To really hate this schoolgate mummy mafia(31 Posts)
Can any of you lovely ladies give me a perspective on this and tell me AIBU? Sorry if this is long, I would really value some outside opinions on this..
The background to this is that my DP and I moved to a semi rural area over 10 years ago in a different part of the country to where our friends and family were . We came because of work, we both have jobs in a city nearby in our respective professional areas. Fast forward to present and we are still living here together with our 2 DDs. One still at primary school and eldest now at secondary. Due to working full time we used a childminder a lot for school pick ups, etc. As a result, never really got to know many of the other mums very well, mainly because I am hardly ever at the school, thought I do know one or two to say hello to type of thing and always do smile and say hello if possible. Around here a lot of the mums are locals who have gone to school together, grown up together, have big extended family networks that sort of thing, so I do quite often feel like a fish out of water however do the best I can within the situation. Anyway, my eldest daughter is doing really well at high school, has a big group of friends now however when she was at primary often wasn't asked to things, due in no small part to the mummy mafia - there was at one point a girl my eldest DD wanted to be friends with and the mum said that her daughter was not allowed to be friends with my eldest DD because she wasn't on the "list" approved children for her daughter to play with, unbelievable I know but I let it go as my eldest had lots of other friends and I never confronted that mum (I didn't even know her TBH)
The situation that we have now is with my youngest DD who is still at primary school. Youngest is very different to eldest, quiet and shy and has Tourette Syndrome which is quite mild but means that she does have tics in school which can upset and embarrass her. School are on board with the Tourettes and have been great and DD does have a couple of friends that she sees outside school, however the girl that she describes as her "best friend" for many years, she has never been able to see outside of school because her mum won't allow it. I have asked the other girl to tea/play after school and this has always been declined and never any invite back. Then today my DD said that she was sad that she could never see her friend outside of school and that her friend has told her that the reason for this was because her mother had said that my DD was a "bad friend". This has made me totally furious for my poor DD who is a lovely, well behaved girl who happens to have a condition that she can't control. The other mother does not even know my daughter or our family, I had made the invites to tea etc through sending notes passed on through school. I do know that the other mum is one of the "local gang of mums" type though, she is close friends with one of my neighbours.
So should I confront the other parent and say something or just leave it? Will it make things worse if I do? I am a very peace loving person by nature but will say something if necessary, or will it just make things worse?...
Confronting the parent will do nothing other than make you the topic of gossip and jokes etc. It isn't going to get your dd an invite or make the mum change her behaviour.
The best thing to do would be to try and play it down to your dd and accept this girl will just be an in school friend.
Well, this sounds like two strange mothers rather than a "mummy mafia". You haven't described group-type behaviour, just two mothers who have apparently banned their kids from seeing yours. That is pretty shitty behaviour, but I guess you just have to encourage your kids to be good friends and they'll work it out. Have you ever spoken to your DD's best friend's mum? It might be worth approaching her individually to ask her DD over for tea. Have a serious conversation about her concerns, just in case she has heard unfair rumours. I wouldn't "confront" as there might have been crossed wires (either her or your DD may have misunderstood or be misreporting matters).
If she's never met you and only received notes in her daughters book bag I can see why the mum might not be that keen on a play date.
If you want the girls to see each other you need to try to arrange a face to face conversation with the mother I think.
Ypu need to be way more proactive. We moved to a new area we had to do the running, we had people round for bbqs, coffee and cake, Xmas parties etc etc. we now have a lovely group of friends. Invite the whole family over if th child can't come in their own.
And two parents are not a mummy Mafia! I wouldn't let my child go to someone's home I had never met without me!
Also commend brownies for your daughter, speak to other parents re lift shares etc
Thanks for your reply, should have explained that I have met the other mum briefly at things like children's parties but don't know her very well, that's why had sent the invites via school as didn't have a number for her.
It is very sad for your poor dd, those mothers are awful, some have never left the school playground themselves. I agree, it will do you no favours to confront them. Does your dd do any clubs or societies outside the community?
Is sending an invite via the school an odd thing to do if you are working full time and not at the school to speak with other parents? The children are age 9 BTW.
I wouldn't confront her or pursue this friendship on behalf of your DD. Better to encourage out of school activities, pal up with neighbours DCs and cousins if you have them to make school less of a big deal.
It all means diddly squat when they get to secondary anyway.
Well, you're relying on a second hand report from two primary school children that this mother actually said your dd is a "bad friend". It seems very unlikely.
Some parents don't want to get involved with their kids socialising outside of school ... could she be like that? We had a thread on here just the other day where a surprising number of posters contributed saying that they just didn't enjoy doing the whole "come back to mine after school" thing.
I wouldn't leave my 9 yo going to someone's house without me, at least the first time.
I don't know you, even if I had briefly waved at a party or other, I don't know your partner, I don't know anything about you, your dogs, your house. Around here, we normally arrange for a family gathering first, even if it's just a cup of tea after school, before organising anything else. If a mum is at work, and can't meet, it means that she won't be home to supervise the children anyway, so it's a no.
Nothing about mafia, it's about my child safety.
Thanks for all replies, I agree with Bobbit that some parents just don't want to get involved and also if you have a group of friends already with kids similar age it will be easier to just keep to friendships within the group, however it's a shame for the kids that don't have that.
We don't have any family in this area, work out of the area. My daughter has had a few invites to things but ALL of those have generated from other families who are not local to the area like ourselves.
Brownies is a good idea, she is on the waiting list for that...
My thoughts were also that it's best to just leave it with the other parent and not confront, just wondered if I was being unassertive
Roll on secondary school...
I wish for your daughter a Julia Roberts "big mistake" moment. She sounds lovely and deserves lovely friends. I would try a weekend family invite if you can rise above what appears to be horrible behavior. Perhaps its a misunderstanding.
i hacve never done play dates and that sort of thing outside of school. if my kids happen to get a party invite then yes they can go. but i dont make a big deal about meeting out of school etc then there are no expectations. as said in the thread once at secondry school theses play date type things dont happen. and kids will choose who they want to see outside of school. and the parents have less say. including them judgementle mothers...
You don't know that she actually said that about being a bad friend, don't listen to what one child says another child says her mum said etc.
If the mum is pals with your neighbour that is your route in, invite neighbour plus mum and daughter to yours. I think you need to get to know the mum a it before she will let her child come to yours really. Invite her and the daughter. 'Next time you are round at neighbours, do both pop over for a cuppa, dd would love to play with your daughter '.
I can't see that you can win her over.
I have arrange a 'play date' through a text, normally.
Sounds like you have come up against at least one but possibly 2 social climbers there OP.
The first was definitely only allowing friendships with people who would improve her social standing going by the 'approved list'
Alternatively they could just be a couple of mums who don't care for socializing outside of school.
Ignore and once in secondary she will gain her own circle of friends independent of other parents views.
Get her phone number from neighbour and invite her round for a cup of tea after school one day, with daughter (and any siblings).
This reminds me so much of my own DS experience in junior school. There is no point in confronting. It will just give them something to talk about.
Thinking of them as a mafia, probably does not help. If they have all grown up together, they know who they can trust to look after their child. They don't know you, and so may not want their child to go to yours.
It's really hard and very unwelcoming of these mothers - you feel you child's pain!! Does this friend go to any clubs? Could DD meet there?
Don't confront, it won't do you any good!! Could you mention something to the neighbour? Just to get a feel on the situation?
I'm sort of in your situation but I have a different approach to it.
If you are not from the area, and you work full time, and you haven't made any efforts,
Then this isn't mummy mafia, don't be ridiculous.
This is people who don't know you, feeling they have enough friends, it's easy for their children to hang out with the children of their friends.
Stop feeling sorry for yourself and accept that the situation is of your making.
For years I have been organising term nights out, to compensate for the fact that I am new to the area, and work full time.
If I didn't make a huge effort them noone would know me, and thus wouldn't include my children.
It's perfectly understandable.
Women are adult humans.
Not mummy mafia.
i agree with some of the others there really is no point in confronting. the mum cant stop the friends from playing at school. explain to you dd that they spend lots of time at school together and see each other every day on a school day. on play dates it sometimes means the child comes into contact with the friends parent... i would not want my child near a parent like that... once the children are at secondry the parents cant choose their friends for them.
> Stop feeling sorry for yourself and accept that the situation is of your making.
I think that's rather harsh quicklydecides. The OP has made an effort to invite people. Saying that someone is not on the "list" of friends or calling someone a "bad friend" seems very unnecessary.
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