#LuckyLinky Week 75
15th October 2018
Cleaning Up: Ace Clean UK Review
16th October 2018
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I can quite clearly remember at school that I felt odd about friends. I never settled in one group of friends for too long because the inevitable would always happen that the people I thought were my friends would end up bullying me.
I wasn’t smart enough to be a geek, wasn’t skinny enough to be popular and wasn’t quick witted enough to be a bitch so I was kind of a nomad.
I had more bullies than friends and 20 years on, there is only one I have a little contact with. I went to two different colleges and again all that came from there were Facebook friends and the odd tag.
University saw me come out with 3 friends I stay in touch with but lives get in the way. However at uni still I wasn’t at all popular and was very low on the groups food chain.
I’ve accepted this. It is what it is. I have a handful of friends now who are lovely and worth making time for. What I stupidly wasn’t expecting was coming face to face with cliques and bullying/ pack like behaviour as a mummy.


Five weeks ago, Alyssa and I bravely walked into a room that was heaving with parents and children running this way and that. She clung onto me and I could tell she felt the same as me. She’d wanted to do dancing so much but this would have been overwhelming for anyone. I stayed in class with her that first week but after ten minutes I knew she’d be fine.

Week 2, I sat out with all the other parents as armed with her ballet shoes, leotard and bun my little one marched into a group of children all dressed the same and stated “Hi, I’m Alyssa.” So much braver than her mummy and thankfully they accepted her and she’s been happy ever since and usually the first through the classroom door. I sat by myself that 2nd week wishing the ground would swallow me up. Smiling at those who looked and reminding myself I was here for my child.

The third week, I noticed a small area for Alyssa’s class had formed and I bravely found a spot with them and said hello. They talked and smiled and asked me questions and I breathed a sigh of relief. I’d done it. I’d made it into the group.
Arriving the following week I sat down ready to chat and was met with smiles but no hellos. Once the children were inside they quite pointedly turned away and began a conversation and I just sat there. I couldn’t believe it. A new mum had turned up and I spoke with her. But the following week is where you find me now.

I’m sat with them but not with them. They’ve separated their table and pulled away. They were looking for a spare chair and I offered them the one next to me and they took it without so much as a thank you. The only thing that has been said to me today is… “You’re a single mum right? So does she see her father?”

I answered politely, put Alyssa in class and sat back on my chair. Was this really why I wasn’t good enough in their eyes to sit with them, talk with them, my child to play with them?

a mother and daughter holding hands walking along the beach at sunsetI know that in the grand scheme of things these people don’t matter. If being a single mum or fat or uncool or not “their kind of people” is a problem for them then it’s their problem. But it makes me sad. Whatever in their eyes is wrong with me I don’t want Alyssa to be painted with that same brush. It’s not fair. Though actually, it’s not fair on me either.

We’re at a time in this world when women are finally starting to make a stand and fighting back against inequality, oppression, sexual harassment and much more and taking an equal place in the world. Yet despite all this, women themselves still think it’s okay to segregate someone on a flash judgement or understanding of who or what they really are. It makes me think that these women are the ones that were the bullies at school and still as adults have no idea of the emotional damage they inflict on other people by being snide or dismissive. Or perhaps like me they were the bullied and rather than trying to be kind and inclusive they’re now getting their revenge and becoming the bully. Who knows.

a woman in a dark jacket leaning against a wall surrounded by shadows

What I do know is that at some point, not right now as I’m not brave enough, women need to be told if they’re doing this. You’ll always get groups and cliques and people being closer to some than others but this doesn’t mean that you need to be snide, dismissive, rude, condescending, ignorant towards others. What harm would it do to say hello and ask how are you?
Thankfully at the moment I only have to survive 45 minutes a week with these women but with what look like years ahead of me as a Dance Mum it looks like I’ve been lumbered with some of the clones from the American TV show of the same name.
Get it together women. Put the bitch back in the box. Don’t tear each other down. Be kind. Be inclusive and for God’s sake be polite and say hello. It won’t kill you.

24 Comments

  1. Kim Carberry says:

    Ugh! It’s not fair! Why do people have to be so mean and rude. What sort of example are they setting to their children.
    Just remember you are the better person. They don’t sound like the type of people I’d want to be friends with anyway. lol x

  2. Tracey Abrahams says:

    This is a story I’ve heard many times from my twitter friends and is why I often say I don’t like people very much.
    #ablohginggoodtime

  3. Sarah says:

    Most of the mum’s at R’s school are like this – luckily there are a couple of gems! Chin up, who’d want to be friends with a bunch of c***s anyway?!?

  4. Jo says:

    Why be like this? They sound like they are very insecure. Do you really want to be friends with those kind of people anyway? In truth I am worried that this is how I will find being a Mum in the playground! #ABloggingGoodTime

  5. Amy Downes says:

    I tend to gravitate towards the Mums that like wine… they’re my kind of people! I hope you are okay, it takes so much bravery to go to these groups, it’s hard when no-one is kind enough to even say hello. #blogginggoodtime

  6. It is tough … we just can’t get on with everyone … I’m a bit of a believer in the old maxim that I wouldn’t want to be part of a club that wouldn’t have me as a member! It might sound obvious, but I would bring a book if you are feeling nervous, but of course be ready to put it down and say hello, or respond if approached. #ABlogggingGoodTime

  7. Anne says:

    Oh I’ve had this sort of treatment all my life and it really isn’t nice. Once at uni I walked into the shared kitchen on the campus and said hello to the group of women already there and they looked at me, then carried on with their conversation without even saying hello back. As the years have gone by I’ve become much less bothered about what people think of me, and definitely less bothered about pleasing them. I don’t want to be friends or talk to women like this. I do, however, make an effort to spot the women who looks out of place and lonely and speak to her. If I can stop one person feeling like this then I know for sure I am the better person. x
    #blogginggoodtime

  8. Modern Gypsy says:

    It’s really tough dealing with these things! I’ve been the odd one out through school and Uni, and I tend to keep to myself now, too. Luckily I have a few really good friends, but most of the time I find people can be really mean if you don’t fit into their boxes and labels.

  9. So sad when people are so insecure or self-centered that they lose sight of the Image of God in others.

  10. I absolutely hate this and dealt with it when my kids were little and in Girl Scouts. Some of these women have their noses so far up in the air they will drown if it comes a good rain!

    It is completely inappropriate and honestly, their daughters are probably just like them.

  11. Rosie Doal says:

    The one thing I have learned over the years is that mean girls will always be mean girls no matter how old they get. They forget that there are people with real feelings and emotions who will worry themselves silly that they have done something wrong. They haven’t. It’s the mean girls who have something wrong with them! #ABloggingGoodTime

  12. Laurie says:

    So sad to see women being divisive, rather than working as a community! We need to stick together!

  13. I know exactly how you feel. My daughter began her dance school in Spetember and has an amazing reputation so I was aware it may be a bit pretentious. The waiting area has 2 rooms and then a group of chairs in the hallway. My daughter is newly adopted and needs me to be right outside the room for now. The other week there were 3 spare chairs and I asked if I could sit there – I was told they were reserved for someone getting her layers done and coming in late. I don’t know why but I went into my childhood self mode and retreated to sitting on the steps. I’m far from glamourous, I’m carrying extra weight but I can actually be interesting to talk to. It really is like Mean Girls. I sat on the steps and made friends with a toddler instead. HIs parents are happy to chat to me and he lets me play with his cuddly toy 🙂

  14. People can be so horrible, I have made to feel like an outcast and it makes you feel rubbish X #ablogginggoodtime

  15. Kate says:

    It’s so sad reading something like this, sadly I think most people can relate to at least some of it, I wish people weren’t so mean. Lots of love!

  16. I have been there. Not sure why or why I even cared but it still does sting. #ablogginggoodtime

  17. Unfortunately there will always be cliques who are not open to welcoming new members. I hope this is just a case of early days and as time progresses things will change for you, in the meantime I would continue to smile, offer up small talk, be friendly and have a book or your ipad to hand for any moments when you are alone. Wishing you luck.

  18. I experience this at my son’s school and it sucks because adults should be able to talk to each other. I have actually had parents walk away from me after they asked me what I do and I said that I’m between jobs. They ACTUALLY WALKED AWAY. They definitely know how to make someone feel unwanted. As much as it annoys me though and embarrasses me to be treated like that, I am confident in who I am and I know my son has some really great friends. I am friends with a couple of those kids parents too so I got lucky with that. I would just bring headphones or a book. If you are doing something else that shows them that they aren’t bothering you. Even if it does, they don’t need to know that. Don’t give them an inch, that’s my motto. #ABloggingGoodTime

  19. Helena says:

    Ah what is wrong with women! There certainly is no need for ‘I’m not like you’ so I’m not going to bother with you. It’s great to be different and help each other out. #ablogginggoodtime

  20. Lucy At Home says:

    Urrgh this sounds horribly familiar. My daughter started a new school halfway through the year. There was a mum’s meet-up a few weeks after she started and I plucked up the courage to go (even though I didn’t know anyone). The evening went really well and I chatted to loads of people – I thought I had been accepted into the group…. that was 2 years ago and 95% haven’t said 2 words to me since! And the other 5% have only been passing “hellos” on the way to stand with their REAL friends. It’s really tough 🙁 I hope you have better luck with your dance mums…

    Anyway your post obviously resonated with someone else too because they chose to add it to the BlogCrush linky for you. Hurray! Feel free to pop over and grab your “I’ve been featured” blog badge 🙂 #blogcrush

  21. I get so angry with women, exactly as you said we are supposed to be coming together, fighting for equality and yet women can be so mean to each other! I just don’t get it, I mean sure we are not going to get along with everyone but for fucks sake don’t be a bitch! I like you always worry more how it will affect my kids, it is primarily the reason there are certain groups I would never tell about my previous domestic abuse relationship because I don’t want them keeping their daughters away from mine, even though I did nothing wrong and my husband now is the most gentle creature on earth. Until women stop being bitches I fear we will struggle as a society to make the real positive changes we need. Come together and support each other, we all have been through shit, no one has had a perfect life, we are all flawed, stop pretending we are not. I hate that you have to sit through that. Dance world is competitive and can be harsh. Good luck beautiful xx

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