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I had a horrible situation with my 6 yr old at school and when we read this book she said that's what xx does to me! It was the first chance she had where she felt she could open up Really great book thank you
My seven year old enjoyed reading this and we discussed it afterwards. It is helping her understand the toxic friendship she has with her so called best friend and is learning ways to manage the friendship in a positive way.
Although I have heard some people complaining about the illustrations in this book, I'm more interested in the content.
This is a very well written book about bullying for the special, hard to tell bullying that happens usually within girl cliques. It covers relational aggression- when you have a friend who is a friend sometimes, but randomly pits other people against you, or excludes or ridicules in order to get power for themselves. They usually use fear of exclusion to get people to do what they want, but can be perfectly sweet when alone, which makes it even more confusing. They don't mention it in the book, but the bully in this book also uses gaslighting- pretending nothing is wrong or something is wrong with you for thinking something is wrong.
The happy ending comes when our main character tells the bully exactly what she wants to say, without becoming a bully herself. She then finds a new group of friends who are supportive and like her just the way she is, explaining that real friends don't treat people the way her 'friend' did.
There are notes and resources for parents and teachers to read as well, and discussion ideas to have with children about what happened in the book to help them think and learn about what they have just read. Parents and teachers NEED to be active participants in their children's lives, bullying behavior is enforced when it is ignored and can cause a lifetime of problems. Instead of "standing up" to the bully (which rarely works) or ignoring the bully (which also doesn't really work), adults need to deal with the problem. Unfortunately some parents are bullies themselves and do not care about their child's behavior, and some schools tend to persecute the victim instead of the bully. There needs to be more discussion and better solutions.
This was a great book and I recommend it for children who are subjected to this particular type of confusing behavior. It's a great tool to raise awareness to this problem and while it will not solve every problem it will help clarify the issue and help others feel they are not alone if they have experienced this.