Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Your Mom Was Never as Cool as Me!!!

I had an interesting night with Munchkin last night. The Boy had to sleep by himself because I had some big sistering/mothering to do that required some snuggling:-) I am not sure that I had any great advice, but I do know that I helped, and I feel good about that!

The issue was related to a friend of hers. It is an older girl (the girl is probably 15) that she has known since she started school here and has played some sports with and some other stuff. She was one of the girls who was originally assigned as sort of a "mentor" to Munchkin when she started in school here (the school is really good with new kids and assigns a couple older kids to kind of show them around) and she definitely looks up to her.

Well, that girl has a boyfriend, and apparently this weekend she and the boyfriend decided to...ahem...seal the deal. All well and good, but I think we all know how kids are (ok...boys...I am blaming this on boys...) and word spread around pretty quickly. And those sorts of rumors are much worse on girls than they are on boys.

So, yesterday, her friend was the school slut, and a tramp and a whore and is probably pregnant and probably has 4,000 different STDs and yada, yada, yada. Really, I am sure that all of you know exactly how these things work.

But my little Munchkin, despite being a super tough chick, is also very, very sensitive, and she doesn't like seeing bad things said about people, especially her friends. So, she was bothered by the whole thing...by the way people spread the rumor, to the things they said about this girl to the way it reflects so differently on boys and girls. And, her way of dealing with things...which is to sit and talk about it openly and rationally, doesn't work when it is a quickly spreading rumor and a sort of mass piling on.

Again, she can be very sensitive, and things like this effect her. She has had no problem in asking her friends not to pick on the outcasts in their class...and at least two other kids have reported to their parents that they felt left out and picked on until Munchkin made an effort to get everyone to be nicer to them. She doesn't like when people are put down solely for the purpose of making others feel better about themselves.

Is this going to be a problem? Most likely, yes. She is approaching an age where kids begin to get very, very insecure, and that insecurity tends to manifest itself in meanness. Clearly, there will be more things like this going forward, despite her own efforts to not engage in that kind of behavior.

I have said it before on a bunch of occasions...she is very different from the other kids she goes to school with, and other kids her age. Some of it is her background, some of it is that she lives with me and not with a parent, and some of it is just how she is. She has great friends and some girls that she is extremely close with...but she is definitely different than them all in some obvious ways, and this is one of them. She is cool enough and confident enough to not be bothered by people saying things about her (at least I don't think she would be), but she doesn't react well to those same things being said about other people.

So, I don't really know. I tried checking my Motherhood manual for the chapter on dealing with this, and for some reason I just seem to have misplaced that book;-). I am sort of flying blind here, and I am not exactly sure what I should do. All I know how to do is listen to her, help her talk through her feelings and tell her how great I think she is. And snuggle:-) I can do that, too.

She seemed fine this morning, and I am sure that the whole thing will blow over today as these things usually do. Crisis averted? We shall see...

12 comments:

Ys said...

Ahh kids are evil at that age, aren't they? Nice of the boyfriend to spread the word, wasn't it? :/ It's really nice to hear that Munchkin doesn't go in for all the bitching and back-stabbing but I can see how that then makes her very upset. I think you're doing the right thing in just listening and being there for her. I hope her friend has someone like that as well because it sounds like she'll need someone.

Accidentally Me said...

Ys - I don't know that it was the boyfriend spreading the word. She could have told someone who spread it, too. Or, the boyfriend may have told one person thinking it would be kept in confidence. I don't think he was running around bragging about it, though...but I am not sure.

Ally said...

What a yucky situation. Reason # 37that having sex at 15 isn't the best idea. I'm glad that my friends and I (and our boyfriends) were all really close-lipped about that sort of stuff. Cuts down on all of this hateful drama.

I'm glad Munchkin is rising above it, although I can still see why it's hard for her to be around.

Smilf said...

Aw, she is lucky to have such a good big sis. I hated being that age - I wouldn't go back for anything. I think listening and letting her talk to you and for her to know you are there is perfect. Having a more open relationship as a parent about things like this seem to be a good thing. You probably want her to feel she can come to you no matter what and I think it sounds like you are doing a good job of that. :)

EAJ said...

I'm a little conservative when it comes to this, but to me, it's a good lesson about not having sex at the age of 15. I don't think anyone would describe a 15 year-old as being at their peak (of anything!), so why throw sex into it?

Aaron said...

Apparently, it wasn't such a good idea after all.

jojo said...

Hopefully what Munchkin will get out of all of this is to wait til she's older to...ahem... and be careful who she shares it with. If we could all only learn those lessons from our friends mistakes, huh? Life would sure be easier. :)

Accidentally Me said...

All - That is actually not the lesson I hope she takes from this. Is 15 too young to be having sex? Probably, but I don't want to tell her when she magically become old enough. I wasn't much older than that when I lost my virginity, and I don't think I was too young, nor do I regret it. And I am not going to make a judgement on whether or not this girl made a mistake in sleeping with her boyfriend.

What I hope she takes from it is that people can be mean, and they can be insecure and sometimes she needs to just ignore what they say. I want her to make good decisions for herself and to feel good enough about herself to not feel like she has to pick on others to make herself feel better.

I don't ever want her to make that kind of decision because of what others might say about her...I want her to make decisions because she can confidently and rationally weigh the potentional results and act accordingly.

Goose said...

Ouch! Sounds like you did the best you could. I'm really not looking forward to those days with my girls! :(

Sindhuja said...

i love what you have replied to al. about the lesson you want munchkin to learn. i thik it's a priceless lesson. Your a very understanding person and i wish i had an elder sister who would try to help me understand life just like you.

Lpeg said...

I am amazed at Munchkin's maturity. I can understand why this would upset her, and I am in awe with how you handle it.. by just being there for her, letting her talk, comforting her, and teaching her that rising above these things makes her a better person- and she looks up to you, which I think is why she acts like she does - she has a great role model. I can't believe how lucky she is to have you in her life, and for you to know that whatever you are doing, it's working :)

Scotty said...

Agree with Lpeg :) I think you're doing a great job