Girl Issues

Updated on April 15, 2009
K.G. asks from Round Lake, IL
14 answers

Hi Ladies, I've got great responses in the past from you, so let's try this one.

My 6 year old daughter is in Daisy. Two of her best friends from her Kindergarten class are in Daisies too. The leader's daughter does a special hand shake with the two best friends, but not with my daughter. My daughter is feeling left out and says that the leaders daughter is not being a good Daisy because she is not including everyone.

I validated my daughters feelings and I recommended that she say something to the leaders daughter "I'd like to do that too" or something of that nature.

If that doesn't work, do I say something to the leader? Any advice is appreciated!

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So What Happened?

There was a Daisy meeting this week and my daughter asked the leaders daughter to teach her the handshake and, thankfully, the other girl said yes!

I truly appreicate all the responses. I do tend to be over-protective and know I have to keep that in check. I'm glad this one worked out. Wonder what tomorrow will bring!

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answers from Chicago on

My daughter is going to be 14 next month .
I have told her from Kindergarten age on, about those girls and situations.Because even after many years I still remember my own experiences in life with those girls.
I have told her that they are girls who behave that way and to never behave that way herself,even if they are girls she maybe doesn't want to be friend with,treat them nice!!!!
Many times there will be moments,when you will be left out,not invited, etc.
It doesn't feel nice,but that is the way it is.Sometimes you don't want to invite some girls ,I think that is ok,as longest you do the inviting not right in front of them.
She totally got it and was never upset not to be invited.
I would tell my daughter to ask if she can join the handshake,and if they say NO,to accept it and maybe try to find another girl and make her own handshake with her.
With the leader it always depends,they are different kind of women,the nice ones you can talk to and they weren't aware of these situations and than you have those women,they raise these little "mean girls" so you can imagine, how they are going to react!!!!!
It's not easy.....

Good luck

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answers from Chicago on

Me personally I would just talk to your daughter about the behavior she sees in this girl. Talk to her about how it makes her feel and how she should never do that to someone else. Help her deal with the disappointment of not being included and trying to not let it bother her so much.

I would not talk to the girl's mother. That makes you look over-protective and whiney. It makes your daughter look pitaful. Just let it go. Your daughter doesn't need mommy jumping in to such a minor situation. Now if the girl was threatening your daughter with physical harm, then I would address it with the mother....or police in some instances. If the girl was doing something equally dangerous, then yes. But you can't protect your little one from mean peers.

I can sympathize with you. My daughter is generally very sweet and kind to everyone. She has even been rewarded at school with prizes from the vice principal because she was caught being kind to a little boy that was being teased. So I know she's got a big heart. (though she does try to be mean to her little sister)...anyway, she has an older cousin that she just adores. On several occasions throughout the past six years I've seen her older cousin do and say really mean things to my daughter. My first instinct was to go in and set her cousin straight....or even tell her mother what a hateful little girl her daughter was being at the moment. But I held back. I talked to my husband because it's his family and we decided that our daughter has to learn to handle these kinds of situations. We talked to her about how she felt when her cousin was mean to her and we talked about how the behavior was really bad. We told her that her cousin loves her and sometimes people we love do things to us without thinking. We told her that next time she should look her cousin in the eye and ask her why she's being mean. Then tell her "I love you and I don't want you to be mean to me."

In several situation now we have told her to look the person right in the eye and ask them why they are being mean and if it feels good to hurt her. She will tell them just that and explain that she wants to be friends. If she gets a bad response then she knows she's supposed to say to them well I'm not going to play with you as long as you are being mean. (She's never to say I don't want to be your friend or use that line just because someone isn't doing what she wants....because she's tried)

Anyway, she is getting very good about confronting others when they are ugly to her or even other peers. She isn't ugly or mean/confrontational....she's been taught to be kind, but direct. We have taught her what to say depending on the response. But she's always to be kind and polite.

It has worked with her cousin and they play great together. It has worked with two boys that were picking on her on the apologized for being mean and the other just left her alone after that.

So sorry about the novel. I thought I should clarify what I was telling you with my own experience with my 6 year old.

PS I forgot to mention that the reason I THINK you shouldn't talk to the mother is because my mother tried to help me once with a little boy that was teasing me. In the end she made it way worse for me and then the whole bus joined the fun. That had to be the worst year of my life. At that age I'm not sure it would turn around on your daughter, but it could.


answers from Chicago on

Hi K.,

Your daughter is 100% correct. She is not being a good daisy. I can't believe the leader would exclude her that way. My daughter's Brownie leaders are wonderful and they are always reminding the girls that they are all "Sister Scouts". Girls do tend to exclude others, and it is only the beginning, but I feel our scout leaders really stress the importance of making everyone welcome and included in the fun. I think the advice you gave your daughter was perfect, and if it continues, you are well within your rights to say something. Anyone who wants to exclude children from things should not be a leader.


answers from Rockford on

K., if you get this 2x, computer is posting all by itself today! haha.

Anyway, everyone here has given you some good advice and I wanted to respond as a leader who has dealt w/ this. Our girls are juniors (4th grade) and at this age, it can get a little clicky and some of the girls were making comments and snickering about other girls.

One girl left a meeting in tears (and the other leader and I did not know this) and she decided to quit. Apparently, this was not the first time and mom had kept telling her to suck it up and not let it get to her, but this was the last straw. Well, I was SHOCKED! The other leader and I were both so upset that this happened because we have always tried to tell the girls that while they may not all be friends at school, in girl scouts, we are sisters and should be accepting and supportive while we are together.

It so happened, totally by coincidence, that we had a meeting about bullying scheduled around this time, so we were honest w/ the girls and told them that someone had quit because she felt like others were being mean to her. The girls were shocked too and learned a valuable lesson. And the one who quit, did come back (yay!)

So...I would approach the leader...but make sure you do not place blame or be mean about it. As a leader and daycare provider, I have learned that putting someone on the defensive will not get the results you want. Let her know that you understand that not all the girls are going to be best friends, but this is a safe environment where they should all feel included and accepted. And that maybe a private hand shake is something saved for playdates. As they get older, the girls do have to learn that some are better friends than others and that is just the way it is, but at this young age, it's sometimes hard to understand. Best of luck w/ this...hopefully you have an understanding leader (sometimes its the leaders girls who can say or do things w/out even knowing how hurtful it can be!) Let me know how it works out!



answers from Chicago on

I have a 6 yr old also in Daisys. I would def say something.+



answers from Chicago on

I would definitely say something to the leader if the girl doesn't include her after your daughter says something to her. She may not even know that her daughter is doing that. I'm sure as a parent and a Daisy leader she would frown on that behavior. Good luck.



answers from Chicago on

I think that you did a great job, first of all, of validating her and letting her know that you love her. I think what to do next is a tough call because she sounds very smart (being able to infer that not including others is not a Daisy characteristic). I myself would give real thought to if you do step in, are you solving the problem for her and making a bigger deal than she thinks it is? Or could you use the situation as a teaching moment like, sometimes people will be like that for whatever reasons and how do you think you could respond that would make you feel good about yourself? Understanding the power dynamics of it gives her the power rather than her depending on this girl who decides what hand shake matters or not. Not sure if that makes sense or not but good luck and congrads on having such a smart six year old!



answers from Chicago on

I say with out a dought say something, at this age is when kids are learning and if they get set in their way to be a bully that is how it is going to stay. If that still dont work, sit your daugther down and explain to her that some people are just rude and she dont need them as a friend anyway.....Good luck.....My daugther is eight now and we still have to go through the not so nice people talk from time to time and that also helps me keep her away from kids that are not so good without seeming like a mean mom...I just like to keep her around good kids so she will always choose the right path in life.....You sound like the same is wanted for your little girl.....Good Luck.....Jenn



answers from Chicago on

I agree with the other 2 posts as far as using this as a teaching moment with your daughter. It sounds as if you are raising her to include others if she can tell this is not fair. As the mother of a 12 year old girl, I can tell you that this is only the beginning, unfortunately. I am not sure that I would step in here. There will be many times in her life that she will not be included in things as I am sure there will be times when she is unable to include everyone, such as birthday parties, sleepovers, etc... If the girl is flagrantly being mean, then by all means, you have to do something, but I suspect your daughter will be able to learn something from this experience and become a better person for it. I like the idea of letting her ask to be included and see where that goes. Good luck to you! : )



answers from Chicago on

Oh, I wish I could give you a more encouraging response . . . but these girl things never end. This, I'm afraid, is the first of many, and each one is a heart wrencher. Because it is a formal organized group, I think you should mention it to the leader with the caveat of don't be surprised if the result isn't what you'd hoped as it's her daughter. You've done well in affirming your daughter. And, sometimes that's the best you can do. Life isn't fair, and there are many good little girls who grow up learning over and over the truth of that statement. It's tough, but these little girls grow into confident young women who can face the world head-on. But while it's happening, it's no fun.




answers from Chicago on


Sounds like your daughter is shy, OR there is something more going on than just
doing a handshake and I wonder if she gets to do the handshake, will she feel any better, or will she still be feeling left out.

Can you attend one of the meetings and see how the girls interact with each other.
If your daughter is being "left out" of more than a handshake, then it needs to be addressed with the leader. If she isn't being left out, then your daughter will need to learn to speak up for herself. I hate to say it, but don't do it for her.

PS if the leader isn't on the same page as you on this, I'd take her out of daiseys and put her in something else.

Ahh… the joys of parenthood! : )



answers from Chicago on

I would definately use this as an oportunity to teach your daughter to always include others so they dont feel the same way that she does. Then I would def. have your daughter try to work things out with the girl first. Maybe something along the lines of "can I try that next?" or "Can you show me how to do that?" -- if that doesnt work and it really hurts her feelings, I would make sure to mention something to the leader, your daughter is very right, that little girl is not being a "very nice Daisy". Maybe that little girl doesnt understand that she is hurting your daughters feelings. Better to let her try to work it out on her own first, It will make her a stronger person, but if not she's only 6, definately speak up for her. Good Luck to you and your little Daisy!



answers from Chicago on

I don't agree with most of the other posts. It doesn't sound like the other girls are being mean, they are just doing something special among themselves, and your daughter isn't part of it. You can't force others to be your best friend. Just like being invited to a birthday party. If you daughter wasn't invited to a party, you wouldn't say anything to the birthday girl.

She can ask to learn the handshake, but if she's turned down, she needs to get over it.

If it continues to bother her, ask the leader to mention to her daughter that the handshake should only be done outside of meeting times. (Maybe the troop can make up their own handshake.)



answers from Chicago on

As a former teacher at a private school who believes in inclusion for all kids, you should definitely say something to her. She would want to know this and probably isn't aware. She can use this as a teaching lesson for her own daughter and I'm sure she'd welcome your concern. Take your advice that you've given to your daughter and speak with her. It's sad that as mothers we should even have to question how someone would take this. Good Luck.

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