This week at Girls on the Run, we’re talking about why it’s bad to gossip. As parents, with the advent of cyber gossiping and some of the cases that have hit the media in the past few years, I think everyone is being more careful about this topic, and for good reason.
The point of this week’s lessons is to help your daughter: 1) learn what gossiping is and why it’s bad, and 2) learn how to stop gossiping. While I think this lesson is an important one, it’s also one where we need you to help us reinforce it.
Here are 4 ways we can work together to end gossiping and help your daughter deal with it:
1) Help her cultivate her compassion. – At Girls on the Run, we think it is important that our girls understand that emotional blows can hurt as much as physical ones.
2) Give her a simple test she can use to judge if his or her teasing is playful or hurtful: “How would I feel if someone said this about me?”
3) Talk to her about the when and where of playful teasing.
4) Examine your own behavior and that of other family members. Do you rib your children at length, even after they plead with you to stop? Do you tease inappropriately, that is, about the way people look or the habits they have? Make sure that your own teasing (and that of everyone else in your household) is good-natured, not aggressive or manipulative.
Here are some helpful websites with exercises you can use with your daughter to teach them the importance of not gossiping: