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confussed
confussed asks:
Q:

My daughter is being bullied by group of girls she wont let me do anything what can I do?

My daughter is 16 and very pretty has alot of friends but a group of girls are always calling her names and threatening to kick her butt. She wont let me call anyone what can I do? She handles it well but they are ruining her reputation by the things they say.One of her friends is friends with them and constantly back stabs her which just adds fuel to the fire. I dont know if I should call the parents or let her handle it.
In Topics: Bullying and teasing
> 60 days ago

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Expert

Boys Town National Hotline
Jun 30, 2011
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What the Expert Says:

This is a difficult situation.  It is likely the reason the daughter doesn't want you to get involved is because if you do, thing may get worse for her.  You say that she handles it well, what does she do?  Does she have good friends that she can turn to in this situation?  Do you notice the bullying effecting her mood or everyday life?  If it is effecting the quality of her life, then encourage her to report for herself and tell her that you are going to have a hard time standing by watching this happen because you are worried for her.  If she doesn't want you to report it say, "Well, things simply can't continue the way that they have been going.  I am worried for you because of how much I see this is effecting you and if we do nothing then I am worried about the consequences of this for you" or something to that effect.  If you do something without her permission, you may not know what sort of consequence it will end up having for her.  She is a lot more knowledgable of the situation than you are.  Ask her questions, let her know you care, and tell her it is impossible for you to just let her go through this because you love her too much.  Then problem solve together, ask why she doesn't want to get you involved.  If you do something without consulting her first, you may never hear about the bullying again, but it will not be because it isn't happening, it will be because she doesn't tell you because she doesn't trust you.  

Teaching coping skills is always important when talking about bullying because there is no such thing as a 100%, this will always work to prevent any bullying from occuring.  It is good to get the school involved.  It can sometimes be helpful to get the other students parents involved (though it really depends on the parents).  All of these things are great to do, but it is impossible to assure safety at all given times.  Work with her on strategies to remain safe and encourage her to have her positive and helpful friends with her often.  Also talk to her about her backstabbing friend and just ask why she is still friends with her when she treats her poorly.  You can't force her to not be her friend, but you can have a talk with her about what her friendships are all about.  

Bullying is a really difficult and complicated issues and with teenage girls it can be especially cruel.  We hope you and your daughter can find some answers for how to intervene, prevent and cope with the bullying.

Counselor, Dominic
Boys Town National Hotline
1-800-448-3000-A parenting hotline
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Additional Answers (5)

SingleMommy
SingleMommy writes:
You should go to her parents and have a serious talk with them about this whole situation. They have the power to punish their daughter. If things are left unattended, things get messy. You should take action so that your daughter's self confidence will not diminish more than it probably already did.
You are the parent, you should decide what is best for her. What do you mean, "she wont' let me?" YOU MUST HELP HER.
Teach how to stand up for herself - ALWAYS - and not be afraid to "hit" back if necessary. Teach her to have a strong character that cannot be demolished by frivolous, mean comments of anyone. 16 is a tough age when most of youngsters make mistakes. You be there along the way, tell her to trust and confide in you so that you can protect her.
And, I always say: all kids must learn a martial arts sport. It is about defense. Sadly, in today's world, we need this more and more.
> 60 days ago

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Jacklynne
Jacklynne writes:
I'm going there it with my so and going to the parents  didn't help. There was a lot he wasn't telling me and I'm still finding out. It escalated to the point he got hurt and had to go to the hospital and I had to go to the police. I found out there are now laws against bullying. I still don't know how to handle it so I know how you feel.
> 60 days ago

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ZULEYMA
ZULEYMA writes:
What you mean she wont let you do a thing ,,, first your the parent , do what you have to do to get the school to notice what is happen, if you have to report this to the police do so , and get the other parent to know what their kids are doing..
> 60 days ago

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Janathenianna
Janathenianna writes:
I've heard this question answered by another professional and it always made sense to me on several levels. You should go to the school, report what is going on, and ask that you NOT be named as the person reporting the bullying. Let the girls think that someone else from the school (be it faculty or student) has been witnessing the bullying. That way your daughter won't seem like a snitch and neither will you.
> 60 days ago

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cfigueroa
cfigueroa writes:
I have four daughters, two of which are teens. I have gone through this with both teens and this is the way that I handled it. Let me first say that trust and communication with your children is key. As a parent, we may feel the impulse to jump into action to "save" our children; however, most times, this does more bad than good. When my daughters came to me about their frustrations about being bullied, I validated their feelings and concerns. I then made them part of the decision making process and we each brainstormed ideas as to how we can deal with the issue without making it obvious that the information came from them. One thing you have to be mindful of is that they are the victims that have to endure whatever consequences result from running to the school, parents, police, etc. Unless you are with your child at school all day every day, you may create a more volatile environment.

My daughters and I agreed that anonymity was important and I expressed to them that there may be other victims that would benefit from our intervention. I suggested that I contact the principal via email, so that I would not be seen at the school going to the principal's office, explain the situation and express the importance of confidentiality. The principal understood and we developed a plan where the assistant principal would be present in the area where most of the bullying took place and try to catch them in action. This way it didn't look like anyone told on them. Well, it worked! The assistant principal admonished all the girls, including mine (of course she was in on the plan and knew it was not really intended for her) and all the parents were called. Out of four girls, only one parent seems to be nonresponsive and blames everyone else for her daughter's behavior. The parent was warned that police action could be taken.

The lesson here is that my child is a stakeholder in the situation and already feels out of control. By giving her some control in the decision making process, she felt empowered. This maintained their trust in me and our communication has never been better. It also improved the vigilance at the school because they had no idea this was going on. Support, teach and empower your children!
> 60 days ago

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