exclusion - FamilyEducation
07/03/2007 at 11:02 AM

I have a 9 year old daughter who is being excluded by the three neighborhood girls.  They are ages 11, 11, 12.  They are mean to her when they do allow her to play and have recently had a pool party at one girls house and invited classmates as well as the neighbor girls.  All was invited but my daughter.  The mother has no problem with this and seems to actually encourage this behavior from her child.  We have had multiple talks through the years regarding her daughters behavior toward mine, but she sees no problem.  I have confronted the girls personally and now they tell my daughter it is my fault they do not play with her and are mean to her. So, I have stayed out of my daughters life for the past three years, and still they continue to exclude her.  They come by the house, sit in front of the house, invite her to play, and then are mean to her.  Other parents do not care.  They are the only girls on the block, and my daughter would like to belong. ANY SUGGESTIONS?  I feel hurt for my daughter and guilt for interferring in the first place.  Thank you

Hi Zelda,

I know how you feel, my daughter was often excluded by some of her peers too and it hurt me more than it hurt her. I used to hate seeing her being left out but then I thought about it and really I didn't want her to play with girls like that anyway. When you think about it are they really the kind of friends you would chose for your daughter, you wouldn't really want that type of behaviour to rub off on her, would you?


I had a good chat with my daughter and pointed out that really she was better off without these kids and so the next time they asked her to play she just said 'no thanks'. Then they really wanted her to play and were a bit surprised when she no longer went with them to be their bullying victim.


I got my daughter involved in a few activities in our local library and she made some new friends from other streets and has never looked back.


Don't let these girls affect your relationship with your daughter for even one more day, these girls will grow up and move away but your daughter will always have you. Start doing things with your daughter without making an issue of it, just sit and have doughnuts together or ask her to do your nails, just enjoy each others company without forcing any discussions and see what happens.


Mum of 3



Its really heartbreaking, isn't it?

All I would suggest is talk frankly with your daughter about how you think those girls are lacking basic manners and its more a bad reflection on them then on her, and then don't let them come over.  Help her get to friends that are a little farther away. Or, if you are not shy, do what my friend does. She lets her daughter's friends know directly how she feels about their manners. (Her daughter got used to it over the years.)  She figures they need to hear it from someone. She always has a good point to make and because she has a really thick, sweet southern accent, it somehow doesn't sound rude when she corrects them. If she scares them away, she figures that turned out the best for her daughter anyway. Her daughter has impeccable manners, of course.

We had to do something similar in our neighborhood, but for a different reason. We found out two of the boys that lived within walking distance of us were into drugs in middle school (rich kids with too much money). Even though my son had been tight with them since first grade, we had to explain it to him and tell him he was not to hang out with them at all anywhere, anytime. It broke our hearts because the one boy was at our house every day, and we also really liked his family. But, my son listened. Eventually that young man had to spend time in the local juvenile detention center, so my son was doubly glad he had listened to us. I still feel really bad for his family.


i agree with the others ,   i also think that there is some jealousy issues with the mom towards you . and maybie the mom is saying stuff in front of them .   kids learn what they hear from their parents .


I too, have seen the pain on my daughter's face when this happens. We were in a store and she saw a classmate. Excitedly, she raced up to say hello - and the girl actually hid behind her dad to avoid my daughter. It happened again at the mall another time! My daughter, who is sensitive, was crushed.


I talked with her and explained there are levels to people. Green means they are freindly and open. Yellow means they may be perfectly nice, yet they may also be a little closed (due to shyness or something else too). Red is closed, or they are not worth getting upset over.


She still gets upset, yet it is by far less, and she even uses the colors. Perhaps in time, the girls will change. If not, help your daughter to find better people to be friends with. Encourage her to do things that make her feel good about herself, even martial arts which can give her plenty of confidence and strength!


When she does make new friends, be sure to invite them over. This will help her know she is perfectly fine and the problem is with the other girls. Encourage her to be a good citizen and take the priority off getting to be friends with the girls.


Oh, and if they do come over, tell them they are not welcome. Send them home with a stern voice. If someone says something, tell them you feel the girls are a threat to your daughter and you will not tolerate this. Gte tough with them. Your daughter will see this and get teh message too.


Good luck!