Mean Girls?

Posted In: Coffee Break

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    unknown-user on #111321

    Do you have colleagues or fellow students who behave like “mean girls,” even if they are adults? I have had a few, or several. A flutist I know took her daughter to someone’s house for a school activity, and when the mother answered the door she said, “I don’t know you, my friends don’t know who you are, NOBODY knows anything about you.” And she slammed the door on her as she was saying, “Well, I only just moved here six months ago, so why would you?” That struck me as an example of adult “mean girl” behavior. (It was in a fairly ritzy suburb.)

    I had a colleague and friend of longstanding, who perhaps having heard I was displeased with her conduct and performance of something of mine, called me and told me this elaborate story of somebody else having said I did such-and-such to her to make her lose a gig, trying to turn me against other friends, involving them, all in some twisted way of getting back at me, rather than dealing directly, and it took quite some time for me to sort it out and realize it was all quite impossible, no matter how much conviction she put into saying it, and after reading about the behavior pattern, I realized she was “mean-girling” me. Yecch. She is over 40 years old, too.

    I’ll leave it for someone else to define “mean girl” unless no-one wants/dares to. It’s a specific social behavior pattern common among certain types of teenage girls.

    David Ice on #111322

    Trust me, Saul, some never outgrow it.

    A harpist friend of mine had a “mean girl/alleged professional harpist” deliberately sabotage the harp my friend was to play.

    Katrina Szederkenyi on #111323

    Well, all I’m going to say is that I’ve had some experiences with brides-to-be… also, I had to play in an embassy for some ritzy dinner (5 courses) and they were soooo stingy to pay me. We had arranged a price and I got paid in a sealed envelope after, yet when I checked, they’d actually paid me less than what we had arranged…. (even though they were serving filet mignon on gold plates…..)

    Sometimes the richest are the stingiest…….

    Bonnie Shaljean on #111324

    Unfortunately that’s a common problem, Katrina!

    unknown-user on #111325

    It is important to find some way to escape from overly negative and defensive/offensive behaviors. It can be baffling to encounter these things, but it does help to realize that people do a lot of projecting and reliving negative experiences. I try to remind myself that these often have nothing to do with me or the present situation. It can take a while to build people’s trust to the point that they form more accurate assumptions. Fear creates convoluted interactions that only spiral downward. Being immersed in the negativity makes it hard to not get pulled down by it. That is why I love to find a place that is completely free of these things. The quiet of nature is one escape. A loyal pet provides another reminder of how to think the best of others with ease. I love the way animals don’t hold grudges. I hope to be more like that. I’m not sure it’s possible without some escape from it though. I’m sure I’ve made mistakes that were misinterpreted as well. It takes time to break these cycles both within and around our lives. My heart does go out to people beaten down by these negative behaviors.

    unknown-user on #111326

    Ironic as it may sound, it may help to be able to not take experiencing mean behavior to heart. The person doing it may be merely acting superficially, or trivially, or in a way they feel entitled to so do by virtue of circumstance or precedent, and it most likely may have nothing at all to do with the recipient, it’s a self-reflective behavior, as I think you are identifying. Everyone is a work in progress, some may be progressing more than others, others just differently, perhaps not at all, all we can do is be the best we can be if we choose to. Even if that is the 50th percentile.

    Susan Abken on #111327

    Mean girls are usually mean girls because they learned the bullying behavior on their mother’s knee and were never corrected. The behavior was accepted by the parent, encouraged by her, and passed on to the next generation. Sad, but true.

    The best way to deal with bullying women, whether it’s the twisted gossip of a neighbor or nastiness in harp circles, is a policy of total avoidance. Sooner or later, the truth will get out.

    The older I get, the more I have been able to “thank God in all things.” There are no bullies in the Kingdom of Heaven, and if by God’s grace I manage to land there, there are certain people I will not have to put up with any longer when that fast-growing cancer or whatever strikes, and in that release of this world’s bullies is a real sense of peace, somewhere off in the future, when the battle is over. One can then smile again, with a sense of relief.

    unknown-user on #111328

    I thought it was peer instruction, perhaps allowed to develop by the mother, but mostly done at school, etc.

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