Today I was going to post how I felt about the gun control controversy, but I can’t get my brain to think about anything else besides female bullying. Right now, it is consuming my life because I am confronting the school administration, my daughter’s teacher, the bully, and the mother of the bully. Here’s what I’ve learned so far about bullying:
- Girls bully other girls by trying to socially isolate them from their peers. They do this by telling lies about the victim, vacillating between kindness/meanness, passing hateful notes about the victim to other girls, facial expressions that express their displeasure to the victim, and other subversive behavior that is destructive to the victim and hard to identify by adults.
- The problem with this form of bullying is that most adults and people in authority pass the behavior off as “girls being girls”. However, it is considered bullying because the Queen Bee damages what the victim, and all girls need the most–relationships with other girls, which in turn harms the victim emotionally and mentally. (Because of her emotional distress, my daughter is experiencing stomach pains right before lunch, recess, and the bus ride to school and home.)
- The worse possible thing an adult can do to the victim is continue to isolate the victim by telling her to make other friends. Of course, this is what the teacher and I told my daughter to do.
- One of the best ways to help your daughter is by expressing empathy. (Just for the record, I did this too. So, I got part of it right.)
I’ve learned other things as well, but they would take an entire blog post and I don’t think they are extremely relevant. However, I’m still on this discovery journey and I would love to hear suggestions about how to empower the victim and how to get the bullying to stop.