Thursday, February 24, 2011

Oh boy, I wasn't looking forward to this part of parenting a daughter

My daughter is nine and in fourth grade.  We've been protective of her in regards to what entertainment and situations she's exposed to and this has made her a little immature for her age.  She's really comfortable with younger kids and they're comfy with her. 

Now that it's fourth grade, some of the girls are starting to get their mean girl shoes on.  A couple have asked Zoe if she likes Elmo and tell her Elmo is for babies.  It makes her feel crappy and she's talked to her dad about it a little bit.

It's not bullying exactly, bullying involves phyicality where girls wage psychological war.  The term "Mean Girls" is a good one. 

I'm distressed, but there isn't much I can do about it except coach her in what to say back to them, like "Well, don't watch Elmo then."  or "Yeah?  And?". If they continue to say that she's a baby for liking Elmo she should reply "Yah, and?" or "You said that already.". 

Sadly, it's part of being a girl growing up around other girls.  At some point in our female lives claws grow and we wander around yowling and spitting.  It's really hard to explain how very nasty teenage girls can be.  Stephen King did an excellent job of it in the book Carrie.  Every woman I know who read that agrees that, yeah, we could be that bad. 

I've been dreading this phase.  Schools now have a much stricter rules in regards to bullying of the physical and emotional kind.  But, someone has to tattle, which sucks. 

I'm not about to let her watch Freddy and Jason or Saw and Hostel, but I will let her like Katy Perry and Lady Gaga and Miley Cyrus.  Questionable role models?  Yes.  But so was Madonna and Donna Summer and Diana Ross and The Ronettes. 

It's inevitable that she's going to grow up, but unless I keep her in the house like Rapunzel, I can't keep her from having to deal with meanies. 

Soon, I'll start leaving tissue boxes in her room for weeping purposes.


Amanda's beauty tip of the day:  Glittery make up is for evening only!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

As much as I hate kids being hurt emotionally, at some point we as human beings need to learn how to handle bad things - especially while there is someone (a parent or a peer) around to provide the kind of support that might not be available if we don't encounter it until we reach adulthood.

We tread a fine line between what is damaging and what is opportunity to grow. By being supportive and keeping an ear (and eye) on things, you are in a position to help Zoe get something useful out of the learning experience (and to step in if it goes beyond that).