• Other Friendship Advice

My daughter has been singled out as the “bad friend”

Published: May 5, 2015 | By | 2 Replies Continue Reading
It can be heartbreaking when your child is singled out as the bad friend.



My heart is breaking for my daughter. Annie is 13 years old and in 8th grade in a middle school. Recently her life was been turned upside down.

It started with a conflict with two girls she was friends with (H and K) when one was using and selling pot (H) and the other decided to date a guy she knew Annie was crushing on (K). When that went South, Annie changed her peer group and I was so happy to see her happy.

Unknown to me she was venting to them and said some inappropriate things in anger, e.g. “I hate her, I just wanna stick an ax in her forehead.” These were not meant as real threats just venting anger.

Things hit the fan when the two original friends (H&K) confronted her in the bathroom and threatened her and wouldn’t let her out. Annie practically barfed information all over the principal bearing her soul.

The next thing you know “friends” are switching sides and telling people Annie is going to kill students at school. Just when I thought everything was settled, a piece of paper is found in a book. It was something Annie and her new friends wrote one night. Creating a “reverse cult gang” and writing all the things they would film and put on YouTube. They all had the same story and all said it was a joke…

But when they found out the parents were being called they all blamed Annie. It was her that wrote it even though they all participated. Now they are all completely avoiding her and their parents all feel Annie is a very bad kid and they no longer can be around her. They laugh and carry on in a group in classes and lunchroom while she is a leper.

What can I do? Please help! To make things even more complicated, I work at her school and see this myself.

Thanks, Eve


Hi Eve,

I’m so sorry for the stress and angst your daughter is experiencing and that you are witnessing firsthand.

The first thing I’d do, if I were you, would be to get your daughter into professional counseling outside of the school. She needs to be able to speak to someone who is unbiased, in a confidential setting, to help her work through her part in the conflict.

You sound like you’ve done a great job helping Annie so far. Additional input from a therapist will provide her with two adults to offer support and advice in a complicated situation. You may also want to check in with the principal of your school to make sure things don’t escalate any further.

Annie may need help in learning how to express her anger in ways that don’t alarm others. While young teens often talk about hating someone, writing about “sticking an ax in her head” is more worrisome. In today’s zero-tolerance environment, school personnel and other parents might hear those words as threats of violence.

I can only imagine how hurt and upset both you and Annie must feel. Each hour this continues probably feels like weeks but with school ending soon, I assume Annie will be in a new high school, having learned new skills, which will offer her somewhat of a fresh start.

In the meantime, encourage Annie to act friendly at school and show her kindness in her actions rather than telling people how she is or isn’t. Keep checking in with her about her feelings, and look out for signs of depression and anxiety.

Good luck to you and Annie,

Signed, *Amy Feld

*Amy Feld, PhD, MSW has trained and worked as a child psychologist.

Disclaimer: Nothing in this or any other post is intended to substitute for medical, psychiatric or clinical diagnosis/treatment. Rather, all posts are written as the type of advice that one friend might give to another.

Tags: , , , , , ,

Category: Child and adolescent friendships

Comments (2)

Trackback URL | Comments RSS Feed

  1. Maddie says:

    Your daughter’s violent statements are alarming. I would make sure she sees a good psychologist. Good luck.

  2. Lita says:

    Wow. Kids these days sure have different problems than we did growing up.

Leave a Reply