When your daughter is the mean girl

Rosalind Wiseman, Author & Educator, shares advice for parents on what to do if they hear that their own daughter has been mean and how to correct her actions
What To Do When Your Daughter Is The Mean Girl
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When your daughter is the mean girl

So what do you do when you get information that your child has been mean? Well, it is really hard. It is really hard, because you get anxious, you get defensive. So when you’re talking to parents about this – for fear of school, or fear of parent and you’re talking to your own child – you know, what I would really suggest is focus on that this person is not a bully and they’re not a mean girl and forever they will be a mean girl. This is a moment in time where your child has done something that is not great. And so you as the parent have to address that as this is a moment where I have an opportunity to show what my values actually are in action. And it’s not about protecting her and it’s not about saying, “No, it is never going to happen.” What it’s about is saying, “If any part of this is true, then my child has to acknowledge that and take responsibility for it. But I’m not going to shame her, I’m not going to worry about the fact that she is going to be this horrible person for the rest of her life – I’m not going to come across that way. I’m going to say – these are the actions that you have done that are against what my family values are. And so these are the actions that we are going to do so that you can feel better about how you’ve conducted yourself. You might hate me while we’re doing it, but overall, you will feel better at the end of this about how you’ve conducted yourself. And you’ve done it in a way that is consistent with the way with how this family acts and believes it should stand for.” I think when you put it into a larger context like that, then even if your daughter gets really angry at you about it, she understands where you’re coming from.

Rosalind Wiseman, Author & Educator, shares advice for parents on what to do if they hear that their own daughter has been mean and how to correct her actions


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Rosalind Wiseman

Author & Educator

Rosalind Wiseman is an internationally recognized expert on children, teens, parenting, bullying, social justice, and ethical leadership. Rosalind is the author of Queen Bees and Wannabes: Helping Your Daughter Survive Cliques, Gossip, Boyfriends, and the New Realities of Girl World, the groundbreaking, fully-revised edition of her bestselling book that was the basis for the movie Mean Girls. Her follow-up book, Queen Bee Moms and Kingpin Dads, addresses the social hierarchies and conflicts among parents and is now being made into a major motion picture by New Line Cinema. In 2010, Rosalind published the  young adult novel Boys, Girls, & Other Hazardous Materials, which was recognized by the American Library Association as one of their Most Popular Paperbacks for Young Adults.  She is now writing a set of companion books for boys and their parents, scheduled for publication in the Fall of 2013. In addition, Rosalind has written the Owning Up Curriculum, a comprehensive social justice program for grades 6-12 which is in widespread use across the country.  She writes the monthly “Ask Rosalind” column in Family Circle magazine, and is regular contributor to several blogs and websites. Also, Rosalind is a spokesperson for LG’s Text-Education Council that aims to inform parents about responsible monitoring of teen cell phone usage. Each year Rosalind works with tens of thousands of students, educators, parents, counselors, coaches, and administrators to create communities based on the belief that each person has a responsibility to treat themselves and others with dignity. In 2011, she was one of the principal speakers at the White House Summit on Bullying.  Other audiences have included the American School Counselors Association, International Chiefs of Police, American Association of School Administrators, and countless schools throughout the U.S. and abroad. National media regularly depends on Rosalind as the expert on ethical leadership, media literacy, and bullying prevention.  She is a consultant for Cartoon Network’s Speak Up, Stop Bullying campaign. She is a frequent guest on the Today Show, Anderson Cooper 360 and Dateline.  She has been profiled in The New York Times, People, Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, Washington Post, USA Today, Oprah, Nightline, CNN, Good Morning America, and National Public Radio affiliates throughout the country. Rosalind holds a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from Occidental College. She lives in Washington D.C. with her husband and two sons.

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