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How to extract DD from this friendship?(15 Posts)
Long post warning!
This situation with DD (14 and in Y9) is driving me crazy at the moment and some advice would be great.
From about 3/4 through Y7 DD has been best friends with this one girl. Let's call her Sara. They are inseparable, do everything together, but I've never liked/been sure about Sara. She is so possessive of DD and capable of being so disrespectful and rude. Very self entitled too with an incredibly high opinion of herself. Have also heard other mums being very rude about Sara. However have not intervened with DD and Sara.
At the start of this year, the classes were mixed around. DD and Sara are no longer in the same class. In new class, DD makes friends with a girl - I'll call her Alice. DD really likes Alice, despite not spending lunchtimes together they walk between classes with each other and do paired work together.
To cut a long story short, Sara and Alice were very close for the first 3/4 of Y7 but then Alice dared to make some other friends (did nothing wrong as far as I can tell). Sara went crazy, bitched about Alice no end, ditched Alice and left her heartbroken. This is how Sara ended up as 'BFFS' with DD.
Since April Y7 Alice has tried many times to apologise to Sara and nearly 2 years on Sara is still being a bitch to her.
Anyway DD and Alice are becoming good friends and DD would love to start spending more time with Alice, see her out of school etc. But Sara is not having any of it. Anytime DD mentions Alice, says nice things etc, Sara screeches at her and forbids to become close with Alice.
DD is moaning every day about how she can't see Alice and it's driving me crazy because no matter how many times I say that Sara is being silly and she can't stop her from being friendly with Alice etc, DD doesn't listen.
I am desperately trying to encourage a friendship with Alice, met her at Parents Evening and she was a fantastic girl, have heard absolutely lovely things from other mums re Alice. Sara has been such a bad influence on DD.
Sara has zero motivation at school, DD used to work so hard but now her reports are shameful. DD did lots of dance and sport before Sara convinced her it 'ain't cool'. Basically Alice is exactly the friend that DD needs to get her back on track.
Gosh, this is so long. Sorry!
For anyone who has had a daughter in a similar situation/needing to be extracted from a friendship, how did you help? Any tips on how I can persuade DD that Sara just isn't worth it? How can I talk to and advise DD in a helpful and kind manner? I just want DD to be happy, the situation with Sara/Alice is getting her down a lot and I do feel that Sara manipulated her into this friendship. Friendships at this age are so hard and I just feel that DD is being controlled by Sara.
Thank you so much in advance.
Sara might not actually have a high opinion of herself, it could just be teenage bravado. It sounds like she may be insecure and this has led to her behaving in a clingy and controlling way.
I'm a bit that parents have been "very rude" about her too, after all she's still a schoolchild, even if her behaviour isn't ideal.
However, Sara has no right to prevent your DD being friends with Alice, and it's clear why you're concerned about her influence on your DD.
Perhaps talk to your DD about how a real friend treats others, i.e. they don't prevent them seeing other friends, encourage them to stop doing their work and favourite hobbies, or drop someone and refuse to accept an apology.
Also are the school aware, and what is their anti-bullying policy?
I hate the "parents say bad stuff about her" it's so childish and bitchy. DD had a friend like this it changed, your DD will just have to be more assertive. My DD has tendencies to be like Sara and has social communication difficulties , I have been the parent of a child bitched about by other mums it hurts don't do it.
I know how you feel, DD now aged 16 has been in similar situations with friends I'm not that keen on but come through it. I'm sorry to say that at her age, you really can't control who she's friends with. All you can do is talk calmly and sensibly to her (which you're obviously doing already) and let her make the decision. Probably the more you say you don't like this girl, the more likely she'll be to stick with her.
You have to let them make their own mistakes and learn from them and I'm sure it'll work itself out.
Thank you for the replies.
I suppose it will just blow over at some point soon.
DD is very irritable at the moment which is making things worse, gets very snappy when I try to advise her about the Sara/Alice situation.
Any other thoughts welcome
The issue I had is DDs friend -who was like Sara but very controlling and bossy , really she bullied DD- teasing, spread rumours, even snogged her boyfriend ! DD finally got brave and entered a bigger friendship circle but DD has now become Sara in her new group, maybe to prevent it happening to her, who knows. However I'm sure your DD will not follow same path as mine but my DD is drawn to the "cool" people , who are naughty and do risky things. DD now has the most vile boyfriend ever she's followed a pattern and I believe it's about self-esteem and resilience.
I have no advice I'm afraid but like your DD mine gets angry if I mention.
Can you ask her what she'd feel if you forbade her to be friends with a particular person? Presumably she'd be outraged; in which case why does she allow Sara to dictate who she can and can't be friends with? (It'll probably go down like a lead balloon when you say it, but may well sow the seeds for her to think further.)
Aww your poor DD and poor Sara too. Sara is clearly very insecure and unhappy.
I don't think there's much you can do except to sympathise with your DD about how tiresome this situation must be for her and to remind her that Sara obviously has problems.
Does your DD have hobbies outside of school? I'd encourage her to busy herself with groups outside of school.
Hopefully things will sort themselves out as they get older.
My DD is like your "Alice" - it is heartbreaking to see, but there is not a lot we can do other than reassure her that she is lovely & encourage her to make new friends. Her "Sara" is a not nice - her behaviour has been appaling to not just my dd but a number of other people too. I can understand why other parents would bitch about Sara - they are probably at their wits ends trying to support their child through a really intense and prolonged episode of bullying. They need to vent.
When my DD knew a Sara, we had the Alice round for tea. When I gave her a lift home they were discussing Sara's antics. I joined in and pointed out that there were two of them and only one of Sara, and if they both felt the same way why were they allowing Sara all the power - when they actually outnumbered her? They actually seemed like this had never occurred to them! They wanted to know more about standing up to her. Anyway, they did it and everything improved. They were a lot younger, mind (yr 7). I have to say Sara improved too and remained in the friendship group. They just didn't put up with her crap anymore. Safety in numbers. Might be worth a shot.
Your DD will probably sort things out herself though.
I would encourage more with the friend outside of school. Very hard situation though. Does your daughter see this girl as quite controlling? She sounds a bit like that tbh. Your daughter really needs to say I'm friends with you and other friends too. Maybe encourage her to go to lunch time clubs in her own it will hopefully break this tie. Good luck! Hope it works out xx
Why can't your DD see Alice without Sara knowing? Sara sounds very controlling and she probably is insecure and thinks if your DD goes off with Alice then she wont be her friend anymore. Peebles gives great advice though, although it sounds like Sara and Alice wont be friends any time soon. Not much you can do to really influence friendships at this stage, although you can enourage your DD to invite Alice round.
I think you need to empower your daughter to say that she will be friends with whoever she likes. Why should Alice be treated as second best? By only speaking to Alice when Sara isnt around your dd is behaving badly, she needs to be a better friend.
Think of it as an abusive relationship that your dd needs to leave. She will do when she is ready. You need to build her confidence so that she believes life will be good without Sara.
I think it is best not to get involved, at this age. Time for your daughter to learn how to handle this kind of situation by herself.
I cannot imagine getting involved in my Y8 child's friendship issues.
Be there for her to talk of she wants to talk, that's all you can do.
If my dd had a boyfriend who was behaving in this way towards my dd then I'd be talking to her about it and involving myself. I once got myself into a controlling 'friendship' as an adult and I found it really hard to get myself out of it. That's part of the control. They wear you down and make you feel bad about yourself.