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Look for signs like:
- school dissatisfaction or school refusal
- repeated conversations about troubles with certain girls
- a big change in her social life, like not getting calls or invitations like before
- acting more insecure/less confident around friends
- the loss of good friends
- after school meltdowns
- symptoms of emotional overload
Girls will worry about friendship dramas at night and in the mornings, and they start spending an inordinate amount of time on social media to stay current.
Signs a girl may be a mean girl victim include:
- She is “picked on,” shunned, or excluded often. Every girl will be picked on or left out, but if you hear this complaint more than a few times take your daughter seriously. Bullying is a usually a repeated behavior that always has a negative intent. Once a girl becomes a target, she often is repeatedly targeted. Watch for a repeated pattern.
- She displays a pattern of wishy-washy, on-and-off again “friendships.”
- She speaks negatively about certain girls or a certain group of girls or clique.
- She suddenly withdraws. She starts pulling away from things she once enjoyed. She is lonely.
- She doesn’t speak of having any friends. No one calls, texts, emails or invites her over (not for one day or one weekend but as a general pattern). Remember, popularity is a myth. Girls don’t need lots of friends, but they do need one or two loyal buddies. The red flag here is if your daughter has no friends, or had friends and suddenly “lost” them.
- She suddenly avoids certain social situations. She doesn’t want to go to school or take part in the scouting, church group, soccer club, 4-H or other group activities she once enjoyed.
- She seems jittery, concerned or even afraid when an email, text, message, or phone call comes for her. She may quickly cover up the computer screen or refuse to answer a text or personal call.
- She has a sudden change in her eating or sleep habits. She suddenly complains of stomach or headaches or the inability to focus or concentrate. She can’t sleep or sleeps much longer. Her grades take a dip.
- She starts to speak about girls in a mean way. She adopts the attitude and behavior of a mean girl. Beware: victims can switch and become the bully if not helped.
This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.