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Should I get involved (playground issues)

(4 Posts)
Narnia72 Tue 21-Nov-17 09:08:52

My eldest DD (y5) has had a really tough couple of years in the playground, with bullying and exclusion. To be honest, I've been really battered by it, and shocked at how mean young girls and their parents can be. One family has stopped speaking to us completely and now blank us in the playground.

My middle DD (yr3) has told me a few times now (and is quite upset by it) that a girl in her class (E) has started thumping people (her phrase). I know the mum of E and she's very hot on behaviour and discipline, and they are a nice family. Anyway, I asked DD why E did this and she has initially said that she didn't know. Last night she told me that B and F were being really unkind to E, and calling her "fat chicken" all the time and leaving her out. Now E is a child who is on the larger side, but is incredibly active, she swims for a swimming club 3 times a week and does gymnastics. She's obviously prone to putting on weight (as someone who was a fat kid I see this) but the family are really helping her with exercise and good eating. She's also a stocky build, so bigger frame and taller than some of the other girls.

B is the sister of the girl who started the bullying and exclusion for my oldest DD, so I am very aware of the family. The mother is - frankly - a cow, and all about appearances. We really don't like each other, and I had to speak to the school last year about B, as the mother had been calling me "Fat Narnia" to her kids, who had then repeated it to mine, upsetting them. The mother is like a rake and obsessed with weight. B is not fat, but she isn't petite like her mother, and the mother has said in front of me "my big heffalump B".

I feel I am already in the school all the time with my eldest DD, she is still struggling with friendships to the point that we're considering other schools. I am wary of getting involved in any discussions with parents regarding their children, however, I feel very protective towards E, who is a lovely kid, and I know the horror of being teased for being overweight. Her mum is a good friend of mine, but also hates this other mum, and she willl go charging into school if I tell her. I (selfishly) don't want my daughter dragging into it, and then B and F are horrible to her for telling tales.

I'm so sick of the playground antics and the behaviour of children. Everyone thinks their little darlings can do no wrong and, actually, they can be pretty evil when parents aren't watching. Mine included. It really is Lord of the Flies out there.

So AIBU to leave it alone and hope that E tells her mum herself what's happening, or should I speak up in defence of E? And if so, who to? Apologies for the ramble!

TrojansAreSmegheads Tue 21-Nov-17 09:16:12

how would you feel if a good friend knew your child was being bullied and was hurting and sad but chose to not tell you because they would rather avoid conflict than try to make things better for a child?

Narnia72 Tue 21-Nov-17 09:29:23

Yes, Trojans, you're right. I've just been badly burnt by doing what I thought was the "right thing" with regards to my eldest DD, and it causing issues with the parents.

Also, other parents with girls in my eldest DD's class didn't want to get involved, and it really upset me that no-one would be supportive. I guess they felt like I feel now.

Erinsboroughrocks Tue 21-Nov-17 14:43:40

Could you encourage your DD to tell her teacher directly? Maybe send a note with her saying to the teacher that she is a bit worried about something and would like to speak with them. School would have to investigate and also protect her confidentiality.

I can see that you want to do the right thing by your friend but I think you should try to do so in a way that encourages your daughter to speak up. Additionally I think that this approach might be less likely to spark problems for yourself with B's family.

Sorry you feel demoralised by the school playground. Being a parent can be so hard. Well done for trying to support your friend and her child.

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