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I need advice! My 6-year-old has been having some problems with another little girl who is 8. They practice at different locations of the same gym, so they only see each other at meets and other gatherings of the team.

The other little girl keeps saying very mean things to my daughter. She makes fun of her hair at meets and tells her things like, "You don't belong on Team." This has been going on now for many months, and I have observed it myself.

I think the problem stems from the fact that this other little girl was the cutest, littlest one on Level 4 last year. This year, she is repeating Level 4. My daughter is now the youngest one on the team, and all of the older girls are always telling her how cute and talented she is. I think that makes the other girl mad.

At first, I told my daughter to try to be friendly to the other girl, but that only seemed to make things worse. So then I told her to just ignore her. The other girl still comes and find her to make faces and ugly comments to her. My daughter beat her on beam at the last meet, and that made her really mad. She told her, "Your routine was horrible. You didn't deserve that score."

I want the comments to stop so my daughter can focus on her gymnastics. What should I do?

1. Leave the whole situation alone and let the girls try to work it out

2. Say something to the 8-year-old, reminding her that they are on the same team

3. Talk to the other girl's mother (I don't know her at all)

4. Talk to my daughter's coach about the problem

5. Talk to the other girl's coach about the problem

Help me, Chalk Bucket parents....I need advice!


Gold Membership
Feb 26, 2007
I have to say I'd talk to your DD's coach about the issue, tell it just the way you wrote it. That behaviour is unacceptable and no child should be treated like that. This 8 year old is bullying a 6 year old, it needs nipping in the bud. This kind of bullying is very prevalent amongst girls and is so painful to watch and deal with.

I cannot imagine any coach would want his or her team soured by poor attitude. I know at our gym anything of this sort is frowned on big time, lectures are given and long chats with gymmies and parents had.

I wish you good luck on this one, just don't let it fester any longer. Your DD is very talented it would be such a shame for her to become discouraged because of one self absorbed child.


Proud Parent
Mar 9, 2008
Sounds like the green eyed monster is alive & well in this little girl! Such a shame! There is no way your young DD should have to put up with this! There have been certain ones all along the way that my DD has had to deal with. When your talented...some just can't deal with it(being little & cute with a great personality that really sends these mean girls off the deep end!LOL). I've tried just about everything on your list over the years...sometimes it helps...sometimes it doesn't. DD is 13yrs and is still dealing with this same issue(new mean girls/moms have joined our gym)! But at least she is old enough now to see it for what it is....pure jealousy! My DD has learned(sadly), that there will always be mean girls in this world. What a sad lesson to have to learn:(! And she is dealing with these new ones...her plan... beating them at the meets! LOL!!! But, I would say you must intervene here, your DD is too young to have to put up with this abuse alone. I'd start by talking to the coaches & let them have a discussion about what it means to be a "TEAM". Good luck! I feel so bad for your DD!!!!:(
4. Talk to my daughter's coach about the problem :yes:

And ask her to:
5. Talk to the other girl's coach about the problem

If that doesn't work - talk to the Gym owner. And Be firm.

I wouldn't stand for it myself. There is far to much time, money, and effort put into the sport already. Your DD doesn't need any additional challenges. Especially from some little brat.


Proud Parent
Feb 19, 2007
DEFINITELY talk to the coach. Unfortunately, this happens in every gym and at every level. There is no room on a team for a mean spirited, envious trouble maker. And it DOES cause trouble. It's also a maturity issue as well. Some kids think they have to be the best and most perfect all of the time. They need to learn that there will ALWAYS be someone out there who is more talented, in ANYTHING they do. But for now, it just ruins the morale of the rest of the group. And yes, coaches can sometimes be oblivious to this kind of behavior if the child is "smart" enough to hide it!



Proud Parent
Proud Parent
Sep 25, 2007
Everyone else had the right idea, so I will just agree with them all and say there are mean girls everywhere. Our coaches have had talks with the girls before when one mom went to them with issues with her DD and another girl. They didn't single them out, but talked about how it wasn't to be tolerated, etc, in general to everyone.

I don't think I would personally talk to the parents first. A lot of this often comes from the parents at home as well. The parents could be jealous of your DD as they were living through their DDs successes/popularity before and now your DD is there and "taking away" that spotlight from their DD. Kids get a ton of their own attitudes and thoughts from their parents. Parents could be putting pressure on this child to "not let the little 6 year old" do better than her, etc. It sounds crazy, but it isn't.

Hope they resolve it. I always tell my DD that there will always be mean kids. I do explain that a lot of times, they are jealous or feeling insecure and that is why they do it. That it doesn't make it right, but to just avoid that girl and try to just kill her with kindness. Most of all not to let her see it bothers you, because usually they give up. She has had some issues with older girls doing this a few times, but it hasn't been bad enough to talk to the coach and it has worked itself out.

gym law mom

Proud Parent
Dec 23, 2006
Yes, sounds like a big case of jealousy and one wonders if it is starting at home and the child(8yo) is bringing it into the gym or the girl is the source. Many kids are under enormous pressure from parents at home to excel and if this little girl was the "cute and talented one" last year and had to repeat L4, she could be catching heck at home. That doesn't excuse her behavior toward your dd though. Behavior is learned though.

I agree with the others in talking with your dd's coach. If for no other reason than this could cause problems within the team----must be tough pulling kids together at meets only and then you don't need the nasty attitude. Maybe having your dd's coach talk with the other child's coach will shed some light on why all this got started in the 1st place and shut it down----quickly I hope for your dd's sake.


Proud Parent
Oct 26, 2007
I agree with everyone else. Get the coaches involved. My 7 year old was having trouble with a class mate early this year and we tried to help her work though it and tried to give her a lot of way to handle it. This really didn't work out to well. At this age they are just too young to handle it. We finally involved the teacher and it got much better. Not only did the teacher talk to the boy involved but she did a great job just of keeping an extra eye on this boy so that there weren't further problems.


I absolutely would discuss it with her coach. With a little girl this type of thing can make her not want to go to gymnastics. You are probably right about this girl being upset that your dd stole some of her thunder. Through the years I have seen some of that and usually when something is mentioned to the coach they are very quick to address it and make sure it stops. Good luck - I hope the problem gets resolved.


Moderator/Proud Parent
Aug 25, 2007
North Carolina
4. Talk to my daughter's coach about the problem :yes:

And ask her to:
5. Talk to the other girl's coach about the problem

If that doesn't work - talk to the Gym owner. And Be firm.

I wouldn't stand for it myself. There is far to much time, money, and effort put into the sport already. Your DD doesn't need any additional challenges. Especially from some little brat.

Tim_Dad took my answers :D

Our HC would not tolerate this behavior and has nipped it in the bud before. The child needs to learn that this is not ok and her coach and mom need to be aware of what is going on.
Sep 30, 2008
Region 3
Aww, I'm so sorry to hear this! I don't have much to add to the other excellent advice. I just wanted to lend my sympathy & support because it breaks my heart to hear about these things.

If you try number one, they may never work it out and it could get uglier before it ever gets better. I think number 2 would go right over the other girls head and number 3 could just turn really nasty. If you knew the mother that could be an option but since you don't there is no telling how this mother make take the news that her dear daughter is a little turd. You may just find out where the girl gets it from! eek!

I agree talking with your daughter's coach is the best thing to do. I would think most coaches would nip it quickly before it got out of hand.


Proud Parent
Aug 16, 2008
Aw, I am so sorry that this is happening. Like the other posters, I vote for talking to the coaches. I'd mention it to both coaches so they can both keep their eyes out for any bad behavior. It's their job to address things like this. I'd be hesitant to talk to the mom...because, unfortunately, you just never know what you are going to get there!:rolleyes:A good coaching staff will NOT tolerate this behavior. And, I honestly don't believe a 6 year old and 8 year old should be left to work it out on their own. Having an almost 8 year old, I know that she wouldn't be able to deal with something like this on her own.

Good luck. Hope something can be done soon about this behavior.
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