22 answers

Daughter Hates Her New Middle School

My 12 yr old started her new school today. She had been with the same group of kids since kindergarten, and so this switch was traumatic for her (and me!). She was given a "buddy", another new girl. But this new girl actually knew other people, and at lunch she kind of left my daughter out of the conversations...Anyway, my daughter tried to talk to a couple of people, to no avail. No one she met came across as super friendly, or willing to help out a new person. She is in the 7th grade, so all of these kids have been together since at LEAST 6th grade. She came home today crying. Said that she wants to be home-schooled. What should I do for her? I have told her to strike up a conversation about anything from shoes to "Twilight"...she is just so incredibly shy and miserable. Any help is appreciated.

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

The second day of school was difficult in the morning. She woke up crying. Which had me crying after she left. I called the school and spoke to her guidance counselor. She was assigned a new "buddy", and they hit it off right away. She now has a group of girls that she considers friends. She also has a crush, and it turns out he lives in our neighborhood. She takes time getting ready in the morning, choosing just the right outfit, every hair in place..anyway, it is going to work, and I am so happy that she is happy now. Thank you so much for all of the advice. I really should have just given it more time, as one day isn't really that long to adjust to change. I tend to panic when my kids are hurting!! Thanks again!

Featured Answers

ugh. I know how she feels. I was VERY socially awkward and shy when I was growing up, and due to custody switches, divorces, death, and moving I switched schools a lot growing up. (I went to 6 different elementary schools, 4 different middle schools, and 3 high schools. blegh) I always had a hard time adjusting at first, but eventually I would find friends. The main thing is to keep being friendly, and to be interested in other people. People LOVE to talk about themselves. lol.

3 moms found this helpful

i agree with new mom, don't home school her because it's tough for her to start a new school. That's part of the lesson's in life is "change" and meeting new people.

2 moms found this helpful

More Answers

In 9 days I will be in the position of giving my daughter the "pep talk". Same scenario---has been with same group of girls since 1st grade, now going into 6th gr at new middle school. All the girls are in a different class, except for one who thinks she is the princess of NYC. Atleast my daughter knows a lot of boys in the new class from her old one, so she should be comfortable in the actual classroom. My concern is her making new friends, not because of herself, but because of the one other girl (very competitive, bossy, diva, you name it lol). Anyway, I told her not to be surprised if she doesn't make new friends the first, second or third day, or even in the first month. I told her to just be herself and they will want to befriend you just as the other girls in your old school did. Crossing fingers!!!!!!
Your daughter just needs a little more time to adjust. Tell her she is not alone, a lot of girls feel the way she does, it's normal sometimes, and things will get better. I wish her the best!

3 moms found this helpful

ugh. I know how she feels. I was VERY socially awkward and shy when I was growing up, and due to custody switches, divorces, death, and moving I switched schools a lot growing up. (I went to 6 different elementary schools, 4 different middle schools, and 3 high schools. blegh) I always had a hard time adjusting at first, but eventually I would find friends. The main thing is to keep being friendly, and to be interested in other people. People LOVE to talk about themselves. lol.

3 moms found this helpful

She has only been there one day. Remind her that middle school really is hard for most of the kids, it is just that some of them are good at hiding their fear.

Do you all have a back to school night? You could find out what clubs are available there. Also what is she taking for electives? Maybe if she is taking art for example you could find out if they have an art club for her to join.. Spanish club (ours takes a trip to Spain each year)..

Has she ever taken the First Aid babysitters training through the Red Cross? If not, see if you can organize them to go to your daughters middle school one Sat and train a bunch of the kids..(boys and girls) They usually have to partner up, so she would be in a smaller group and get to meet friends..

For the dances, at our middle school they had a group of kids that helped decorate the walls and set up and run the Karaoke area.. Some of the kids helped sell snacks..

At the local elementary school Carnivals they always had kids from the middle school help run their booths.. Your daughter could gather names and organize a group.. This would count towards Volunteer hours.

In the Library they had a "Lunch Bunch" that would meet in there and work on jigsaw puzzles. They also had a group that met each lunch to play chess..

Find out how to work on the school newspaper, yearbook. Get her a camera and let her be the historian for the paper and the yearbook..

Maybe the Librarian will know if there is a book club at school she would join.. Maybe she could start one?

I know this is hard for you, but she will be fine, she just needs to find a little group of nice kids with similar interests.. They are there too looking for a friend.. she jsut needs to look around and find things she is interested in.

3 moms found this helpful

She just started and she has to adjust. Tell her to look on the school boards to join something. A sport or club. That will get her interacting with a group who has similar likes. Just support her, but she has to navigate this new school on her own. Tell her you can't let her quit so quickly it will be a set up to quit anything she doesn't like in the future. If things are still a problem in a month I'd suggest a meeting with the guidence counselor, they deal with these issues daily. I feel for her but she'll get through it :)

3 moms found this helpful

We are there now. We have gotten several books on starting Middle School that have been nice. My favorite is The American Girl Library A Smart Girl's Guide to Middle School, which is filled with tips written by and for girls in Middle School. We also just checked out a few more books from the library including Middle School: The Real Deal, which my daughter said was helpful. I have tried to empower her with many different tools that have worked for other girls and then she has chances to choose from these suggestions on how to help herself. It's a good life skill to learn how to adjust to strange and hard situations. School Clubs, Sports Teams, Church, class electives that are more interactive rather than lecture, after school activities, all will make meeting people with similar interests easier and when there is a basis for something in common friendship is easier to develop.

Good Luck.

3 moms found this helpful

give her a little time. school has just started and it is hard when you are starting over again at any age. let her work her way through this. she will more then likely go to college and meet all new people again. then when she enters the work force she will start new jobs where she has to meet new people. when she moves into her first place or moves again, new neighbors. so let her feel her way through this. she has to learn to deal with life. i know it hurts to see her hurting, i know i wouldn't like to my kids cry but she has to learn to deal with life. good luck!

2 moms found this helpful

New schools are definitely TOUGH! From Kindergarten to 12th grade I went to 7 different schools and each time I started a new school it got easier in a lot of ways, but it was also just as hard each time. The reason I say "easier," well, because I knew that there was little to no chance that I wouldn't make at least one friend by the end of the school year, let alone by the end of the first month. This too shall pass. It is your daughter's first day and I guarantee that in one week she will be fine.

My high school was actually the toughest school I started. My parents put me in a small private school (my graduating class was 28 people) in the 9th grade and every single one of the kids there had been together their whole lives. I was the first new person in 4 years for the kids in my class! Talk about a tough crowd. Everyone there thought I made friends fast, but to me it felt like forever. Within two weeks I had not just one friend, but several groups of friends.

All this to say, don't home-school her just because it's hard for her in this new environment. This will not be the first time your daughter is put in a situation that's uncomfortable and hard. Perhaps this will be something that will help her come out of her shell.

2 moms found this helpful

i agree with new mom, don't home school her because it's tough for her to start a new school. That's part of the lesson's in life is "change" and meeting new people.

2 moms found this helpful

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