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on August 23, 2010
As a clinical psychologist, I find that parents are often stuck between a rock and a hard place when it comes to supporting their daughters' social struggles. And so often, educators and counselors are stuck in the same hard place with helping support these parents, or in supporting the girls themselves.

FINALLY there's a guide that does it all: gives parents a simple easy plan to support girls' friendship fights while at the same time gives them the tools to help manage social cruelty! Even better, integrated throughout are Teacher Tips and Tips for Girls with ideas and activities to reach girls in grades K-6. The flow of the book is anecdotal, very readable, and non-alarmist.

In fact, it will help you finally understand why girls act the way they do, and know what to do about it. This book is for anyone who works with or cares about girls from ages 5-12. It's become the first book I recommend to parents in my clinical practice with elementary aged girls. I love it!
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on August 22, 2012
I have an elementary school age daughter who can be on both sides of girl troubles: the girl who gets upset by her friends and also upsets her friends. I was hoping this book can give me insights on how to navigate both sides well, but was disappointed.

The book seems to be all about "standing up to your friend who can be a bully" without defining what "bully" really is. I see certain amount of friction that kids go through as necessary part of learning and growing as long the friction is short term, and the child is not always the victim. But, I got the feeling that the authors didn't think so. They seem to think that all social struggles deserved close adult attention and how all these social struggles have lasting effects to girls.

The anecdotes in the book was realistic and typical of elementary age girls, but there wasn't much useful information for me on how to deal with it.
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on August 17, 2010
Little Girls Can Be Mean is an easy, informative read. It had so many tips and strategies for anyone who deals with girl aggression or "mean girl" stuff. The best part is it addresses issues with younger girls, as opposed to only dealing with middle school girls. I learned so much about WHY meanness happens at these early ages and how to empower girls to deal with it instead of being overwhelmed by it or becoming mean themselves. It's about time!
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on August 24, 2010
As a grandparent, I was so glad to find this book! It seems girls are so much meaner today than when my kids were growing up and already I am hearing terrible stories from my granddaughters. Before, I would say things like, "try not to let it bother you," or "she's not very nice...find a different friend." But it was mostly because I didn't know what to say. Now I do! The book walks you through the how and why of meanness, but in a way that makes you feel like you can actually do something about it! The Four Step plan is simple and gives me options in terms of when, where, and how much to go into things at any given point. For me, as a grandparent, I use Steps one and two the most: seeing things in new ways and connecting, instead of jumping in and trying to fix it all. I can't think of a more important book for elementary school girls!
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on June 1, 2011
I'm really glad I bought this book, as it was an easy read about an interesting topic. I found the stories and guidance straightforward and sensible.
As the mother of a 6yo girl, I have been witness to "mean girls" for a number of years already. No doubt there will be many more years of it to come....
Prior to reading this book, I would have told my daughter to "not play with mean girls" or "tell the teacher" if someone bullies you. I realise now this was not such helpful advice.
Instead I take the time to discuss what's specifically happening, ask her how she feels about such events, and what she thinks she can do differently in the future.
I am convinced this ongoing dialogue and role play, will reassure her that I am genuinely listening and "on her side" and also equip her with techniques and coping strategies for difficult situations.
I highly recommend this book to parents and caregivers of girls wanting an insight into what's going on, why, and how to deal with it. A necessary addition to your parenting book collection....
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on August 21, 2010
Little Girls Can Be Mean by Michelle Anthony and Reyna Lindert is a very helpful book by these two experts in the field of psychology and parenting, authors of several other books. And each of these moms has three children, so they speak from first hand experience also. The book tells four steps to helping young girls learn how to be kind to other girls and how to keep themselves from being devastated when other girls are not kind to them. With advice to parents and teachers to Observe, Connect, Guide, and Support to Act, the authors give many good examples for ages 5 - 12 of what is actual behavior of girls toward each other, at home and at school and other groups. There are many useful techniques to learn in this book of how to help your daughter protect herself and also learn how to deflate these troubling encounters. With the use of playing games, and talking, empathizing, and sharing personal experiences parents can guide their daughters through the minefield of growing up and inter-personal relationships with friends and siblings. Each chapter has boxes of information that are written directly to the child and other boxes of directed to the adult...each has good suggestions and observations and ideas to practice. This is a very good tool for any home or teacher.
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on August 29, 2013
I bought this book to help my daughter with some friend drama she was experiencing (she's 10) and I only got a few chapters into it before I got what I needed out of it. Basically, if you need help with communication in general, this is a good book. It's pretty basic and it goes over common sense general practices like talking with your young daughter (as soon as she's verbal, even) about her feelings. It's kind of a no-brainer for some people (like me) but I could see it being helpful to those who haven't ever thought of being empathetic to their preschooler about understanding why she acts the way she does, how it feels when friends act a certain why, and how it feels when she acts a certain way towards others. I don't know if it's worth buying, it would depend entirely on your situation. It did help to know that what my daughter is going through is normal but that it's important to still provide guidance instead of just leaving her to attempt to wade these painful waters alone and shrugging it off as kids/girls being cruel.
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on March 6, 2011
This book is extremely well written. It is easy to read with very practical hands on ideas that you can use right away. I like how it presents various type of situations and how a parent, teacher and even the child can deal with what is happening. I really like how the author tries to help you see both sides (the mean girl and the girl she's being mean to). I also like how the emphasis in the book is the relationship between the parent and child and what can be done to strengthen that bond so that you can be your child's best ally in helping them deal with what is going on. This book was written about girls but you could use the same problem solving techniques in any situation no matter what the gender. Another feature that I like is that it assumes that the child may even read along with you and the book actually speaks to them and gives them ideas that they can use to help them to successfully navigate the trouble they find themselves in. I just can't say enough good things about this book.
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on August 3, 2013
I waited six months to get this audio book from the library. It was worth the wait. Learning how to identify mean girl behavior, which is extremely different and can be much more subtle than the typical "bully" behavior we all have been trained to recognize, is a strong skill to have as a mother. The emphasis in this book is on active listening to your child. Learn your child's behavior when she is happy and assertive. Observe signs of changes in your child's behavior when mean girl behavior is happening at school -- hair twirling, secrets, dampening of her spirit, unwilling to discuss what's happening at school are some examples given. Getting your child to open up and come up with ideas to assert herself and navigate through difficult situations is tough, but this book gives great coaching advice. Of course, you must take action in certain situations, but learning how to support your daughter and bolster her is the best part of this book. Honestly, the book is focused on elementary school girls, but mean girl behavior is the same at all ages and this advice is just as good if you're dealing with a 6 year old mean girl or a 46 year old mean girl!
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on August 8, 2014
This may be an interesting read if you have nothing else to do. I was looking for real help for my daughter (6 years old) who was being bullied, didn't really find much in this book. The advise could have been put in a pamphlet. The authors didn't do ANY real research it is based on their LIMITED experiences parenting their own 5 or 6 kids. The sampling of persons and number of experiences is no where near big enough to write book, at least not a meaningful one.
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