For Parents Middle school drama + Gymnastics

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Proud Parent
Aug 9, 2021
My daughter just started middle school in a new town. Being the new kid she got alot of unwanted attention. She is kind of shy and keeps to herself. On her first day of school she had to get picked up at 12:30 since her summer scedule was still going on. When she came back the next day a group of girls started pressuring her about telling them why. She didnt want to since at her old school when she told people the called her a show off. Later that day they had gym. In her school everyone has to change into gym clothes. All the girls had one room so my daughter went to the corner since she was really self conscious. When she was changing a coulple girls saw her training bra and started to make fun of her when now one was around. They called her a baby and by the time gym ended she was in tears. Luckily it was time for her to leave for practice. She was carpooling with one of her gymnastics friends and her mom. Her friend asked what was wrong and my daughter told her. Her mom emailed me what was going on. By the time she got to the gym she felt way better. Later during her practice when everyone was doing tumbleing she and her friend were having trouble landing. One of kids from her school showed up. She started saying mean stufflike”The baby cant even do anything well”. But when there coach came over she acted really nice. Since she was new she didnt say anything to anyone. When I picked my daughter and her friend up my daughter was crying and her friend was being so nice and trying to make her feel better. During the car ride she told me all of this. I really feel bad for her. We told the school and they are going to deal with wats going on but I dont know what to say to her coach.
I would start just by telling the coach that there have been some issues at school and to please keep an eye on daughter while she adapts to all the changes. If the coach would like additional information about the issues at school that could spill into gymnastics you would be happy to have an in person conversation.

I think an in person conversation would best capture your concern for your daughter and show it is not an attempt to bad mouth another kid. I would try and present the info to the coach as neutrally as possible, don't make it sound like you are badmouthing the other kid (even though they may deserve it) but I think it you present it as this is what my DD said was said and this is how it made her feel, your coach will see you are not trying to stir up drama. I would maybe say something to the effect of Middle School is had because how kids behave around each other is not always how they behave around adults and you would appreciate it if the coach kept an eye out for tension in the group.
Why was the girl from school (who was teasing) at your daughter's gym? Is she also a gymnast there? Just trying to understand if there could be a long-term issue with tension between the girls at the gym.
If this is happening at school, call the Principal immediately. Schools have very strict rules regarding harassment and bullying, and if girls are tormenting your daughter, especially in a place as vulnerable as a locker room, this needs to be addressed.
It sounds like one girl from both school and gym is initiating all this. Schools mostly take this very seriously. Getting the school involved should stop the in school stuff, and definitely let the coach know that this girl is bullying your child at both gym and school.
If this continues definitely alert the school - they have a responsibility to ensure your daughter's emotional safety. I don't know if this will help you but one my my DDs had a problem in 6th grade when some classmates became jealous of my daughter as she left school half an hour early every day. They didn't think it was fair that she got to have 'fun' whilst they were in school. I'm not sure if your daughter's problems stem from this or maybe the other students having problems adapting to a newbie... I'm not clear has your daughter told them she's a gymnast?
Anyways my daughter explained to those classmates that gym was hard work although a different type of work to school and that somehow settled it. She makes sure not to brag about gym etc. in school b/c she knows kids are jealous.
Good luck to your daughter!
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