Friday, May 20, 2011
Girls are not all sugar and spice
Girls can be mean. Everyone knows this. What still shocks me is how mean they can be and how early they start. They are stealth, blatant, manipulative, obvious, sneaky and passive-aggressive about it. How do they develop this sophisticated and twisted sense of emotional warfare? Who is teaches this stuff to them? Sara has tried to be friends with a girl for the last 2 years. On paper, they are two peas in a pod - very smart, articulate, book lovers, and highly imaginative. When Sara discovered this girl had read the first Harry Potter book she begged us to let her read it so they could talk about it. This girl wants nothing to do with my daughter. She has no qualms making this clear in every way imaginable. Sara is excluded from any group she is involved in at recess, during lunch, on the bus, etc. Any friendly overtures made by Sara are swiftly, adamantly and rudely rebuffed. She even had her parents call us to ask Sara to "not try to be friendly anymore because it bothers their child." I wish I was making up the last part. I have the voicemail to prove it. Some may call me overprotective but I have never called a parent to ask their child to stop being friendly. How were they not embarrassed to make that call? If my kid was bullying their kid, I could understand receiving a call. But being friendly? Explain to me how I am supposed to instruct my daughter to stop being nice to someone? Should I tell her to start bullying this girl instead?
A more philosophical mother would use this as a "learning opportunity and teachable moment". I know I should use this experience to teach her that no matter how hard you try, not everyone is going to like you. Throughout your life, you will have to learn to co-exist with these people. I've told Sara to remain polite and respectful towards this girl but maintain a discreet distance. My heart breaks for my daughter. It drives her crazy that no matter how hard she tries, no matter how she reaches out, this little girl does not want to be friends. Well, it is that girl's loss because my daughter is an amazing, wonderful, sweet , funny and loving kid.