Mean Girls – A Lifestyle

Is it just me or does it seem to you that mean girls are increasing exponentially?  Sure, there have always been mean girls.  No doubt, even during the stone age there  was one cave girl who was giving another Cro-Magnon chick attitude about her sub standard fur pelt.  I mean wearing a brown bear hide in spring – how prehistoric.  When I was in school there were a couple of girls that were less than kind.  Let me take this opportunity to point out the actions of one Dawn S. who during the high school choir Christmas gift exchange give me a girdle.  I  can still remember my pain and embarrassment to this day and get this, last year she attempted to friend me on Facebook.  Imagine my great delight as I promptly hit “ignore.”   But, my experience is mild compared with the tales you hear of the Modern Day Mean Girl.

The M.D.M.G. is not content with random acts of unkindness, for her meanness is a lifestyle.  She cultivates it.   Meanness is planned out, plotted and executed. Not content with “just” hurting someone’s feelings she’s out for total annihilation. Like a heat seeking missile she’s all about the search and destroy.    A high school counselor told me that the bully they worry about at schools today is not the stereotype of the big guy beating up the nerd, but the psychological terror wrought by the mean girls.

Let me tell you as a mother it’s hard to hear about and watch.  My daughter is just 10, but I’ve already witnessed what I call “mean girls in training” or M.G.I.T.  Little girls who already have gotten punch drunk on the power of pain.  To imagine these girls, five years from now, at 15, frightens me.  They’ll be like sarin gas infiltrating a high school. What’s happened in the span of one generation for an ever-increasing number of girls to jump on the cruelty bandwagon?

I have my theory and it doesn’t speak well of us, the moms.  It would be oh so easy to point the finger at pop culture, but no, we need to look closer to home, like in our own kitchen.  I believe the mean girl craze is being fueled by the high stakes game known as competitive parenting. We start out early creating these mean girls.  From over the top exclusive birthday parties for the pre-school set to embracing “diva” as a good attitude for a three-year old. Once schools starts it’s all about the who, what, when and where of activities. Select soccer and competition dance team at age five?  Who are we kidding? In our quest to give our daughters every opportunity have we misinterpret that to mean everything?

What have we done with the foundation of parenting – the Golden Rule?  Teaching our daughters to treat others as they would like to be treated.  I’ll tell you what we’ve done with it.  We’ve thrown it aside because we’ve decided we’d rather be our daughter’s B.F.F. than her mother. It sure is a lot easier to be her friend.  Being a mother sucks.  There’s the discipline, the nagging, the whole role model thing and the guilt.  That guilt that keeps you awake at night as you go over your day in your head praying that you’re doing the right thing with your kids.  That guilt haunts you. Oh yes, being a BFF is so much easier and not to mention fun.  Shopping and gossiping over saying no repeatedly throughout the day – winner B.F.F.

As mothers we have become too invested in the outer shell that holds our daughter’s heart and soul.  We have taken our strong girls and sacrificed them to the God’s of Popularity.  We tweeze, pluck, wax, hair extension, highlight, no carb, detox our beautiful girls until they are a reflection of what society says is beauty, to what looks good on their Facebook page and ours. But we ignore what really matters and we don’t listen to them when they really try to tell us because we’re sooo busy.  It’s a busy Olympics out there and the gold goes to the mom with the most pick up and drop offs in one week.

Behold, mothers look at what we have created – Perfect, pretty, popular girls that are a reflection of us.  Is it a wonder they’re so mean?

*Thank you for reading Snarky.  (Sorry if today’s post was a Debbie Downer,  maybe I’m under caffeinated.)  If you would like to stay up-dated on new posts you can go to Facebook, type in Snarky in the Suburbs and click on like.

26 thoughts on “Mean Girls – A Lifestyle

  1. Cheryl says:

    As a middle school teacher, I see those Mean Girls every day. Itt hurtas my heart to see it. A couple of years ago, there was a whole GROUP of them, much like the movie. I hated having them in my class! That year, we had several assembies about bullying. It didn’t seem to help. These girls honestly couldn’t understand that they were mean.

    I don’t have any daughters myself, but I worry about my niece who is only in 1st grade. She, unfortunately, already has a couple of friends that I would categorize as mean. I dreeaad them getting older, and finding that power that comes. It makes me shudder and hope that maybe I can have a positive influence on her.

    • Ruthie says:

      I agree, Cheryl. There is a group of mean girls at my daughter’s junior high and there have been numerous assemblies about bullying, but they truly don’t seem to “get it” that they are doing this. And worse, their mothers seem to have no clue that their daughters are acting this way. If I sit through one more volleyball game and am forced to overhear how sweet these girls are, I might projectile vomit. My daughter has been on the receiving end of their abuse, and it breaks my heart to see her so hurt.

      • snarkyinthesuburbs says:

        The moms have to know their daughters are mean. They chose to ignore it because to correct the problem would 1) take too much time, 2) ruin their mother daughter as B.F.F.’s relationship, 3) would require the mothers to acknowledge that their off spring is not perfect (gasp)! Stay strong sister!

  2. Linda says:

    Bullying is also in the making at the preschool level. I was disgusted when a mother of triplets justified her children’s unacceptable behavior (numerous bites and hits at my son) because my son refused to let her children take the tricycle while he was riding it during his turn. The school’s response was that the triplets are small but that my son behaved wonderfully. What the heck? If the triplets are small then why are they in the program? My son behaved appropriately because I’m trying to raise a gentleman. “But the mother is so nice.” was my response from the teachers about the other mother. What am I? Chop liver? I’m the one who’s teaching my son to stand his ground and to do the right thing. Otherwise, I’d be teaching my son to punch anyone in the nose for bothering him, which is what the other mother is teaching her terrors.

  3. Nanny O says:

    OMG…you should see it at the High School level. Last year my dear friend’s daughter was bullied so badly by a group of girls that she finally transfered to another school. Absolutely no back-up form the school administration. And those girls are wicked. And their parents behave as if their girls are the victims.So unbelievable.Nobody is willing to step up to the plate and say “No more, be nice and learn how to behave.” Can you tell how P.O.’d I still am. Oh and BTW, my daughter has confirmed just how mean and nasty these girls are by the way she sees them act towards others and the vicious comments she has overheard them say about other girls. So sad…and so unnecessary.:(

  4. Kristen says:

    Met some MGIT in preschool last year. Surprisingly, their moms were the gossipy little clique that couldn’t bother to acknowledge those of us that weren’t interested in the bitchfest. So sad for this whole generation of little ones…

  5. Katie says:

    There are a few “best practices” schools, they have a zero tolerance policy for bullying they set the bar high and expect the kids to achieve. So far we are experiencing no bullying after transferring schools last year. Most of these schools are in impoverished inner cities many are Bill Gates Foudation schools. Their programs are incredible. And they offer real solutions for bullying and other school issues.

  6. Bailey says:

    I have also witnessed the MGIT phenomenon at the pre-school level. Last week I attended an event at a indoor playground. It wasn’t hard to pick out the “bully” girls as they terrorized other kids. And yes, their mothers were huddled in a group gossiping and not paying attention to their kids’. One of these girls walked by and took the toy my son was playing with. He put up a good fight to keep the toy but lost it in the end. I really wanted him to give her a jab but he has also been taught to be a “gentleman” (so eloquently put by a previous post). I was infuriated when the little girl screamed about the scuttle and her mom (who was across the huge facility) came to her rescue because there was a “wrong-doing” against her child. I ended shrugging it off since my last nerve was shredded and wanted out of that place.

    • Linda says:

      I know exactly how you feel and about wanting to be out of that place. I took my son out of that preschool immediately after the incident because I’d know I’d grow red every time I’d see that mother, not to mention having to examine my son’s body every day after school because of my lack of confidence in the teachers. They didn’t even know the terrors gave my son those bites!

  7. Carlene says:

    I am a grandmother that helps with picking up grandkids. I was startled watching the cruel behavior of two kindergarden age girls towards others,wasn’t so suprised when I found out the parents.The same mothers were the mean girls in school with my daughter. What bothered me most was instead of correcting the behavior the teacher removed the poor child that they were mistreating leaving them giggling.She let them get away with it. I later saw the teacher with some parents and realized she was could be considered a mean girl herself, the gossip coming out of her about other parents and kids was awful.

  8. Ruby Z says:

    And now for something completely different. My daughter is 10 and just a peach. A super nice kid. And through some gentle prompting, she’s really learning to stand up for herself, when she was having trouble before. I was never a mean girl, but I sure as hell never let a mean girl (or boy) push me around, either. I still don’t. I consistently role model that in various ways — how important being independent in one’s thoughts and deeds really is, and having confidence in that. And that is what I’m trying to hand down to my kids. It’s a tough lesson but it pays off when you teach it by example.

  9. Linda says:

    Here’s a great story to share with you all. DD1 and her classmates have restored my faith in people.

    Patrick wanted to sit between her and Kyle at lunch.  Kyle could have scooched over to make room for Patrick but chose not to and told Patrick to sit at the peanut table since he had a PB&J sandwich.  Patrick didn’t know and went to sit at the other table thinking every one with a PB&J sandwich had to sit there.  As it turned out only kids who had peanut allergies sat there so he got in trouble with the teacher.  Patrick comes back asking for the same spot.  Kyle moved over an inch.  My daughter and the other kids heard the request and moved over to make room for Patrick.  Patrick sat down and Kyle started laughing at him, which of course made Patrick cry.  That was when the kids at the table, including my daughter, started voicing their disapproval to the unkind boy.  My daughter said she felt great afterwards.  I’m so proud of her and her classmates.  I hope this kind of support for one another continues for a long, long time.

  10. Kim says:

    A great reference book (on the spiritual side) that I have read is Mean Girls by Hayley Dimarco. Great tool in teaching your own girl how to handle herself in bullying situations and understand what might be effective for her in dealing with different types of mean girls.
    Sad to see it happening at the preschool level and I do see it in the mom cliques at sports events and school events. No wonder where they get it. Can’t wait for the mean moms post!!

  11. Gail says:

    OMG, the MGIT! I’ve spotted one of those myself in my daughter’s class (she’s 11), and I’ve already told my child to stay away from her; I can sense trouble. Luckily, my daughter has a very tight-knit group of friends that are the ‘geeks’ (aka the smart girls). I will take a geek over a MG any day! I get so sick of the parental attitude that ‘my baby can do no wrong!’ and ‘I am my daughter’s best friend’. How in the world can you instill discipline in a child when you are ‘friends’??! That attitude drives me up the wall! Looking forward to the mean moms post; I can contribute a few there as well!

  12. Roxie the Outlaw says:

    Sing it sister! My daughter is graduating from high school this year and I may have a hard time not slapping some faces instead of shaking hands. Good GRIEF!

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