Just because you’re a six year old girl doesn’t mean you’re not a jerk

7 11 2008

Kids are jerks. Even six year olds. Somehow, I had myself convinced that kids, especially little girls, didn’t turn into nasty little snots until they hit at least seven. Apparently not. There’s already a Lil’ Miss Meany Pants in Neener and Roo’s class. I know that I am a grown-up, and I should just shrug and mutter something about kids being kids, but I can not help but be filled with neck-wringing rage at the sight of this little girl.  This little girl, so sweet and innocent looking, with her long sandy braids, her dusting of freckles, her pink Disney Princess backpack, and her ever present gap-tooth grin, makes my right eye twitch and my jaw lock up. If I was two feet shorter and twenty-six years younger, I’d flick boogers at Brandee Connely.*

Brandee is not your typical bully. She is the kind of sneaky manipulative little girl bully that never gets caught or called out because the things she says and does seem so innocuous. And she’s little . And cute. And bright. And always smiling. Yet, I’ve watched this little girl send Neener into hysterics with four little words : “You forgot your glasses.” On the surface, this seems like a harmless observation. A helpful comment, even. And it may have been, the first few times. Even if she did start following up the “Neener you forgot you’re glasses” comment with the equally upsetting addition of “accidentally” calling her Roo. But one day, it sure as hell wasn’t helpful. Or an accident. Because Neener’s glasses were right there on her face when Brandee Connely grinned and chirped, ” Hey, you forgot your glasses!”. Poor naive, hysteria-prone Neener, believed her and freaked out. And Brandee Connely found it just a little too funny that Neener fell for it. As Neener reacted as Neener does to forgotten glasses, running back to us crying and screaming and pleading that we go get them, Brandee Connely put her hand over her six-year-old smirk to stifle her giggles, and turned to the kid next to her and started whispering. It took a while for Mr. and I to get Neener calmed down enough to realize that she did have her glasses, and we told her quite simply that Brandee Connely had made a mistake because it was not appropriate at the time to tell Neener that Brandee Connely is in fact, a rotten little jerk. Mistake, my ass.

If that had been the only incident with this kid, I might have been able to forgive and forget. But then I overheard this little exchange at the costume birthday party we went to:

Little ADHD boy dressed as Batman: Hey Brandee, like my costume?

Brandee, appropriately dressed as a witch: Umm. No. Don’t talk to me. You’re bad.

ADHD boy: No I’m not. I’m Batman. He’s one of the good guys.

Brandee (rolling her eyes like a know-it-all 13 year old): No, I mean in school. You’re the bad kid in our class. So, don’t talk to me.

Again, on the surface, this could have been just another call ’em like you see ’em statement from a little kid who just has not learned how to sugar coat things yet. And it’s kinda the truth. He is the ‘bad kid’ in class because he doesn’t listen to the teacher, and he can’t spell his name, and he can’t sit still for long, and he charges around the playground like a great dane that ate a bag of Ritalin spiked coffee beans. But he doesn’t lean in close to other kids and plant hurtful little words in their ears. He doesn’t cover his mouth and giggle at the sight of other kids crying because of something he said. He doesn’t whisper, or taunt, or assume he can get away with saying anything to anyone as long as it’s done with a smile, and out of adult earshot. Little ADHD boy can’t hide behind a pleasant little girl smile, and some long sandy hair, and a dusting of freckles and a pink backpack. But Brandee Connely can. And she does.

Today, she called another kid – the shyest, quietest boy in the class – “Broccoli” because he had a green umbrella. And she leaned into Neener’s friend Jonathan and whispered something to him that made him hang his head glumly and stare down at his shoes until the morning bell rang. My eye is twitching just thinking about it, not only because of what this girl is saying and doing to other kids, but because I don’t know what to do about it. Do I tell my kids flat-out that she is a mean and devious little shit the next time she takes a backhanded shot at their security? Do I run to the teacher with my evidence that this girl is an undercover bully? Or do I “accidentally” find myself eye to eye with her on the playground, close enough so that I can smile sweetly and whisper, “Mess with my kids again, and I’ve got a big yellow booger with your name on it, Brandee Connely.”

*Some names have been changed to protect the guilty.

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6 responses

7 11 2008
Katie

I vote for the “accidental” meeting and the big yellow booger warning…no one messes with our kids, not even mean little 6 year olds named Brandee Connely.

7 11 2008
Papa and nanny

By all means tell your child that this kid is a bully and she needn’t take crap from a bully. She needs to know you are on her side when she is being wronged. As for the other kid , she’s just a kid and kids live what they learn at home. Nuff said!

7 11 2008
roxferry

1st calm down and have a glass of wine.This kid is a snot! That is, one day ,going to get her come upance but not by a 30ish stalker with a red gleam of hate in her eyes..people go to jail for that..lol.There was a child(using the term loosely) in my daughters class just like little “innocent “Brandee. The kids tried to be nice to this kid but man she did every thing in her power to make them get in trouble or cry .She was just a plain spoiled little snot nose brat(and still is!).The way I dealt with it was to tell my daughter that yes she is mean, yes she is a trouble maker and no you don’t have to speak to her or hang around with her or have anything to do with her!Children(no matter how innocent) are not stupid.They know what a mean kid is!You do not have to be the sweet mom who says “Oh she is not trying to hurt your feelings”or”I am sure she didn’t mean it”…yes she did and it is okay to tell them that! As you probably figured out by now this still makes my blood boil every time I think of the shitty stuff this kid did not only to my daughter but to everyone.The good news was the teachers eventually caught on,the mother eventually realized that everyone didn’t hate her kid for no reason and best of all..in a class of 13 kids not one kid liked her or voluntarily hung out with her.To this day not one of the former 13 even speak to her….which is sad but deserved!!So my advice tell Neener the truth and let her decide what she wants to do…be the supportive mom(get ready for the school to call and say Neener is being mean to Brandee and then you get your say).So sip the wine with a know it all smile and “calmly” get ready for the teachers conference…it will come but now you will be ready for little Brandee and her crocodile tears!!!!!

11 11 2008
trish

do all three, teach neener how to defend herself, wise her up to the crap that this kid dishes out, secondly, wait for the teacher conference and out the little buggers, and as a wise clincal psychologist once said to me, wait until you are alone, and let the kid know you are on to her…… just wait, it will come.

20 11 2008
Teaching Kids Yoga

I know a few adult Brandees too. They grow up and are everywhere.

What I would do is listen. I bet your kids already know Brandee’s deal. It could be helpful to be an ear for your kids to figure out what they think and what they want to do about her. Kids have a lot of insight I’m amazed at the solutions they come up with. They may try a few things and I believe they could figure something out for themselves that works for their personities.

If kids feel they can handle situations with their own solutions it helps build their self-esteem.

There’s a whole tribe of Brandees out there so give the kids the benefit of figuring out how to deal with her, confidently and in their own way, now.

17 01 2009
Keep your enemies close… so you can chop off their arms during show and tell « Domestic Blister

[…] Or for kids with high anxiety. Or both, as the case may be. But let’s, for a moment, remember a mean little imp by the name of Brandee C. And let’s remember her obvious fondness for tormenting Neener. And let’s think about […]

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