Girl bullying is nothing new. But the way girls bully, has drastically changed. Today girls are using relationships as a weapon to inflict damage. Isolation, backstabbing, gossiping, and spreading rumors are just a few ways these girls bully. It’s called relational aggression and it’s literally killing our daughters. This disturbing trend of social annihilation is also known as the “mean girl” phenomenon. With social media playing such an important part in everyday life, social attacks can hit social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram in a matter of seconds. The damage can often feel permanent to the victim.
“Mean Girl” bullying is often covert, so it can easily be overlooked as girl drama, or a hormonal teen’s transition into puberty. Therefore, it is not easily recognized by parents and teachers as bullying. So, how can you tell if your daughter might be a “Mean Girl”?
- Does she continually complain of girl drama she is somehow involved in, the blame, however, is always someone else’s fault?
- Does she spend obsessive amount of time on social media?
- Is she insecure? Does she struggle with envy, wanting what others have? Is she always critical of her peers, negatively complaining or pointing out flaws in other girls?
- Does she seem to have more frenemies than “real” friends?
- Is she appearance and/or status focused? Does she obsess over what others think of her?
- Is she part of an exclusive group or clique, often needing to look or act a certain way?
If you suspect your daughter might be involved in girl bullying, start paying attention to how she interacts with other girls in person and through her social media venues. Social media is one of the biggest weapons girls use to hurt other girls. You can find a more exhaustive list and advice, at The Mean Girl Extinction Project for other ways to help and protect your daughter.