Counsellor Newsletter: Mean Girls

mean girls and what a parent can do – newsletter as PDF

Mean Girls and What To Do

So what’s a parent or to do? Here are steps parents can take to stop the girl cruelty and raise emotionally-healthy, caring and strong young women.

STEP 1: Get Educated About a Girl’s Kind of Mean

STEP 2: Know Signs of the “Mean Girl Scene”

Signs A Girl May Be a “Mean Girl” Victim

She is “picked on,” shunned, or excluded often.
She displays a pattern of wishy-washy, on-and-off again “friendships.”
She speaks negatively about certain girls or a certain group of girls or clique.
She has a sudden marked and uncharacteristic change in mood.
She suddenly withdraws.
She doesn’t speak of having any friends.
She suddenly avoids certain social situations.
She seems jittery, concerned or even afraid when an email, text, message, or phone call comes for her.
She has a sudden change in her eating or sleep habits.
She starts to speak about girls in a mean way.

Watch for downslide. If you think your daughter is really having a hard time, be available. Schedule a few weekends together. Take her to the gym with you. Take her to lunch. Talk with her school.

STEP 3: Get Proactive and Stop the Cruelty

The goal is to raise strong, confident, and respectful young women. So open up the dialogue: Talk to your daughter.
Here are ideas that teachers, counselors and parents are doing to end the girl wars and cease the cruelty.

Teach conflict solving
Start with one ally
Point her in a different direction
Boost empathy
Don’t push too hard on being popular
Help her manage frustrations
Stay connected
Foster her strengths and passions
Find positive, female role models
Be the example you want your daughter to copy
Expect your daughter to be kind
Don’t let your child buckle into the cruel mentality of the other girls.

But also be clear that there can be no excuses: you expect her to be respectful and to find others who share those values.
Dr. Michele Borba, Parenting Expert