Her Daughter Turned out To Be a Bully Against Her Own Step-Sister so Her Mom Punished Her but Wondered if She Was Wrong

A mother recently asked for advice on what to do about her daughter. She found out that she had been bullying her step-sister and she’s wondering if she punished her too harshly.

She has a daughter and a step-daughter

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The 35-year-old woman has a daughter named Jessica, who is 15. Two years ago, she married Joe (aged 47), who also has a 15-year-old daughter (Bella). Joe’s wife had died a few years prior, leaving Bella without a mother figure.

She thought they were getting along

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“Joe and Jessica have always gotten along very well. I presumed Jessica and Bella would also bond as they are the same age, and Jessica has always wanted a sister. I thought they were getting along fine. At home, they were always nice to each other, shared stuff, and seemed to have fun.”

Something happened at school

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However, a recent incident at school revealed that their relationship was not as amicable as it appeared. While her husband was away on a business trip, the woman received a call from the school stating that Bella was crying in the office. 

Her daughter was a bully

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The reason for her distress was that Jessica had been bullying her for being “ugly” and “unfashionable.” This revelation shocked the woman, as she had always raised Jessica to be kind and empathetic. 

The woman was appalled

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The woman was alarmed and said, “Bella does have a bit of an alternative style, but I think it’s creative and unique, and definitely not an excuse to bully her. I was absolutely horrified at this, as I was also bullied for things like that when I was a child.”

She talked to Bella

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Determined to address the issue and provide support to Bella, the woman picked her up early from school and took her out for ice cream. She encouraged Bella to talk about the situation if she wanted to, and Bella eventually opened up. 

Bella just wanted peace

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She admitted that she had kept silent about the bullying because she wanted Jessica to like her, and “she didn’t want to cause any problems for her dad because, since her mom died, she hasn’t seen him so happy.”

The woman said she’d handle it

The Inability To Calm Themselves and Recollect Without Needing Outside Input and Support
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The woman reassured Bella that she would handle the situation without disclosing that Bella had confided in her. Instead, she would tell Jessica that the school had informed her of the bullying. 

She was on Bella’s side

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She also emphasized that she wanted to be there for Bella, regardless of the circumstances, and would do her best to support her, even though she could never replace Bella’s late mother.

She confronted her daughter

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When Jessica returned home, the woman confronted her about the bullying and asked her to explain her actions. Instead of showing remorse, Jessica doubled down on her insults.” She claimed that her friends had been teasing her for having to live with Bella, and she felt justified in her behavior.

She laid down a punishment

Lack of Empathy
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The disappointed mom said, “I told her that I would be taking away her phone for a week and that she has to apologize to Bella. She then proceeded to say more nasty things, which made me snap. I told her I would take away all her makeup and the new clothes that I bought for her last week.”

It seemed appropriate

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Jessica’s main interests are makeup and fashion, as she aspires to become a stylist when she grows up. The mom believed that taking these items away would be an appropriate punishment, given that Jessica was bullying Bella over a related issue. 

The woman is questioning her actions

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Since the punishment, Jessica has accused her mother of ruining her life, while Bella has expressed appreciation for her efforts. The woman has offered therapy or discussions to help Jessica, but her offers have been met with more accusations and screaming. 

 She asked for advice

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One user wrote, “NTA – after raising her to be kind and empathetic, and her bullying her step-sister, I think the punishment fits the nature of the bullying. Also sounds like her friends are little bullies too! You might want to think about steering her away from them.”

Another commented, “Kids don’t get everything right in spite of what we teach them. That’s why we have to discipline them when they willfully screw up.”

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Source: Reddit

 

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