My DD has a friendship conflict (scapegoating?)

  • 8 Replies
  • 1406 Views
*

Dinah-sore

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • 789
My DD has a friendship conflict (scapegoating?)
« on: May 25, 2016, 04:17:49 AM »
My daughter is super bright and funny. She has ADHD, but I don't think it has hurt her too much. I see the strengths in her a lot. She is creative and thinks out of the box and is a leader. Occasionally, I can see how it hurts her. She can be impulsive, and butt into conversations, she loves to talk alot, and she shows her emotions on her face--you can read her like a book! Which is great for me as a parent, but it seems to get her in trouble in social situations. She can't be fake. Well, we are working on "medium chill."

Anyways, I recently had a falling out with a friend over my daughter. My friends daughter was picking on my child, and calling her names and making fun of her in a "not funny" way. Like everyone else was laughing, but us. Not normal teasing. She was setting my child up to get in trouble a lot. At first I would just cringe, and think that my kid is embarrassing me again! For example, my kid said "crap" and the family acted like she said a legit cuss word. I talked to her about polite words and how she needs to not say that word again, but the truth is our family doesn't think it is a bad word, so she honestly didn't mean to.

Once this happened this child set out to tell on my child all the time. One time "told" that my kid was acting drunk, but my kid was just pretending she was Ms. Hannigan from Annie. The family was disgusted at her, and she knew it, so she lied and said she wasn't (I knew she was lying and I was furious with her). But when we got in the car to leave she burst into tears admitting her lying. She told me she lied because she knew that my friend doesn't like her, and she didn't want to embarrass me again. That is no excuse. but I must admit that my friend has given her looks of disgust, and she has seen it. I know that affected her when she chose to lie. I dealt with it, and she was punished and I know she learned that it is never okay to lie. Plus, who could get in trouble for pretending to be Ms. Hannigan? It is just Annie!!!

But then I noticed that the child was calling my child "mean" and a "dramaqueen" all the time. Anytime my kid didn't do what they wanted, they would call my kid mean. It is easy to do too, since my kid is naturally more domineering and her child is very girlie and sweet. But it wasn't even in situations that my kid was being mean. Like if my kid was laughing too loud with other loud laughing kids, they would go up to her and call her mean for laughing too loud. If she told her sister to settle down so she wouldn't get in trouble at school, they would call her mean. etc. It was literally ALL THE TIME.

One day we were at the playground and one of my friends children threw dirt at my daughter, I guess my child had accidentally thrown dirt in their direction first. So the child threw dirt directly at my childs clothes. My daughter was upset because it was a new white shirt that her dad had bought her. She chose to come sit down next to me, and told me that she is okay she just is sad. She wanted to sit with me a minute to cool down so she wouldn't say something rude to the kid. She wasn't mad at the kid, just bummed about her shirt. My friend looked at her like she was ridiculous. Like she was literally disgusted with her.

Then her daughter walked by and called her a drama queen. And my friend laughed at her. I thought that was rude. I would never let my kid call her children names and then laugh. Then her daughter kept taunting my dd once she was over it, "What's wrong?" and "Why are you upset?" when she wasn't. I said, she isn't upset anymore, and her daughter responded to me, "yeah, she just wants attention so she goes and sits alone and pouts so we can say, what's wrong? and give her attention" and then she laughed at her. And the mom laughed too.

This got worse and for the next two weeks at school my daughter was continually called a "drama queen" and "mean" by all the members of the family. They even went up to my other child and said they feel sorry for them to have a sister as mean as my dd. It wouldn't stop. So I told my dd to go up to the girl in kindness and ask if she has done anything to hurt her feelings, and then tell her that the names hurt her and ask her to stop. She did, in a nice voice, with full sincerity. The girl looked at her like she was crazy and said, "Sorry you are so sensitive." My daughter was thrilled, thinking it was a real apology! She ate lunch with her, but by the end of school the girl was calling her names again. After school, my friend (the mom) was there and heard her dd calling my dd names, and saw my dd got upset. My dd said to her old friend, "Are you serious? After everything I said this afternoon, are you going to still call me names?" and the little girl did the crazy ear thing in response. And my dd said, "If you keep calling me names I can't be your friend." And she stormed off to find me. Which upset my friend, thinking that my kid was the problem. So I know she is going to get upset and LOOK like the mean drama queen that she is being called.

Then I taught her how to do "medium chill" so she doesn't give the girl any bait. She tried that the next week. But the teasing continued. So I figured I would talk to the mom, since it has been a long time and every thing my dd has tried isn't working. I called and was super positive and wanting to work it out. I know my kid isn't perfect and I was willing to receive constructive criticism. She said my kid can be too emotional, moody, and bossy. My kid is almost 12. Isn't that common for girls? LOL. Not minimizing. I get it. I am sure my kid can be those things. So I owned it and promised to deal with the behavior. But she wouldn't own her kids part. She said, calling my kid mean and a drama queen isn't name calling anyways, and my kid deserves it. And it is a shame that both my kids couldn't have turned out as sweet as my youngest, if only . . . she said  ALL KINDS of other horrible things. I was shocked. I told her it is okay if her daughter doesn't want to be friends with my child, but if she could just stop the name calling. Then she told me she was irritated that I called, that it is ridiculous, kid stuff. Her kid isn't even upset. But I told her that my kid is, that she has been nauseous from the stress, and that she cries at night, and it really is bothering her. I told her that my child prays for them, and wants to know how to change.

I asked her if there was anything in particular that my dd had done that had hurt her family. She couldn't name anything other than being irritated that my daughter sat with me after getting dirt thrown on her. She told me that it is ridiculous that she would pout like that, it is just dirt, we are at the playground, who cares if you get dirty, and my kid threw dirt first. Okay. I get that. But I told her that while you may not like my dd's reaction-- 1) it wasn't hurtful behavior to anyone and 2.) It was actually my dd demonstrating self-control so she wouldn't be rude because she was upset. So you might not like it, but it wasn't really something to be punished for???

I think a lot of it is just a personality preference. Her kids are really girlie and nurturing and quiet and crafty. My dd is a firework. She likes sports and climbing and talkative and passionate and laughing hard and is larger than life. She gets along great with boys. And if she was a boy, her personality would be celebrated, not condemned.

I want to add that my dd stood up for this friend just 6 months ago at school, when other children were calling her weird. My dd told them to stop, that it was mean. And she has never done anything to hurt this child. It has only been accidental rudeness, or thoughtlessness, or going first type stuff. That YES she needs to work on. But nothing mean. In fact this girls new best friend has been in trouble at the school for biting and pushing and major behavior problems--even to this young girl. But my friend is fine with her. My child has never hurt her, or bit her, or pushed her, or screamed at her, called her a mean name or even argued heatedly with her. But this new friend has, and they like her anyways.

So the next day it continued again. And I ran into the mom after school. And she was mad, and we talked. I tried to calm her down. She is really upset with me and my dd. I just wanted the teasing to stop. But she just wanted to tell me that my kid was horrible, and that if she was her daughter she would have never been her friend. And her dd has "had enough." And my kid deserves those names. And that her husband is mad at me for calling them about it. That it is stupid kids stuff. That my kid should never have told her kid "if you don't stop calling me names I can't be your friend." she said, "what kind of kid says that?" and was disgusted. She repeated that she wishes my dd was more like my other child and it is a shame she isn't. It just seemed like really harsh. Am I wrong?

I mean, I am willing to own that my kid isn't perfect. But I know she isn't hurtful. And they didn't even give me an instance of her being hurtful. They just don't like her personality. And those aspects of her personality are common in girls with ADHD-- they talk alot, they interrupt, they are bossy, they can't hide their emotions, etc. It isn't an excuse, but it is an explanation. And she is working on it.

So I talked to my dd about being bossy, and emotional, and moody--and she is so precious. She got big eyes, and OWNED it. She said, "Okay mom, yeah, I know I can be like that. But I am going to work on it. I don't want to hurt people or upset my friends. I am going to work on it really hard." It was so sweet.

But this weekend they were all at a function and again . . . after all this . . . the little girl was still calling her "mean" and literally harassing her. My dd did the medium chill and just calmly said, "no I am not" and walked away.

At this point I think it is scapegoating. Like the family wants to scapegoat my kid. But because the girl is so prissy, she looks perfect, and my kid is so open she can't hide her frustrations. So it works!!!

I need to know what to do. At this point, I am thinking about switching schools. The classes are so small (8 kids) that it is impossible for my dd to avoid the conflict. And even when she ignores them, they follow her and keep it up.

It is sooooo sad. Because I love this family. Can you help me understand if I am making a big deal of nothing, If I am in denial about the situation, or what I should do to help my child learn positive strategies for dealing with conflict. Ugh. I hate all this. I never learned to stand up for myself. But my dd is willing to be assertive, and she has done an excellent job so far. I don't want her to become a people pleaser. She is human and makes mistakes (we all do) but she deserves respect. right? Anyways,  Thank you. <3
"I had to accept the fact that, look, this is who I am. I have to be who I am, and all of us have a right to be who we are. And whenever we submit our will, because our will is a gift, our will is given to us, whenever we submit our will to someone else's opinion a part of us dies." --Lauryn Hill

*

leapsand bounds

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • 271
Re: My DD has a friendship conflict (scapegoating?)
« Reply #1 on: May 25, 2016, 05:03:40 AM »
I want to respond to this. 

To me, this, as you've described it - none of it is okay. Your child is being bullied, not just by another child but by a family.

I'd like to hear others' opinions but I feel you need to step up here and stop being friends with a family that is tormenting your beautiful daughter.  Draw a boundary and stick to it.  Anything else is collusion.

You have said "I never learned to stand up for myself".  Okay, I understand that, but it's time to learn now.  You need to do this for your daughter and maybe you need to do this for you too.  Please don't let your daughter feel that you are the only one who can appreciate her and that she has to put up with being tormented, to be a part of any group.

I hope the moderators will delete this if I am out of line.  You sound like you work hard at being a good person.  Maybe good is broader than you've imagined.

*

Dinah-sore

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • 789
Re: My DD has a friendship conflict (scapegoating?)
« Reply #2 on: May 25, 2016, 05:08:05 AM »
Thank you so much for your response!!!

I was just trying to figure out if it was bullying. It seems more subtle, but just as effective. It makes my dd sick. And my friend makes me sick to my tummy too.

As far as the friendship, that is over. I can love them (from a BIG distance). We won't be hanging out anymore. I can't subject my dd to that. But I am just trying to figure out if I should put my kid in a different school. she goes to a small (SMALL) private school now. Her grade has 8 kids. And the older kids are in Jr. High and the younger kids are nice, but shorter, but nice. But still. It is hard to choose new friends in such a small school. I think a larger school would be a fresh opportunity, and MORE people to choose friends from. You know? Plus, it makes me sad to think that this will continue. That is not healthy.
"I had to accept the fact that, look, this is who I am. I have to be who I am, and all of us have a right to be who we are. And whenever we submit our will, because our will is a gift, our will is given to us, whenever we submit our will to someone else's opinion a part of us dies." --Lauryn Hill

*

leapsand bounds

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • 271
Re: My DD has a friendship conflict (scapegoating?)
« Reply #3 on: May 25, 2016, 05:24:23 AM »
Hi Almond Blossom,

I came back because I wanted to add that you are doing a GREAT job at helping your daughter be sensitive to others' feelings, reflect on her own feelings and behaviours, and learn appropriate self-control.  I wish more parents put as much effort into these things. 

And it sounds too, that your daughter is a real honey.  Isn't it great how working with special challenges can build integrity and character.  She is lucky to have you.  I didn't mean to be harsh.

I don't know have the experience to have an opinion about the pros and cons of different kinds of schools.  Others may have useful advice.

So glad that you have taken action to stand up for your daughter and for yourself.  Keep going with this maybe.....?

*

Dinah-sore

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • 789
Re: My DD has a friendship conflict (scapegoating?)
« Reply #4 on: May 25, 2016, 05:51:01 AM »
Hi Thank you for the encouragement. I didn't think you sounded harsh. I thought you were looking out for my dd's best interest. I may have sounded like I was waffling on that issue. But I think it is hard for me, because on one hand I am really upset about this happening to her. I think it is harmful and serious. On the other hand, I want to make sure that I am not acting like the PD's in my life--how they reject any blame, they just point fingers at other people. I wanted to make sure I am looking at the situation fairly, and owning our part. But I think I am, and even when I own our part, I think it is still really bad for them to call my dd names. Like she doesn't deserve it, even if she isn't perfect and she needs to work on her social skills. I probably sounded confused. I also realize that other kids have much worse bullying situations, and it can become deadly for them. But I think that this mom especially has hurt my kid. I notice my dd acting weird around people now, like she sticks by my side and is ready for someone to not like her for any random reason. That is horrible for her self esteem. It makes me so upset. Anyways, Thank you for your comments. I am up late thinking about it, and it was so nice to have someone to chat with!!!!
"I had to accept the fact that, look, this is who I am. I have to be who I am, and all of us have a right to be who we are. And whenever we submit our will, because our will is a gift, our will is given to us, whenever we submit our will to someone else's opinion a part of us dies." --Lauryn Hill

*

Dinah-sore

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • 789
Re: My DD has a friendship conflict (scapegoating?)
« Reply #5 on: May 25, 2016, 04:04:15 PM »
Does anyone else have any thoughts? or advice?
"I had to accept the fact that, look, this is who I am. I have to be who I am, and all of us have a right to be who we are. And whenever we submit our will, because our will is a gift, our will is given to us, whenever we submit our will to someone else's opinion a part of us dies." --Lauryn Hill

*

Dinah-sore

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • 789
Re: My DD has a friendship conflict (scapegoating?)
« Reply #6 on: May 25, 2016, 04:31:10 PM »
Oh, and I was just reading about scapegoating, "This means their feelings become so intense that what they feel about a person or situation can receive more of their attention or take a higher priority than what they know about that person or situation. This can then lead to distortions in how they interpret a given situation which are then used to rationalize or justify the way they feel and the way they behave as a result."

THIS ^^^ Wow. Another thing I noticed with my friend is that I noticed that there was a lot of "feeling or emotion" that she had toward my dd that was not based on anything she could put her finger on. Like she literally couldn't give me examples of bad things my dd did. Except the pouting incident. It was like her opinion was based in a general "feeling" of dislike or contempt and not facts. Like she couldn't explain why she had such negative feelings for my dd.

Why?

If I think a kid is mean, I can give clear examples-- "They said this" or "They did this" or "I saw this" ---I don't understand just a general dislike. Especially one that is so strong.
"I had to accept the fact that, look, this is who I am. I have to be who I am, and all of us have a right to be who we are. And whenever we submit our will, because our will is a gift, our will is given to us, whenever we submit our will to someone else's opinion a part of us dies." --Lauryn Hill

*

Inurdreams

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • 1505
Re: My DD has a friendship conflict (scapegoating?)
« Reply #7 on: May 26, 2016, 01:08:25 PM »
This is bullying and that other child is learning it from her mother's knee.  I fear this will escalate.  My heart breaks for your daughter.

Have you considered homeschooling?

When my DS was in the third grade there was a kid who for some reason had it out for my child.  DS would come home telling me that he had to hide at recess so that this other child and his toadies wouldn't find him and beat up on him.  DH and I spoke to the school who told us that boys will be boys and they are just kids, etc, etc. and if DS would stand up to these kids they would leave him alone. 

Well, we all know how that would play out.  It would be DS who would end up in trouble, not the bully.

I pulled him out of school during the Christmas break and homeschooled him from then on.  It really isn't that difficult.  Depending on where you live, there are usually lots of resources and social activities designed especially for homeschoolers.  Some local groups are more religious focused while other are more secular.  It just depends on what feels comfortable to you and your child.

It really made a difference in his self esteem.  And no, it won't hurt their chances of going to college.  DS just finished one degree at a local university and is now working on another.  And is an honors student.

Unfortunately public and private schools have become a breeding ground for bullies.  And some parents are bullies themselves so it's no wonder their kids turn out the way they do.

Just my experience.



Peek not through the keyhole lest ye be vexed. - Stephen King


Response to a Flying Monkey:  Apparently you are suffering under the delusion that I give a damn.

*

bopper

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • 1656
Re: My DD has a friendship conflict (scapegoating?)
« Reply #8 on: June 23, 2016, 01:14:52 PM »
I would talk to the guidance counselor at school about this...they can work on the bullying.
Just because they are incapable of loving you, doesn't mean that you are unlovable.
Anything makes the false self appear real is supply.