Dear Sue Ellen,
My daughter is in the 5th grade and she wants to be a cheerleader so I signed her up for a gymnastics class. A girl in the class is being very mean to my daughter. They go to the same school, and the mean kid told my daughter she would never make the cheerleading team because she is ugly and nobody likes her. Now my daughter wants to quit gymnastics. She is so hurt by this. Should I call that girl’s parents?
Dear Worried Mom,
Have you ever seen people that want something really bad and start working toward that goal until it gets hard and they change their mind and give up? Why do they give up? I have talked to some experts about this, and it seems the general belief is people give up because they are defeated. If your daughter truly wants to do this, she shouldn’t give up because some snotty girl said something mean. As her parent, you have to believe in her and help her to remain undefeated.
I once asked a big-shot business person what was his secret to success. His reply was “don’t give up”. People that are successful have failed like the rest of us, but they get back up. If they fail again, they get back up again. Highly successful people are fearless. They are willing to put all their energy into a goal or dream. If they don’t reach that goal, they make a new goal and go after it. In other words, they are not defeated.
As her mom, are you defeated? I am sure you know that kids learn how to navigate through life by watching the adults around them. Do you make goals and stick to them, even when it gets hard?
Here’s my wish for you and your daughter. Be undefeated! Help your daughter to focus on doing the best she can in her gymnastic class and celebrate all the new things she learns to do along the way. Focus on the positives. If the mean girl becomes a bully and threatens your daughter, you will have to intervene. That would be the time to tell the owner of the gym, and if that doesn’t work, tell the mean girl’s parents. They may be bullies too, so stand your ground, be courteous and don’t back down. Be Victorious!
Please email your parenting questions to firstname.lastname@example.org and put “Parent’s Corner on the subject line.