Mean girls sadly are nothing new and I feel like they are digging their claws in at younger and younger ages.
The other morning I am getting ready for work and I look at my bathroom mirror and notice a message:
“You are awesome
You are strong
Don’t let them get to you, be strong”
I winced and finished getting ready for work. I share a bathroom with my 11 year old daughter. I certainly didn’t write that on the bathroom mirror. Truth be told I can barely reach that high.
I made a mental note to talk to her about it.
G has been dealing with them for a few years now, but now that she is in middle school it seems much more hurtful. There’s intent to harm. I wish I didn’t understand but I have been dealing with mean girls since forever.
I could give you the examples but then I’m just continuing to give them power. At the end of the day that’s what this is ALWAYS about when someone hurts you.
On our weekly drive back from her Dad’s I asked my daughter what was going on.
There is a girl in her class who just simply doesn’t like her. She’s pretty sure all paths lead to a boy she likes. Geez, doesn’t it ALWAYS?! Not really, but man…
She said this girl always makes sassy comments towards her and in front of others and essentially bosses her around.
I asked her what she does in turn. Nothing she tells me. I just keep quiet or do it.
What I tell you all next may cause some of you to scold me.
I said “don’t do that.”
“Don’t do that G. What do you want to do?”
“I want to scream at her and call her names. Can I swear?”
“No and definitely don’t do any of that. She wins. She wants to be in charge.”
“Then what do I Mom?”
“This stuff she’s telling you not to do, are the teachers ok with what you’re doing?”
“Well, f#*# her then.”
“The next time she says anything. Calmly look at her and say the teacher is fine with what I’m doing why aren’t you? Can you do that?”
Flash forward to this morning and I notice on G’s wrist a heart with the words: live, laugh, love, be you.
“Baby, is that girl still being mean to you?”
“She gave me a hard time in class yesterday…”
“And I asked her “didn’t she have a project to work on instead of bothering me.”
“How’d that feel?”
“So why the ink?”
“So when she’s picking on me I can remember…”
I know it’s hard for G to share. She hates worrying anyone. I made sure to remind her she doesn’t have to talk to me but it’s incredibly important she talk to someone. I told her I understand. I am dealing with mean girls even now. It feels not great and as easy as it is to get angry that is their fuel.
I didn’t tell her what I’m about to share with you. When I was younger I just let it hurt me. I took it. I lamented. I became small. I assumed it had to be me. Something about me triggered this response.
I had a fantastic mentor share with me when I was dealing with a particularly vicious workplace mean girl that they are that way to EVERYONE.
I’m not special. However, in that moment it feels so awful you don’t think that way.
So I took a step back. I watched said mean girl in meetings. Paid attention to how she wrote her emails.
Yup. It was her. I was not SPECIAL. Lol.
And to be honest that to this day makes me feel an incredible sense of pity for her. What in your world is so bad to make you lash out like that?
As I replay all my mean girl run ins that is the tape I try use as background music.
I’m not saying I’m over it.
I’m saying it doesn’t stil sting a bit.
What I am saying is I’ve taken the power back. Or at least I try to.
I still want to bubble wrap G and it pisses me off that she’s dealing with this.
But… here’s the thing, I love her to pieces and am going to remind her every minute how fantastic she is. I hope she can use that as her force field or at least as a mini reminder when claws come out.
Before I forget- you’re all pretty freakin fantastic Mommas