Author Topic: Little girl drama and Girl Scouts.  (Read 16574 times)

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delabela

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Re: Little girl drama and Girl Scouts.
« Reply #45 on: May 26, 2013, 12:25:51 AM »
OP here. I've had a busy day and just read through all the responses. What interest this thread has generated. Thank you all for such thoughtful comments.

I've been thinking about this all day. My co-leader wants to include her, and I totally understand why. I do feel that this girl could use some positive role modeling. I keep telling myself that I can't hold her behavior as a young girl against her her whole life.

My daughter complained about her so much for several months at the beginning of the school year. They sat in the same cluster of 3 desks for several months. My conversation with her teacher was in response to me asking about the dynamic between them, and that's when the teacher said she could be really mean, but my daughter was one of the few kids in the class that could stand up to her. That's why she hadnt moved them at that point. We kept our daughter busy all winter, but when it warmed up outside, my daughter wanted to play with her. (I don't understand what goes through her mind sometimes. Mean Girl lives on our block and is the only girl in the grade in walking distance.  DH and I were hesitant, but allowed it a few times.) while playing in our basement, she put my younger daughter (2.5yo) in the shower stall and slid the door shut while my little one cried. My older DD let her out. While this behavior isn't dangerous, I certainly think it qualifies as mean. I've heard much worse 2nd hand, but this has been my experience.

I really think she needs some guidance... I was just hoping else someone would be tasked with it.  :-\


I would not foist this young sadist onto a group of young girls.

I understand the OP's dilemma, and I appreciate that there are good points on both sides of the argument, but it really bothers me to see a 7 year old referred to in this way.

snowdragon

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Re: Little girl drama and Girl Scouts.
« Reply #46 on: May 26, 2013, 12:26:24 AM »
If she has done much worse than locking a toddler in a shower, then I would be wary of allowing her in an organization that goes camping, works with sharp instruments and ropes and more.

If I were another parent in the group and heard this kid was coming in - I'd find another troop. Sorry, but safety comes first and I think this kid could be a danger to others.


Quote
If the bully truly wishes to become a GS, her mother can start a troop and recruit girls to join (like I did).  GSUSA is always looking for more troop leaders and she would be welcome with open arms.  She is not prevented from joining GS.

This.

And for those who don't like calling a 7 year old a bully - what would be your word for a 7 year old who picks on a toddler?

ETA: What happens if she is allowed in and all the girls shun her because of her behaviour at school, do you force them partner with their tormentor?

That path can lead to all sorts of issues for both sides.
« Last Edit: May 26, 2013, 12:28:09 AM by snowdragon »

sammycat

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Re: Little girl drama and Girl Scouts.
« Reply #47 on: May 26, 2013, 12:28:59 AM »
If the bully truly wishes to become a GS, her mother can start a troop and recruit girls to join (like I did).  GSUSA is always looking for more troop leaders and she would be welcome with open arms.  She is not prevented from joining GS.

Very true. Not including her in OP's particular group isn't preventing her from joining GS completely. She's free to join any other troop who'll take her (or start her own).

CharlieBraun

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Re: Little girl drama and Girl Scouts.
« Reply #48 on: May 26, 2013, 12:55:04 AM »
Boy, what a situation and dilemma.

At first, I was of a mind that - well, you haven't experienced bad stuff first hand, please (please) give this girl a spot so she can learn what is right - socialization - so please invite her.

The locking a toddler in a shower stall is..scary.  So I retreated from my position that you should invite her in, but not completely.

Could you possibly meet with this girl, the school guidance counselor/teacher who first warned you, and a completely neutral party?  (and yes, I am wracking my brains to think of who that might be.)

May I be so bold as to ask - what do you - you - truly want to do?  I sense that you are all over the map about what is right, but tell us - what is your first, strongest, instinct?
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snowdragon

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Re: Little girl drama and Girl Scouts.
« Reply #49 on: May 26, 2013, 12:58:36 AM »
Where are the meetings held? Will your younger DD be exposed to this girl because of her involvement with the troop, at all?

LifeOnPluto

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Re: Little girl drama and Girl Scouts.
« Reply #50 on: May 26, 2013, 12:58:52 AM »
Ok, so a Troop Leader is unable to expel a misbehaving member from the Girl Scouts.

So what other rights do they have, in relation to disciplining misbehaving members? I think this is crucial. If the OP is barred (by the GS rules) from imposing real consequences (ie suspensions from meetings, not allowed to try for badges, etc) if Mean Girl acts out, that's a bad situation for the OP and the rest of the troop to be in. In which case, I would err on the side of NOT inviting Mean Girl to be part of the troop.

If there are consequences which the OP can enforce, I'd consider including Mean Girl. But if she acts out, the OP must be prepared to follow through with those consequences.


magiccat26

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Re: Little girl drama and Girl Scouts.
« Reply #51 on: May 26, 2013, 01:11:09 AM »
GS Troop leaders have about the same power as a US public classroom teacher to discipline a girl.  (Perhaps less since they don't have a Principal or other support behind them).  They cannot expel her, they can make her sit out during a specific activity (for a short age appropriate time out), but they cannot ban her from meetings or other troop activities.  You can assign an adult to shadow the girl during the meeting, to hopefully prevent an incident...however, if the parent complains up the chain (re: disciplne of their child) the troop leader ALWAYS loses.  She will be lectured about GS discipline guidelines; which encourages "proactive" discipline and puts the burden on the leader to "redirect" the girl and stop the behavior before it occurs.  A difficult task that requires some psychic ability.
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Darcy

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Re: Little girl drama and Girl Scouts.
« Reply #52 on: May 26, 2013, 01:29:11 AM »
My last word, since I can see where this is going. Bullying is ganging up on someone in a weaker position. If this girl is excluded at 7 years old, it is not she who is the bully.

I would advise her mom to "take it up he chain" until she got satisfaction.

As someone who was bullied at 7, I strongly disagree.

*inviteseller

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Re: Little girl drama and Girl Scouts.
« Reply #53 on: May 26, 2013, 01:40:09 AM »
She is 7, so let's not call her a little psychopath just yet.  OP, is it possible to talk to the mom and be honest that there has been some issues in the past and you would like to discuss things ahead of time before the girl is allowed in?  You say she is nice, but I think if you talk to her you can get a better feel of how she sees her DD.  There may be issues you don't know about (issues in the home that are causing her to act out for example).  I think she should be given a chance, because if people are willing to write her off at 7 and not give her a chance to learn and grow, then she is going to be a lost cause.  And I am really steamed that the teacher would say things about her to you.  My DD was absolutely harassed by a mean girl in 2nd grade..this girl was just downright nasty and so was her mom.  When I brought it up to the teacher, she worded it very carefully (their personalities do not mesh) without disparaging the child, which to me is the correct way to handle these things.  It sounds to me like the little girl in the OP is being written off by everyone, which will only make her act out more because she wants someone to pay attention to her.  I do understand as I was a coach for girls soccer for numerous years and dealt with cliquey behavior, bullies, criers, whiners...as much as we would love these groups to be harmonious sometimes they aren't and as a leader, we need to teach all these personalities how to work together...after all it is no different when they are in the real world as adults.

Slartibartfast

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Re: Little girl drama and Girl Scouts.
« Reply #54 on: May 26, 2013, 02:00:32 AM »
Another option, if you want to avoid confrontation - don't let ANY new girls in this year.  Say it's an attempt to change the dynamic of the troop by keeping it smaller.  Then you can point to the troop already being "full" (at its new size) instead of having to explain why you want to exclude this girl specifically.

Snooks

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Re: Little girl drama and Girl Scouts.
« Reply #55 on: May 26, 2013, 02:31:26 AM »
One thing that I think gives you an advantage is that you already know there are issues with this girl so you will be hyper aware and can addresses them and hopefully reassure your troop.  I still firmly believe you need to accept this girl.  The incident with your toddler, while scary, sounds like the sort of thing I might have done to a friend's younger sibling at that sort of age and I'm not a psychopath but I am someone who didn't deal very well with my temper as a child . My only caveat is that if you don't think the mom will back up your authority as leader with the girl.

Allyson

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Re: Little girl drama and Girl Scouts.
« Reply #56 on: May 26, 2013, 02:37:22 AM »
Yes, I do know people who did terrible things at that age and grew up to be normal, not sadistic or psychopathic or even bully-like. So, I don't think this girl should be written off forevermore. But, it would absolutely be an additional stress to deal with this girl, regardless of the reasons for her behaviour. And, while it would certainly be great if someone helped this girl--you're already doing a lot by running this troop so...I think that it's totally reasonable to not want to take that on. Not wanting to take that on doesn't mean you're saying the girl is irredeemable, just that she is troubled in ways that would be very stressful and very likely make something fun less fun.

What I wrote sounds wishy washy but I guess I'm saying, I don't see it as an *either* she's likely redeemable and with some help may improve a lot *or* she would be very hard to deal with and change the group dynamic in a bad way. I think both things can be true.

I understand everyone has different experiences that lead them to sympathize with one or the other kids, but these things can turn around so quickly, and the 'mean girls', 'nice girls' and 'outcasts' at 7 may be totally different people at 10, filling utterly different roles.

Margo

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Re: Little girl drama and Girl Scouts.
« Reply #57 on: May 26, 2013, 06:29:08 AM »
Is it possible to admit her (and the other new girls) on a probationary basis, or as guests without being memebers, for an initial period,if you can't exclude girls once they are  full members? That would allow you to gauge her suitability and ability to fit in, without  locking yourself into having her a member if she doesn't behave appropriately.

It does feel slightly uncomfortable for a girl scout troop to be thinking of a clouding a child for something she might do.


Given the rule that you cannot exclude a child for any reason once they are a member, do you have the power to impose conditions - for instance, it this girl does not behave appropriately, could you require one of her parents to attend to supervise her?

Sharnita

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Re: Little girl drama and Girl Scouts.
« Reply #58 on: May 26, 2013, 08:35:30 AM »
I do have to say that I was in GS with some really nice, sweet leaders and some nice girls and a few girls who were mean to different degrees. When we bridged up a new leader took over.  She was not exactly "sweet" - more like no-nonsense.  It didn't take long for the mean girls to clear out of their own free will. The rest of us were perfectly happy withour new leader - she wasn't the same style as the old leaders but she was good to us and she made boundaries clear.

LeveeWoman

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Re: Little girl drama and Girl Scouts.
« Reply #59 on: May 26, 2013, 08:54:27 AM »
OP here. I've had a busy day and just read through all the responses. What interest this thread has generated. Thank you all for such thoughtful comments.

I've been thinking about this all day. My co-leader wants to include her, and I totally understand why. I do feel that this girl could use some positive role modeling. I keep telling myself that I can't hold her behavior as a young girl against her her whole life.

My daughter complained about her so much for several months at the beginning of the school year. They sat in the same cluster of 3 desks for several months. My conversation with her teacher was in response to me asking about the dynamic between them, and that's when the teacher said she could be really mean, but my daughter was one of the few kids in the class that could stand up to her. That's why she hadnt moved them at that point. We kept our daughter busy all winter, but when it warmed up outside, my daughter wanted to play with her. (I don't understand what goes through her mind sometimes. Mean Girl lives on our block and is the only girl in the grade in walking distance.  DH and I were hesitant, but allowed it a few times.) while playing in our basement, she put my younger daughter (2.5yo) in the shower stall and slid the door shut while my little one cried. My older DD let her out. While this behavior isn't dangerous, I certainly think it qualifies as mean. I've heard much worse 2nd hand, but this has been my experience.

I really think she needs some guidance... I was just hoping else someone would be tasked with it.  :-\

In response to the bolded parts:

You will not be holding her behavior against her her whole life.  You will be making a decision to protect the  girls who already are in your troop from someone who has been mean to them as well as to a toddler.

Isn't guiding the girl her mother's job?  Isn't  your jobas a mother to protect your daughter, and as a troop leader, the girls already under your authority?