My daughter is nine years old and very squeamish. She always has been. She throws up if she sees or smells vomit, and faints at the sight of blood.
Last week a friend of hers came for a sleepover. They were having the best time, dancing and making TikTok videos. Her friend did a cartwheel and when she stood up, her nose was bleeding. My daughter screamed, fainted briefly and then ran to her room crying.
Her friend was fine, says it happens all the time, and stopped the flow herself. Clearly an expert – and completely unfazed. But my daughter wouldn’t come out of her room. I had to call the little girl’s parents to come and get her.
When the parents arrived, which was a long hour and a half later, the mother was cold and unsympathetic to the situation. I apologized on my daughter’s behalf, but the woman huffed in disgust, took her daughter and left.
I figured it would all blow over, but heard a few days later from another mom that she was badmouthing both me and my daughter to anyone who would listen in the school parking lot. And when my daughter came home from school, she was clearly upset and explained how some of the other kids were making fun of her.
Luckily, the friend was standing up for my daughter, but this whole thing has gotten out of hand. What do I do?
When reading your question, my first reaction was to let that other woman’s negativity roll off your back. Who knows what was going on when you called and what situation you dragged her away from. But for her to continue and badmouth you to other people who had nothing to do with the situation is unkind and unnecessary.
I suggest calling her up, apologize again for having to send her daughter home earlier than expected (though you shouldn’t have to, it will set the tone for a nicer conversation), and then ask why she’s still so upset. I doubt she’ll have a good reason. Also, mention how nice it is that her daughter is sticking up for yours since other kids are now making fun of your daughter.
It should all blow over, but if not, you may have to call the school.
My brother’s girlfriend lost her dog while out walking in the woods behind our house. It somehow got loose from its leash and ran off chasing a rabbit. The woods go very deep and get very thick. There’s no way we can all spread out and find the dog, but I still thought it was worth a try.
So, the girlfriend, me, my mom and my little sister all went out trying to find the dog. My brother didn’t help us. We didn’t find the dog, it’s been about a week, and I’m sure it got eaten by a wolf or coyote by now.
My brother’s girlfriend is inconsolable and won’t come over. But my brother is showing major signs of insensitivity. He never helped us look for the dog, didn’t help us post anything on social media, and barely showed his girlfriend any love.
I think she should break up with him. What do you think?
With such little information, biased as it may be, I would have to agree with you. Whether your brother is a “dog-person” or not, it’s about emotional support for someone you love in their time of need/crisis. If he can’t give of himself now, there’s not much hope for a future together, through life’s ups and downs.
FEEDBACK Regarding the woman who was concerned because her teenage daughter did not like the new family dog (April 6):
Reader – “She mentions the puppy was needed as a therapy dog for their eight-year-old son. She says after six months, ‘it's the best gift they could have given him.’ But their daughter wants nothing to do with the dog. I agree with your advice that as long as the daughter isn't mistreating or hurting the dog, they should be fine. However, perhaps the daughter is simply jealous.
“Not knowing the dynamic of the family it's difficult to determine, but often a younger child is afforded more attention; in this case, there could be added attention because of the new puppy/therapy dog that the boy ‘needed.’
“Teenagers can be difficult to deal with on many levels, so perhaps the best thing the parents could do is talk to their daughter about her needs.”