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My poor little dd1 came home all sad - should I resist the temptation to phone/speak to her mum?

(33 Posts)
Carla Tue 24-May-05 17:59:56

Basically, she was all pensive in the car on the way back from school. Asked what was wrong - 'nothing'. When we got home she said 'I hate Ixxx'.. I asked why.

Apparently this child had told two children that 'A was fat because she keeps eating cows'. I asked why cows. 'Because they're big, mummy, and it went round the whole class'.

A is the biggest in her class, but I think at 6 this ought to be nipped in the bud. Or do you think that making an issue of it will make it worse? After all, if one child can say it, so can another. I'm distraught for her. I spent my whole childhood as a fat child, ostracised, and I don't want the same for her.

Please let me know what you think - she's such a lovely, loving girl.

BTW, she hardly eats anything - her younger sister eats far more, so I'm sure it's not anything I'm doing wrong.

TIAX

starlover Tue 24-May-05 18:01:29

I would resist temptation to phone the child's mother... however I would certainly speak to the teacher.

is she overweight? if she doesn't eat much but is still putting on weight have you spoken to the GP about it?

Tessiebear Tue 24-May-05 18:03:45

Go and see her teacher and get her to have a word with the "bullys" involved. I think teachers take things like this v. seriously.
I personally NEVER get involved with talking to the parents of the child involved and i always go throught the class teacher. If she has to have a word with the parent then so be it. This recently happened to a friend of mines little girl and this is what she did.

Spacecadet Tue 24-May-05 18:03:47

carla sorry to hear this, when you say big, how big do you mean?? if thats not a stupid question, if shes just a bit chubby she will prob grow out of it but if she isvery overweight, then yes you do need to address the prob, but in a way that doesnt make too much of an issue, you dont want her going the other way.

Distel Tue 24-May-05 18:04:05

Ifeel so sorry for her, Iwas also a large child although never bullied. I think I would approach the teacher and explain, maybe she can do something - speak to the mother perhaps.

Spacecadet Tue 24-May-05 18:04:54

as far as the bully's are concerned, speak to the teacher and go to the headteacher if you have to, dont contact the parents, bullying is bullying at the end of the day.

Carla Tue 24-May-05 18:22:42

It just sounded because of this one girl's comment that got passed on, the whole class were against her. What can the class teacher do about that, I wonder if mentioning it to her will exacerbate the situation. Yes, she certainly is the biggest in her class - what would a GP suggest? A dietician? Think that would throw her the other way, but to be honest I think this sort of stuff would, too.

Carla Tue 24-May-05 18:23:59

And the poor little mite had just finished her maths SATS. I just thank God it didn't happen just before.

PuffTheMagicDragon Tue 24-May-05 18:31:26

Carla, do speak to the teacher. I would always want to know if this kind of behaviour was going on in my class (if I hadn't already noticed it), so it can be dealt with. I think it's more likely to heighten the problem by not mentioning it.

FIMAC1 Tue 24-May-05 18:31:42

The Doctor may recommend you see a Dietician (my ds has seen one at the hospital over a anemia problem) and it was fine, non-stressy and she was lovely. They would be able to tell you whether or not she does actually have a prob (or not) which would put both your minds at rest. Kids are so cruel aren't they?

triceratops Tue 24-May-05 18:33:40

Is there any physical activity she likes doing? Dancing or swimming or simply walking to school can drastically help. I agree that it is wrong to put a six year old on a diet but it is not only physical health that can be damaged by being overweight. I was a tubby child and it made me miserable. If she started a club or activity that she enjoyed it may increase her confidence as well which will make her less of a target for bullys.

Carla Tue 24-May-05 18:47:15

She used to love cycling to school with H, but since dd2 started in September, and she's still on stabilisers, it's become impossible.

If I thought a dietician could help .... I know what she's eating isn't fantastic - dietary wise- but it shouldn't make her overweight.

Just spoken to my Mum, and she said see the teacher, rather than the mum, too. Don't want to imagine a scenario where the teacher gives a lecture to the class telling them it's wrong to call people fat - can just imagine dd knowing exactly that she's being targeted.

Carla Tue 24-May-05 18:49:13

And the other thing is that some of the instigators seem to have been her best friends. One child tells another, sniggers, etc. etc.

marthamoo Tue 24-May-05 18:57:10

I think (hope) the teacher would be more subtle than that. When my friend's dd was being bullied in a similar way (at the same age, actually, what is it with 6 year old girls?) the teacher did give a class talk, but non-specific to my friend's dd. She was in a similar situation - where one child was the ringleader, and turned all the other girls in the class against her ("if you talk to her then I won't be your friend.") The teacher talked to the class in a general way about kindness to others, imagining how you would feel if others were mean to you, putting yourself in someone else's shoes, and general bullying issues. It worked - because she played on the guilt of the other 6 year old girls - they're still pretty malleable at that age.

I would talk to the teacher as my priority too. Rotten kids - poor dd.

Caligula Tue 24-May-05 18:58:05

Carla, I think the teacher will probably deal with it more subtly than you fear. I think it always better to let the school deal with this kind of bullying, if they're any good they'll have an effective anti-bullying procedure in place which won't highlight the victim of bullying. Dealing with it outside the school, imo, is only for when the school has failed to deal with it.

My DS had a bit of mild bullying about six months ago and I told his form teacher. She simply dealt with it by speaking to the bully direct and telling him she was keeping an eye on him. Whatever technique she used was extremely effective, because my DS has invited this child to his birthday party - and he took another child off his list to do so, so they must be getting on pretty well now.

Spacecadet Wed 25-May-05 09:01:26

carla. the teacherswould not speak to the whole class in theway you fear, dont panic, go to the school asap and get the bullying addressed, if she is big, then have a word with the school nurse, the doctors surgery will tell you how to get hold of her, they are good for giving nitrition advice etc, if she is overweight , it does need to be dealt with before she gets older, but it can be dealt with in a subtle way so that dd doesnt get obssessed with it and go the other way, i can understand your concerns re that., there should never be any mention of the word, diet.

batters Wed 25-May-05 10:07:00

oh carla .

I would do three things. Firstly tell my dd that she is gorgeous and beautiful and that people who call other people names are quite often sad and unhappy. Also tell your dd to go to the teacher next time this happens. Lastly I would have a word with the teacher, and explain how upset your dd is. If she is a good teacher she will know how to deal with it and will do so very quickly.

I know that this might be any comfort to you at the moment but IME the children who are verbally nasty to other kids are quite often sad and insecure in someway.

chipmonkey Wed 25-May-05 14:25:44

Carla, teachers can be very good with dealing with this sort of thing. We had an incident where 2 boys were accosting ds1 on the way into school, (he's 8, they're 10) and she dealt with it very effectively, the boys apologised to ds1 and haven't come near him since. If they know someones on to them they behave better. I think a dietician would be a good idea in that if your dd is gaining weight and her diet is not to blame, then she could be referred to see whether there is an underlying medical problem which could be dealt with.

pinkmama Wed 25-May-05 14:31:33

Hi Carla
I had a problem with dd at school, I talked to teacher, and think she very sensitively handled it by talking in general during 'circle time' about friendships. I definately think teacher rather than parent is the way to go.

Twiglett Wed 25-May-05 14:39:36

talk to the teacher and get her to have a word with whole class about bullying

Spacecadet Wed 25-May-05 15:09:18

hi carla, have you spoken to the school yet.

ScummyMummy Wed 25-May-05 15:20:15

Oh no. Poor dd and you Carla. I hope you've managed to have a word with the teacher and sort this out.

Re: diets- I'm very anti making a direct issue of this with young girls, personally. I think it can easily cause lifelong and unhealthy obsessions with body image. I think the best thing to do is, as batters says , continue to accept her for the beautiful little girl I'm sure she is and monitor the whole family's diet. Lots of active playing as a whole family- walks, swimming, bikes etc are great too.

motherinferior Wed 25-May-05 15:23:56

As ever, I think Scummy's hit the nail on the head. Diets are just such a horrible minefield.

Janh Wed 25-May-05 15:31:29

Unfortunately though, these other girls are already well into the body image obsession from the sound of it.

What is going to be worse for Carla's little girl - staying bigger than the others, and being teased and excluded (I know that's awful and it shouldn't happen and should be dealt with, but also know that in the real world it will go on, especially now they know it hits home) - or looking at her diet and exercise habits and making a few changes, so she can be fitter and slimmer?

soapbox Wed 25-May-05 15:36:07

Carla - my DD is 6 as well and we have recently bought a trampoline which she bounces on from morn to night!

She's a skinny child anyway so has been eating masses and masses more food to make enough energy to bounce away!

Could you buy one - do you have a garden. It may well mean that she could slim down a bit without having to drastically alter her diet.

You say that her diet is not good - can you start making little adjustments so that she eats more healthily - it will be much better for her in the longer run.

I agree with the mojority of other posters though, that any changes should be subtle so that she is not aware that you are monitoring her food input/energy output. Six is obscenely young to be worried about body sizes, weight and dieting!

And agree also to talk to the school re bullying aspect of this!

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