How to Stop Bullying under my roof??

Jennifer - posted on 04/24/2013 ( 3 moms have responded )




First, thanks for reading I know it is long.....

Okay I’m trying to figure out how to deal with a slight bullying (if slight is even possible) that I have found happening under my own roof. I have a 7 year old daughter our neighbor has a 10 year old daughter. They have know each other for years. I am to the point where I don’t want my daughter playing with the neighbor.

1. My daughter asks to do things (swim, go to friends house, snacks, etc.) because the neighbor child prompts her. (Keep in mind I have previously told them or her (my daughter) no because nobody is out to watch them, or you have already had a snack and dinner will be done soon, etc.) I have also called them out on this because I will see the neighbor child “whisper” in my childs ear and then here comes my child asking questions I have already given answers to previously.

2. My child complains that the neighbor kid is mean (which I tell her then to not play with her or stand up for herself and call her “friend” out on being mean simply because it is not always seen/heard by an adult) but yet as soon as the neighbor comes around she wants to play. (I explain to my child that a true friend does not make you feel bad about yourself but makes you feel good about yourself regardless on if you make a mistake.)

3. My daughter has made comments/asked me about her stomach being to “fat” which I explain to her that she is not fat (which she isn’t she is a bean pole with long legs) and God makes everyone different, etc. (I’m over weight but I do not discuss or obsess over my weight and she has made comments to me about how I need to get that medicine on the info-mercial about losing that “muffin top” and I finally had to tell her that stuff like that is bullying and it hurts my feelings and that is not okay nor will it be accepted.) I know that the child next door is over weight and has a stomach on her, but she is built like her father. I am wondering if the other child is complaining about her body shape/size around my daughter and making my child think less of her physically appearance.

4. Neighbor child has been caught lying at our house and attempts to get my child to lie as well. I can tell when my child is lying because she gets annoyed and starts raising her voice when you question her about the thing she is lying about, plus she gets mad.

5. My sister has heard the neighbor child say things like “what are you going to do about it?” directed towards my child and she (my sister) has said something to the child to correct the behavior/send her home when the child attempts to deny saying what my sister had just heard her say.

6. Yesterday was my last straw when my child some how “ran into the door frame” and surprisingly didn’t break her nose or make it bleed. When I asked her what happened she said that she was closing the back door (which is double doors but the second is never opened) and her nose hit the door frame (the part that is in between the two doors at the door handle) both me and my husband are having a hard time seeing how she had accomplished this when it looks like her nose was hit head on. Over the weekend she had informed me of how he neighbor girl had “pulled her ear” which I got upset about naturally. I told her again not to play with someone that is going to be mean to you and hurt you like that it’s not a true friend.

My overall question is what can I do to protect my child from a bully that lives next door? I find it terrible when you are on the verge of telling your child to just beat the crap out of the other child. I have informed the parents of incidents when there child says or does things to mine that I find is inappropriate and they do get onto her/ground her etc. but it seems to just keep happening and I’m done. How can I resolve this without my child feeling like she has no friends to play with at home and feeling exiled in the neighborhood? She has friends in the neighborhood but the girl next door is the one that she always wants to play with but by playing with her she doesn’t act the way that she should, and I don't think that allowing my child to be bullied just because she likes playing with the child is healthy or safe both mentally and physically.


[deleted account]

Most of what you described is NOT bullying, even in a very mild form.

1. She's asking your kid to ask you something she doesn't have the courage to ask herself. Your kid has the right to say "No, mom's going to say no, I'm not going to ask." The neighbor kid is whispering in her ear, not pinning her to the ground and forcing her to do something.

2. This is very normal behavior for girls this age. At this age, "She's being mean" is more likely to mean, "she didn't want to do what I wanted to do and we couldn't come to an agreement." or that they had any sort of disagreement and the other girl stood her ground. They are close friends, they will argue, and they will forgive each other. If anything, you should be proud that your daughter knows how to let go and not hold a grudge.

3. Body image issues are EVERYWHERE. It could be true that your girl is picking them up from her friend, but it doesn't sound like the friend is trying to hurt your girl's self esteem by insulting her body. More likely, the girl next door, who you said was a bit overweight, was just lamenting to your girl about how she wishes she were thinner. Think about it, how often have you vented to a girlfriend that your new workout is crazy hard, or that you're not ready for swimsuit season, etc.? Bullying would be if they neighbor girl were telling your daughter that she is ugly or worthless because she is fat. If the neighbor is equally fat, that wouldn't work out because she'd be saying that she, herself was ugly or worthless. right?

4. Lying is a natural part of growing up. Your child is going to lie whether she has a friend telling her to do it or not. They lie, and as they grow, the nature of the lies changes. It is our job to make sure they know it's wrong and why it is wrong, so that as adults they know when to lie and when to tell the truth....and don't say you never lie. There are "lies" that we tell everyday just out of politeness--kids pick up on that, and they imitate, but they don't know all the rules yet.

5. "What are you going to do about it?" are constructive words. If there is a problem, it is the first thing we should ask ourselves. I don't understand what is wrong with her saying this to your daughter.

6. If the girl physically assaulted your daughter, then that is bullying. In this case though, you didn't see her do it, and your daughter says it was an accident, so without proof, you really can't blame the girl. Just make sure your daughter has the confidence in you that she needs in order to tell the truth if someone hurts her. Is there any reason she would be afraid to tell you? If so, you need to address that. If not, you need to trust her.

All in all, I don't think your daughter is being bullied. I think she has a friend that she sees very often and she is learning to navigate the stormy waters of disagreement. When we don't know someone all that well, we tend to smile and nod without saying too much when we disagree, just to keep the peace (if we are smart). Once we get to know someone better, we have the confidence in the relationship to stand our ground during a disagreement without worrying that this person will leave us forever, or seek some sort of twisted vengeance. I'm not saying we bare our souls, but we can have more in depth conversations on topics we may not necessarily agree on 100% and still maintain the friendship. Your daughter is embarking on this part of her social development. It's a big step and she will need guidance, but for the most part, let her make her own decisions.


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♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 04/24/2013




Bingo: Ditto what Kelly said.

Can't add any more, except to say that if you truly are intent upon keeping this child away from you and yours, then tell her parents that she's no longer allowed over, that you no longer will watch her, will no longer allow playdates. Then, remember that you'll have to keep an eagle eye on your child for the rest of the time that the neighbors live there in order to keep the children apart.

But, honestly, I agree with Kelly.

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