December 07, 2006,
V.M. asks from Dallas, TX on December 05, 2006
Seems like My 8 Year Old Daugther Is depressed...help Me
hi moms....my name is V. i am 25 yrs old and a mother of 3 beautiful kids ages 8,6, and 2. for a while now i have been having trouble with my 8 year old daughter fightin in school alot. it is very hard for me to figure out why is sh behavin the way she is. I live in pleasant grove, and as a lot of you might know, it is not a very good area. My daugther has been bullied through out her school years and has ben good about handleling them till this year. She is in the 2nd grade and would constantly be punched by 5th and 6th graders..i do talk alot to the teachers and principles but i cant be at school to stop this so i tell her to tell an adult when they mess with her, and if they keep on that she has to learn how to defend herself even if it means to punch back. Livin in an area like this she has to. At home she is very quiet. and if i call her attention on somethin she just simply says.."im goin to take a nap". she dosent tell me whats botherin her at all. she dosent say a word through dinner, infact she dosent even look up. Talkin about this, even when i think about it it brings tears to my eyes..i want to know what can i do. I had her very young at age 17 and my ext one followed at 19. please, if someone can help me out with some advise im ready to listen. it hurts to see my daugther this way. at age 8 she has alrady told a teacher that she wants to run away from school.
2 moms found this helpful
So What Happened?™
I want to take this time to thank everyone who responded to my bulletin. I have been a member of this site for quite a while now but never posted anything. Yesterday when i got the call from her teacher about the fighting and behavior, the rest of the day was just sad for me. I posted this bulletin up efore i left work yesterday and when i got home i spoke to my husband about what happened at school yesterday. For the first time he did not say a word. But i did see the sadness and confussion in his eyes. we just sat on the couch talkin for a long time trying to figure out what we can do. I came to work today and saw how many responses i got and read every single one. It felt real good to read everything every single one of you had to say. I am very happy to find this site. although i dont know any of you it feels as if i have known ya forever. thank you so much. I am printing all of your advice and am going to share it with my husband tonight. i will keep you posted on my daughter Alexandria.
I feel like everything is going to be alright, the more and more i read the more stronger and determine i feel to change this problem, thank ya again....V. m
M.S. answers from Dallas on December 05, 2006
I agree with everything that has been said. Absolutely take on the school and make them see that this is a problem, and you will not tolerate it. Something I wanted to add though...if you don't get a chance to spend very much time with her alone(which I know has to be hard having 3 that need you constantly), try to edge out a little time for just you and her. Take her out to lunch on a weekend, just you and her, or something similar.
It's possible that being away from the house, and away from the other children, she may open up a little better. I would think that at that age, a child wouldn't want his or her siblings to know what they are going through, for fear of embarrassment and being picked on by them. Not to say that they would, just that it may have crossed her mind and caused her to clam up some at home around them.
Just my 2cents. I truly hope you can get the schools to do something about it. I was the victim of horrible teasing and some abuse by other children when I was in school, and it can be devastating to self-esteem. I still struggle with my own self-esteem and mainly because of trying to overcome the taunts that were pounded in my head by my abusers. I wish you all the luck in the world!
P.J. answers from Dallas on December 06, 2006
Your story has touched me. Kids can be really cruel.
Yes it does seem like something is going on. Do you have any family memeber that she will open up to? I was bullied at a young age & I didn't want to tell my mother either. But if you don't have any one besides your self that might can get through to her. Just let her know you care about her & when she is ready to talk you will listen. If you can (I know it is hard with 2 other kids) spend some one on one time with her.
I hope everything goes well. Hopefully you can ge someone she will talk to.
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B.W. answers from Dallas on December 06, 2006
I agree with most all that has been posted. You need to get her out of that situation either by taking on the school and holding them accountable or moving or homeschooling. Abuse of this type is devasting to the child being abused and if left to go on can lead lead to self esteem issues, runaway and suicide. What is happening to your child is against the law and DISD policy. I agree also that it sould like sex abuse is a possibility and as I have been there with my child as well, you must get her out of that situation. Please let me know if I can help in any way...........you must show your daughter that is is NOT ok to be treated like this and that she does NOT have to endure it.
D.T. answers from Dallas on December 06, 2006
Please take your daughter to see a counselor. She needs to talk with someone who is trained to helkp her deal with whatever issues are bothering her. There are some places that have sliding scale fees if you don't have insurance that covers it. She is so young and has many years in school ahead of her.
S. answers from Dallas on December 06, 2006
Bless your heart, and your daughter, too! How awful for both of you. I was a school counselor, so I'm looking at this perhaps a little differently. First of all, I would encourage you to really show your love for her - give her lots of attention, hugs, cuddling, etc. She sounds starved for attention, and I don't say that to be critical. It is draining to be a mom, and it's hard to give out to everyone all the time! I know you may be already doing this...
Also, her behavior is a red flag for sexual abuse. You have to check this out, please don't ignore the possibility! It could happen anywhere, from anyone. Of the friends I have who were victims, it has been a brother, an uncle, a family friend, and a church music director. It can come from anywhere! So please be aware of that, and talk to her without getting too emotional or stern. Just some matter-of-fact questioning, with lots of assurances of your love and your desire to protect her.
More than anything, you have to get VERY ASSERTIVE with your school! They HAVE to protect her! It is not her job to defend herself against bullies. I don't want to be critical, but I can't believe you would leave her in such a situation for such a long time. She is shutting down - that is dangerous. Regardless of circumstances, you really have to protect her. If it means moving, DO IT!! I know that's not easy, but we're talking about her life and her emotional stability, as well as her physical safety. Can you imagine how loved and protected she would feel to know that you're willing to move to a new place to make sure she's safe?
My last word is, take her to a counselor - not a school counselor. I say that as a school counselor! We are not as well trained as a licensed professional counselor, nor can most school counselors spend the time you and your child need. A play therapist or family counselor will be very helpful.
Please don't let this continue. It is breaking your heart, and it sounds like your sweet daughter is already broken. My heart goes out to you both, and I wish you God's wisdom, guidance and providence as you work through this. Which brings me to my "real" last word! If you're not already involved in a church, consider it. It can provide great friendships for all your family, and support in many ways. But more importantly, you can always cry out to God. He hears you, cares for you, and cares for your daughter. He will help, if you ask and trust!
D.W. answers from Dallas on December 06, 2006
Well I almost cried when I read your post. It's good you recognize something is really wrong. A lot of people have suggested counselling and I agree. But that can be expensive so I wanted to point you to your insurance if you have it. My insurance pays for 8 sessions of mental health counseling. It's not a a lot but if yours or your husbands insurance covers it, it's a good start. I personally was the oldest of 3 during a time when my mom's and stepdad's marriage was rocky. I had taken on a lot of responsibility caring for my siblings to keep things calm and stress free in the house. No one noticed my feelings. Instead of shutting down, I acted out in my teens and early 20's by using (light) drugs and sleeping around. If it's only the situation at school, and not any type of abuse, check into home schooling co-ops as an option of getting her out of there. Please up date us. She sounds so sweet. You sound like a great mom. D.
R. answers from Dallas on December 05, 2006
Does the school have a guidance counselor (GC)? That's the best place to start. Be very persistent about getting her to talk to the GC and see if she can open up to them. If at all possible, can you also check into a child therapist because there may be things going on that they could dig out of her.
BTW, I hate to sound like an alarmist but have you suspected other types of abuse? Some of her behavior is consistent with abuse. A child therapist could help unlock the issues surrounding your daughters problems.
Finally, are you a member of a church? They also offer counselling. If not, I believe there are many churches in the area that provide counselling for free or a subsidized fee.
It's tough being such a young mom of 3 kids. However, I am sure there are resources out there that you can access to help you get professional help for your daughter. Do it as soon as possible because carrying such heavy emotional burdens becomes more difficult to treat and correct as the kids become older. The damage deepens with time.
Believe, trust and act...you will find an answer eventually!
God Bless You and Your Family!
M.S. answers from Dallas on December 05, 2006
Hi, I am a mother of an 8 year old boy. We are fortunate enough to live in a small town therefore we don't have the same problems in school. If she is that miserable at school, do you have any other options in regards to switching schools? If not, maybe you could become friendly with some of the parents of her school mates and have playdates and maybe if she gets to know some of them better maybe this will lessen some of the bullying problems that lead to the fighting. Unfortunately, kids can be awful. I would just continuously tell her how great she is and how the most important thing thing is for her to be happy with herself and not care what other kids think. However as an adult it is easier to do. You might even set up a meeting with your school's counselor where they might be able to offer advice. Sometimes kids don't want to talk to parents so if your child has a family member that you trust that she is close to you might have them talk with her. I wish you the best in this situation and hopefully we will hear back that things are going better for your little sweetheart.
N.K. answers from Dallas on December 05, 2006
From experience .....what you HAVE to do is make the school take notice.My oldest daughter was having a truly hard time in elementary school, lots of problems,both at home and with issues at school.You have to show her that you are on her side.Find out who is causing her grief and DEMAND a conference with the teacher,principal and the other parents of the kids involved.No matter what they need to be aware of what is going on in that school.If you wait too much longer it could not only get worse,but it could affect her grades and her future. You can't be there 24 hours a day to protect her and you shouldn't.BUT you do have to try to give her the tools to take care of herself or she will be helpless to the cruel reality of the world.For your own sanity PLEASE find out what is going on. One more thing the bullying that has went on for her IS ILLEGAL in the state of Texas,look at your schools code of conduct and arm yourself with information and take the school on HEADFIRST and INFORMED. Do Not allow them to ignore the situation.