerns on here is a lot safer.
Perhaps seeing are their any local FB groups to you might also be halpful.

Parents going through the same issues are invaluable.

ItsMyIssue Tue 06-Oct-20 15:17:02

I feel exactly the same. I have a SEN child and
a group of Mum friends from school who are competitive. It’s tiresome. As well as the holidays, house renovations etc.. it’s also all about how many after school clubs the children go to, sports they do, musical instruments they are learning, the ‘right’ bike or scooter to have, the reading level they are on.... Its almost like they have an imaginative tick list that you need to complete in order to show that you are a great parent. To be honest I am quite private and now share even less. I just do what’s right for my family and try not to let it bother me, but it does creep in.

WaterAndTheWild Tue 06-Oct-20 15:26:04

I have had people make snide remarks about her to me and compare how well there children are doing in contrast to her

Fuck. That.

alfieum Tue 06-Oct-20 15:32:40

I think as DD has become noticeably a little different and the kids can be ranked by school then it has got worse.

Thank you for the kind messages and tips and sorry to others who have gone through this. There are a lot of crazy competitive people.
ItsmyIssue - Yes that is it exactly

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