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How to handle jealousy among parents?

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dbean

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My daughter is moving to level 6 after a rough year in Xcel Gold. No one imaged this would happen, especially after her emotional breakdowns last year, but something happened when she turned 11. Things started to click, she stopped the "I don't know why I am crying" episodes, and she started to excel.

In the last two months she has gotten consistent on her BWO and cartwheel on beam, and is now working on her RO and BHS. She got her freehip and castaway flyaway and cleaned up her pike on and straight arm kip on bars. Got her front and back layout on floor and improved on her FHS FT on floor. Because of her hard work and progression, her coaches felt level 6 would be best for her, that is after some long conversations about our concerns, their concerns, and our DD's needs and wants.

But now, for the first time in 4 years, we are dealing with parent jealousy and not just from anyone but my best friend. Her daughter is a beautiful and amazing gymnast and consistently scored mid to high 37 last year, but has not gotten the skills required by our gym to move to level 6 so is repeating Gold.

I personally can brush off the jealousy of the parent, but what I am having issues with is her telling my daughter (before she knew) that my DD would never move to 6, talking about my DD behind her back to our mutual friends and to her own daughter, who was also my DD'a best friend, but is now being mean.

The mom doesn't know I know and the parents, as a whole, do a lot together outside the gym and when we travel. Things are so awkward but I still want to be friends or at least have us comfortable around each other and I want the kids to cheer each other on, be friends, and be happy. How do parents who have experienced this, handle it?
 

Iwannabemargo

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take the moral high ground, the view is much better from up there.

Be nice, polite and smiling whenever you see her and just think how much that will make her seethe.

She can't argue with your daughters improvements and scores so let the gymnastics do the talking.
 

notthatmom

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Kick her in the face.


Kidding. But yeah, what margo said...if you show her it doesn't bother you, then she'll eventually stop. If other oarents know about it, then the coaches will find out soon enough and they can handle it. Just play dumb, ignore her, smile and nod.
 

dbean

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-- haha, would never (or would I). The coaches are actually aware and did pull the mom aside and approached it in a very professional way, leaving my DD out of the equation. They providing her the skill list to show her what her daughter needed to move up.

Kick her in the face.


Kidding. But yeah, what margo said...if you show her it doesn't bother you, then she'll eventually stop. If other oarents know about it, then the coaches will find out soon enough and they can handle it. Just play dumb, ignore her, smile and nod.
 
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Gymmommy71

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Problems like this are easily solved by not making the gym a major source of your social interaction - basically just dropping off, leaving, and coming back later for pickup. Having a "best friend" that is your daughter's direct competitor in an intense, expensive and time consuming activity can have a tendancy to end poorly when things don't play out as expected (like the situation you're describing) - or will at least lead to many years of underhanded/behind the back drama and stress.

I've learned that the best activity parent friends to make are ones that are very removed competitively from my kid - like ones who's daughters are many years younger or older, and are just very dissimilar to my kid in many ways.
 

dbean

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Problems like this are easily solved by not making the gym a major source of your social interaction - basically just dropping off, leaving, and coming back later for pickup. Having a "best friend" that is your daughter's direct competitor in an intense, expensive and time consuming activity can have a tendancy to end poorly when things don't play out as expected (like the situation you're describing) - or will at least lead to many years of underhanded/behind the back drama and stress.

I've learned that the best activity parent friends to make are ones that are very removed competitively from my kid - like ones who's daughters are many years younger or older, and are just very dissimilar to my kid in many ways.
I don't think many parents stay at the gym once girls move to silver because of the hour commitment. My DD is doing 16 hours while gold does 14. Most of these girls have been together for 4+ years, and it has been pretty drama free with the girls welcoming newer girls with open arms. I am sure age plays a factor though. Seems drama is pretty limited amongst the younger girls. My daughter is pretty oblivious and if it wasn't for her friends sticking up for her, she wouldn't even know someone is being mean to her. She is a love bug.
 
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GymDad9.9

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I'm seeing this playing out in our gym at the moment. A couple of girls scoring out of their levels and moving on and another child's mother upset about it because she thinks her daughter should move on as well but the child scored poorly. It's a bad look.
 
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ldw4mlo

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But now, for the first time in 4 years, we are dealing with parent jealousy and not just from anyone but my best friend. Her daughter is a beautiful and amazing gymnast and consistently scored mid to high 37 last year, but has not gotten the skills required by our gym to move to level 6 so is repeating Gold.

I personally can brush off the jealousy of the parent, but what I am having issues with is her telling my daughter (before she knew) that my DD would never move to 6, talking about my DD behind her back to our mutual friends and to her own daughter, who was also my DD'a best friend, but is now being mean.
This is someone you consider your best friend. She is not. She is not even a friend.
 

profmom

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I must disagree with Gymmommy here. It's not the sport. It's the person. Some of my best friends are parents with kids who've been competing alongside my two for years. We keep each other sane and pull for each others' kids. I don't anticipate this changing even when they reach the point where they're directly competing against each other to earn a trip to nationals. We all feel like if it can't be my kid on the podium, I sure hope it's his/her teammate!

It will probably settle down once the season has started and she's adjusted to her disappointment. I hope you have better friends.
 

Mrs. Puma

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I'm so sorry this is happening. How awful. I agree with the previous posters. Keep you head high, take the high road and hopefully it shall pass. She's clearly not a good friend at all, so maybe it's good in a way this is coming to light now. You certainly can't trust her even if things smooth over, but being polite and staying away from the drama is the way to go. It's very sad adults would act like this. Good luck and congrats to you DD for such awesome improvments!
 

Gymmommy71

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I've found these relationships always seem to stay fine as long as everything plays out as expected - like both kids progres as expected and scores/results remain consistent over time, but have one of the friend mom girls' start to excel or decline significantly more than the other and then the apple cart is upset and you never know what will happen.

Also, OP - those moms who are telling you the stuff that this other mom is saying about you/your kid are two-faced as well - they are clearly still pretending to be her friend and making her feel she can confide in them even though they are repeating what she's saying to you. Don't trust them any further than you can throw them, and don't say anything to them that you wouldn't want the other mom to hear about. It's human nature to think that when people are telling you bad things others say about you it means they like you a lot more than the one they are tattling on, but honestly, that isn't always the case. I've learned over the years that any person who pretends to be the friend of someone that they trash when they are not around (even if that person is awful), is not someone you can trust.
 

dbean

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I'm seeing this playing out in our gym at the moment. A couple of girls scoring out of their levels and moving on and another child's mother upset about it because she thinks her daughter should move on as well but the child scored poorly. It's a bad look.
I am sorry you too are experiencing this. It totally sucks
 

OzZee

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I'm currently working on the avoidance plan.
It's interesting working out how late you can pick up without your child looking abandoned. Lol sorry not much help.

But yes interesting finding out who real friends are.
 

Tigtimes

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I've found these relationships always seem to stay fine as long as everything plays out as expected - like both kids progres as expected and scores/results remain consistent over time, but have one of the friend mom girls' start to excel or decline significantly more than the other and then the apple cart is upset and you never know what will happen.
Yes a sad but often true statement.
All you can do is what others suggested take the high road, smile and nod. Move up time usually the best time to sit in your car at pick up. ;)
 

Gymmom826

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Maybe his should be another thread, but I worry so much about this. How can you be friends and then worry so much the other person may betray you if you confide in them? And then if you don't put yourself out there, does it "look bad" too? Should you sit together at meets? Does it "look bad" if you don't? If you avoid speaking to someone does that "look bad"? I guess I'm asking does the parents behavior bear anything on the gymnast at all?
 

B.Gold

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Some lessons I've learned as gym mom:

How can you be friends and then worry so much the other person may betray you if you confide in them?
You can't, you need to learn to confide only in your husband. I've been completely stunned by what some people are willing to do to others to promote their child.

And then if you don't put yourself out there, does it "look bad" too?
Who cares. Keep in mind, people aren't looking at you as much as you think.

Should you sit together at meets? Does it "look bad" if you don't?
Look bad to whom? Certainly coaches don't care who you sit with.

If you avoid speaking to someone does that "look bad"?

Smile and wave

I guess I'm asking does the parents behavior bear anything on the gymnast at all?
Possibly,, but you would hope not. Be kind, but don't change who you are because of this sport.
Do what you need to do to keep from giving into the insanity. It may look differently for everyone but for me it's: confide only in my spouse, drop and run, care little about what others think, smile and wave, don't compare gymnasts and sit arms length at meets. ..... oh and read CB.....
 

lovemygymnast

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Well, having been in a similar situation, I say be polite & don't say anything negative in response. I would also respectfully tell the other parents that you understand they mean well but sometimes it's best not knowing what has been said. Those moms are stirring the pot, so be very careful. But as a rule, drop off & pick up with minimal time in the gym. You can be friendly and cordial without being BFF's. Now, if the other gymnast is being mean to your dd, that's a whole other ball game. That's something I'd take up with the coach. I can and will handle mean moms but nobody better be mean to my baby!
 

flipster

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Theoretically I like the idea of being nice, but it can only get you so far. Support system is what you need (your spouse, relatives, friends, coaches, other parents who are friends, etc). OR stay away and ignore, ignore, ignore, and be polite (but not overly), and don't respond to anything the other lady may do to test you.
 

ldw4mlo

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May be its my age. But I have long ago given up on what people think of me. I spend as little time as possible at the gym. I am nice to everyone read that as cordial. Very neutral. Because seriously if you say a child is good, it some how get twisted into saying the other kids are not...................... I have no patience for that dance. I socialize with other parents and say as.little.as.possible. about gym.

For now these folks are not my friends. Maybe someday, after gym some might be, but for now, they are all folks I spend time with because our kids have similar interests.
 
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