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my daughter is struggling with this pcs

Posted by Anonymous
  • 17 Replies

She is about to turn 12. We just moved to Florida from England where we were for 6 years. My daughter simply is not adjusting at all, and we have been here at the new place for about 3 weeks now, of which she has been in school for 2 1/2 weeks.

1. She has no friends yet. She eats lunch aganist the wall. While she didn't pick up the british accent persay, she did pick up some of their slang, and sometimes catches herself using it. One day last week I went there because she forgot her lunch and one of the kids heard me talk to her and turned around and asked, "why don't you talk weird like she does?"  She wanted to play volleyball when we first got here, but basically the coach shot her down and while we were talking to the coach about it, I heard the girls behind us talking amongst themselves about how they dont' want the new girl to play.

2. Her grades are horrible. I know  I know we have only been here for less than 3 weeks, but she is failing everything. This is a girl who loved school. She cared about her work.  Because she isn't doing her work, or not caring about it, she has an F in math and C's in every other subject. She straight up lied to her teacher and me about not having homework. She told me she didn't have any, she told her teacher her brother took it and when the teacher allowed her to skip PE to redo it, she failed to do it. She basically left that day and threw the undone paper away.

3. she cries nightly about hating it here. how she wants to go back.

I have gotten onto her about her school work and how unacceptable it is to just not try. To lie. I have ridden her butt a lot since then.

DH is concerned she may be depressed. Her birthday is October 1st and she has no friends. at all. I asked her what she wanted to do for her birthday and she said nothing. I asked if she wanted to invite anyone to a sleep over and she said that she doesn't have anyone. She said people think she is weird and stupid.

It just breaks my heart. I don't know if this is normal for a preteen to deal with or if maybe my daughter is depressed. We do not live on the base and the school does not have a lot of military students. We have never lived on base, and at this point I almost wish we did, simply so she'd be around people like her and who understand. Kids in school who wouldn't think the british talk is weird but cool.

I don't know how to help her. Or really what to do.

My heart breaks for her. She was the one child I wasn't worried about. SHe was always so open and never met a stranger. NOw she is so cold and closed off and just wish she'd meet that one person..all it takes is one friend and i wish she'd just meet that person already.


Posted by Anonymous on Sep. 18, 2013 at 10:52 PM
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by on Sep. 18, 2013 at 11:16 PM

:/ not much help here just lots of hugs..

by on Sep. 19, 2013 at 2:27 AM

PCS'g is hard... Especially with preteens and teens.  We are 2 months into a new duty station and my daughter is struggling as well. We're in a DoDs school and it really is not much different, the kids still spread rumors, still treat her like the new kid, etc.

I agree about having her talk to a counselor.  

6 years in one duty location is a long time!  She probably had deep roots/connections in your last home and pulling up those roots and trying to replant them hurts and is hard. 

Talk to her as much as she will let you, reassure her that it will get better. (It takes me personally, on average a year into a new duty station to be back to my old self, to really enjoy the place we're at and not horribly miss the people and place we left.  And I've been at this for awhile!)

Maybe talk with her teachers about the difficulty she is having?  I wonder if they will be studying anywhere you have lived or traveled to?  If so, maybe your daughter could bring in items and photos from when she was able to visit those places and share what it was like to live overseas.  I know there is a cool factor in being able to shop in places like Paris, etc.  As shallow as it may seem, showing that she's done some "cool" things and been to some "cool" places may help her be accepted?  I'm not sure if kids in the 7th or 8th grade even care about things like that though... those were the worst years of my schooling as far as bullying.  Middle school girls can be so horrible to each other. 

Does she play any sports?  Do any extra clubs, etc?  That could be a place to make friends. 

Chin up mom, it will get better, just keep communicating with her, get her some help, and love on her as much as possible! 

by Silver Member on Sep. 19, 2013 at 5:52 AM

 It's a tough situation; I feel for both of you.  I agree with the others that it would be helpful to get her a counselor (not the guidance counselor) so that she can talk about her feelings openly with someone whom she is not afraid of disappointing or hurting (like you).  And for her birthday, what about taking the family somewhere for the weekend?  That would take the pressure off of her to have friends to celebrate with at a sleepover. 

Those are tough years and the culture shock of moving somewhere so different is hard.  You can't fix the situation for her, but you can give her the tools to help herself.  good luck!

by Darby on Sep. 19, 2013 at 6:38 AM
Hugs mama.
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by on Sep. 19, 2013 at 6:56 AM
Hugs mams! Hopefully things get better soon!
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by on Sep. 19, 2013 at 7:19 AM
1 mom liked this

oh. . . that sucks so bad to watch your babies hurt. 

I feel so badly for you all. 

DOes she have any interests?  Ie, my daughter loves art. can you enroll her in art classes? An out of school volley ball league?  DOes the base there have any youth groups?  once she makes some friends, I think she will feel better. 

I was so worried about this, too.  MY dd has onyl gone to one school.  She is VERY tall.  we're talking 10 and looks 16.  I was so afraid if we moved people would make fun of her or isolate her because they think she's older and failed.  She's actually one of the brightest students here and is well liked.  But I could see this happening. .. Make sure you tell your DD that there is NOTHING wrong with her. . .moving to a different country and going to a school where you don't know ANYONE is tough stuff, but she'll make it becasue she's tougher. 

make sure she goes to command/boat functions, too.  YOu try making friends with the parents and volunteering at school.   I know that most parents here are friendly and my DD is friends with their kids becase I'm friends with the parents.  If you volunteer at school and have a chance to talk to these ladies, mention your DD is having a bit of a rough time. . . if they are anything like me or the parents I know, they'll encourage a relationship. 

Girl scouts?  That organization definitely promotes "being a friend to every girl". 

Hang in there.  I hope things get better, and I know they will. Be sure to explain that to your little one!

by on Sep. 19, 2013 at 9:29 AM
You've gotten good suggestions. Try to do something different for her birthday. Maybe go somewhere for a grown up spa day, or if she has any specific interests, something involving those. The counselor may help. It will take time.
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by Stacey on Sep. 19, 2013 at 9:51 AM

 This is so sad.  I hope things for her get better. Such a tough age to have to switch schools and leave behind everything she knows. Good luck to you all.

by Silver Member on Sep. 19, 2013 at 10:07 AM

I'm so sad for your daughter. :-(

My 10 year old has been adjusting from the west coast to the midwest for the past couple of weeks. Some parts of the transition have been rough, particularly the school work because the math they do here isn't the math she's used to. There have been tears every night over homework assignments. She plays soccer, which I got her into immediately, but she's moved up a division now and it's more competitive. She's the youngest on her team, and these girls are way more skilled than her, so now she hates soccer. :-(  My saving grace is that the other kids have been pretty good to her, and she's picked up some friends pretty quickly. I have to take her phone away from her for an hour to do her homework because three girls from school are constantly blowing her up via text and face time. 

I wish her, and you, nothing but luck. There is nothing more frustrating than watching your child be miserable and not being able to do anything about it.

by on Sep. 19, 2013 at 10:54 AM
Oh, that sucks! Poor baby, I would try and get her involved in some after school activities so she can make friends outside of school.
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