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Bullied by other mums at the school gates?

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Have you been bullied by other mums at the school gates? School can be a pretty tough place if every morning and afternoon you face dodging the spiteful comments, bitchy remarks, turned backs or seething glares, and that isn’t referring to the children! You may have thought the days of playground bullies were left behind when you finished school, but more and more mums are complaining of the new breed of school bullies – the clique of women who stand at the school gates and make life hell for others. No it’s not an urban myth derived from ‘The Real Housewives of Beverly hills’ it’s a real problem affecting real women every day.

In the beginning…Bullied by other mums at the school gates?

When your child starts at primary school, you too, will inadvertently form a new ‘class’ of parents and while the majority will happily drop off and pick up their kids with no issues or form firm friendships with other mums, for some, this time can be very stressful. Just like children form friendship groups, so do parents, with some seizing it as an opportunity to belittle, embarrass or threaten other mums. It may be that you don’t dress the same, don’t come from the same background, don’t have as much money or simply your face just doesn’t fit, and like with bullies at school, these things may be said out of their own insecurities, encouragement from others or simply to try and become ‘queen bee’ in that social circle.

All forms of bullying

This behaviour ranges from being excluded from children’s parties or social events to a constant onslaught of insults or back-handed compliments like ‘I wish I could be more like you and not care about my appearance’ or ‘I couldn’t be poor like you, I don’t know how you manage, you deserve a medal’. Whether you are a slummy mummy or a yummy mummy, people with all styles from all backgrounds have fallen victim to this breed of school gate bully. In any other daily situation you could easily avoid people you don’t like or that are rude to you, but picking your children up from school isn’t one of those.

Rise above it

If you face this kind of childish behaviour then firstly try and rise above it. The last thing you want for your child is a scene outside their classroom and like with most bullies, if they can see they aren’t getting a rise from you, they usually move on to someone else. Don’t stoop to their level and start reciprocating their behaviour with other mums, forming warring cliques. It’s not healthy for you and will certainly at some point end up rubbing off on your child and their relationships with children in their class.

Kill with kindness

Be as nice as possible, it’s often so much harder to be nasty to someone that is being kind back to you, so smiling as you pass or giving a friendly hello (even if they blank you) may just stop them in their tracks.

Just be who you are!Bullied by other mums at the school gates?

Many parents may advise on ways to avoid being the victim of mean comments such as; don’t wear heals unless you’re going to work, don’t dress too smartly as you will look like you’re trying to appear superior, don’t be too glamorous as you’ll look as though you care more about your appearance than your child’s and don’t look too scruffy as you’ll get looked down on. But in reality, mums should be dressing or acting however they would naturally and shouldn’t need to conform to a type just to fit in with others, after all, that’s what we try and teach our children if they’re in the same position.

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21 Responses to “Bullied by other mums at the school gates?”

  1. Karen

    I am REALLY struggling with this. I, along with my daughter have pretty much over the past 2.5 years been completely ostracised by the school Mums to the point where its affecting me and making me believe that as its me against a whole group it must be me that has the problem not them! Despite my husband and friends reassurances that I’m not a terrible person. I feel physically sick having to go in to school for anything. We have a school event coming up soon and all Mums are expected to attend – I am already thinking of ways/excuses not to be there. Its not fair on my daughter as she is too astute and knows there is something up. I feel like such a failure all round and wish I could / knew how to just put a brave face on it and rise above it…. I have until now and now its all just become a bit much……any advice???

    Reply
    • Fran

      hi Karen…..I do know how you feel as I am in the same position. In my case it is 1 mum in particular that is stirring up trouble for me at the school….she is going out of her way to persuade teachers that I am a bad person and is sending me text messages saying I should feel ashamed every day at school etc….I haven’t done anything wrong and my husband just says it’s a jealousy thing….but that doesn’t help that sick feeling every morning and afternoon when going to school! I am generally a calm person but I am definitely having enough of it….I just don’t know what to do! We should rise above it….but how do we do that if no-one talks to us? Are there any of the other mums at the school that you can talk to?

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      • Kyra

        Fran if I was you I would get in touch with your principal or the police because sending text msg’s like that is harassment. Gosh I feel for you both though! My son has just started prep, as has my neighbours daughter, they are in the same class and I have just started to notice she is treating me differently at school and some of the other mums are becoming stand offish. I am seething! We have been friends for 5 yrs! I was bullied in high school and the thought of having to spend the next 12 years dealing with this crap again is giving me nightmares! I keep asking myself what can I do? So first things first we are moving when our lease is up! but after that I just dont know!

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    • Michelle Smith

      Hi there,

      I am relieved to find others in the same situation as me- i hate doing the school run and always feel like im being bullied like a school kid- it is ridiculous as i am a grown woman. My son in turn gets excludes from birthday parties, etc. I try to ignore it but get upset when my son says no one wants to play with him in the playground. i just tell my son these people are jealous of us. it is sad, tho

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    • Jenny

      Please don’t blame yourself. I have been struggling with the school gate since Christmas. A neighbour and mother of a girl in my sons reception class was becoming very close but I saw and heard some nasty things so I started to distance myself. That’s when the fun started. She drummed up a coven of witches that I would have to walk around in and out of the school gate. Lies have been spread and any friendships I had were quickly ruined by them going to that person saying I had said nasty things which I didn’t: all I have done is go to and from school to pick my son up. They stand around talking in the yard like this in their life. And it is. They thrive on it. Give them no oxygen. Smile and hold your child’s hand lovingly each day. Invest in their smile when they see you each day and know that they have the problems not you. Hold that head up high. They will soon eat each other up and fight amongst themselves and when they do feel warm and cosy inside that you never had anything to do with them. Good luck and focus on the little people. Jx

      Reply
  2. Iwillsurvive

    I really am at end of the road. I feel really low because the school mum clique have taken away any self confidence I had. I feel isolated, humiliated, alone and desperate. Where can I go for help?

    Reply
  3. Claire

    Hi Natalie I feel your pain. I have been bullied since reception because of jealousy( my son has just started year 2). This ringleader has already driven 2 people out of school and also bullies my son. Another one in the group also says terrible things to my 10 year old daughter who was bullied physically by her daughter. I cannot believe that these people exist and get away with it. They are masters at their game and other people get sucked into it. I tackle the situation with kindness and smiling(although this does get me down sometimes as I just want to scream at them and their fakery and injustice). That is how it hurts them seeing that I am always positive. Good luck and try to close on in xx

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    • Jazzy

      YOU ARE NOT ALONE! Same evil bully’s making my life hell and I’m a single mum of 3 who works my fingers to the bone, have escaped domestic violence after years of abuse and a dam good mother. My eldest son has undiagnosed aspergers with co existing ADD and me, I have developed post traumatic stress syndrome from having no support. All my 3 children are extremely beautiful with regular shreds of brilliance! The bullying really started when I finally lost my baby weight and my eldest sons behaviour improved tremendously! It’s like suddenly the playground Mafia saw me as a threat and want to drive me out of school. The main “QUEENBEEBULLY” IS ACTUALLY ON THE GOVERNING BOARD OF A SMALL CHURCH SCHOOL IN LEEDS. The clan of board housewives ALWAYS meet early as I see them rushing to meet. As soon as I approach they all look me up and down, as if making a mental note of every item of clothing and tallying it all up to a grand total of “I hate that bitch!” As I pass head held up high I can see them whispering sour nothings of BULL like a pack of snarling wolves. I feel like little red riding hood lost in the dark woods. I speak to the new head teacher about it who turns out to secretly HATE single mums, tarnishing us all with the same poopascooping bababrush…..as he is in fact the Queenbeebullys allie. He now enjoys picking on single mums at our school, believing he is somehow God making us sorry for our sins of failing our husbands. He hates everything I represent, a strong independent female who looks and talks a little like PINK….I desperately want t move schools and have the form right here as the teachers are also snooty ON\OFF because I have bad days and accidentally spill my true feelings now and then. My kids are excluded from the recent photo of the OPERATION SHOEBOX school news letter as another child proudly holds ours!!! This morning I found out from other victims of this discrimination that the evil man is not allowing us to change school by making lies up and exaggerating his concerns of our mental well being. The majority believe him whilst I am seemingly being held hostage, bullied and mentally toyed with like a game they like to play!
      ITS EASY TO STAND IN A CROWD BUT IT TAKES COURAGE TO STAND ALONE! …BLESSINGS TO ALL WHOM ARE SUFFERING BULLYING…there should be more laws to protect women against this type of bullying XXX

      Reply
  4. Rowena Lou

    Why om earth would I want to change who I am just because of some sad pathetic bitches!

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    • Tink

      I can’t believe only now I’m seein this sight I’ve felt like the only one or that I was going mad we should all be in joying all parts of bringing are angels up and these ppl are going to take the chance of us inbrasing this Time of are child’s life away from us because we only get one chance at it ..

      Reply
  5. fleur

    I live in a big village where I send my kids to private school, thinking this would be good. How wrong! Mothers are so bitchy. I’m an ex model and one mother has made it her mission to turn everyone against me. I never encountered this much nastiness when I was modelling. I just try and carry on as normal but it eats me up inside that I can’t tell them all she’s a fake!

    Reply
    • Rebecca

      I have moved my kids to a private school and the mums I belive are worse there.The class rep didn’t speak to me at a coffee morning with another mum and there was only 8 of us there and then when it was only the two of us she felt she should but as soon as another parent turned up she turned her back on me……I nearly laughed out loud. She has now made me feel uncomfortable Put it this way,money doesn’t buy you class or manners although I do believe some feel they have the right to walk around with their noses in the air. Why women can’t support other women is beyond me. My kids have some years left so I will pick up drop off and avoid at all cost !

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    • Elizabeth

      I am glad I am not alone. I moved overseas 4 years ago due to my husbands job. My children attend an international school. From day 1 I have been excluded. I physically feel sick having to attend events at the school, my children are regular excluded from parties. I always invite every child from their respective classes. I think 2 women are the queen bees and the others just seem to follow their lead. Sadly its a small expat community here so you always run into the same people st social events. I am sick to death of being teased about how I dress how my girls are (inteligent,beautiful and always getting high grades btw)On one occasion 2 women were trying to hide behind a plant at an event and talk about me …… honestly do they think I am stupid. I have been so desperate on occasions. I have no one to talk to I didn’t want to talk to my parents in the UK as they will worry themselves sick. We have know decided to split the family up and my daughter’s and I will return to the UK. I just don’t fit in here many of the women start drinking at lunchtime due to boredom of being an expat. The last 4 years have been hell on earth. I feel better for finding I sm not the only one.

      Reply
    • Charlotte

      Jealousy is a terrible thing! You’re obviously a beautiful woman and other women feel threatened by femininity and beauty. It’s always because you have something they want. Unfortunately women don’t tend to say “Hey she’s a beautiful woman”, they respond in a negative way! I don’t understand why, as some of my friends are amazing, beautiful women and I compliment them about it. I just don’t get why women don’t build each other up instead of knocking each other down

      Reply
  6. Charlotte

    Hey everyone,
    I just googled this because I wondered if anyone else had gone through it and it seems that there are way more mums suffering with this than I thought. It isn’t a group of mums it is just one lady who does it to me. It started in the first ‘term’ of the year she would stare at me and I thought it was weird but I was happily standing with my partner and daughter waiting for my son so I just assumed it was nothing. She kept staring then she started glaring at me, arms crossed glaring at me as I walked down the ramp from my sons classroom. It has now gotten to the point where she turns to her ‘friends’, makes a comment and they look at me. But to be honest they don’t really care. The other day I walked past and she was staring at me AGAIN, I just looked at her and continued about my business. After 2 1/2 terms of this I’ve just about had enough and figured it wasn’t just me being paranoid, it was actually a thing! I tried going the other way around to the classroom so I didn’t come face to face with her, I tried being late which is not cool as it means my son is late. It didn’t help. The last straw was the other day when her partner was there and she said something to him as I walked past. Again, he didn’t seem to look or care. So what is it I thought, that makes her hate me so much!! I finally confided in my family and even my ex (sons dad) who drops him off to school sometimes. He said that this lady smiles at him, but when he walked past her the other day he said that he did not smile and she looked at her feet. He wanted to make her feel like I did which is not taking the high road BUT obviously made her feel bad like she does to me. My partner tells me she’s jealous and that I should smile and say hi! I’m a relatively young mum, but I’m not the youngest, I’m not unattractive, and I’ve always been taught to dress well… so maybe she is jealous but I have a lot of anxiety and I didn’t believe that she could be jealous at first but I give anyone the time of day and I’m happy in my family, I get on with my ex partner and I smile a lot at everyone. It just feels like this one person is ruining my morning trip to school, when no one else gives a second glance, she seems to fixate on me.
    I am going to go in tomorrow and smile, if I see her and see if that makes a difference. Can’t keep going on this way 🙁

    Reply
  7. dee

    Omg I am in the same boat Im not from this country married to British man in Australia people don’t pull u den like I see here. Now my child has started school its got so bad but I don’t care about me .my kid is not allowed to play at othas HSE nor anyone allowed to come to mine and she asks me all the time. I don’t have any friends or family I’m an easy target but How do I stop my daughter being effected

    Reply
  8. Anne

    So glad to know at least I’m not alone. Thought for the past 3 years it was only happening to me. Seems like it’s pretty much widespread. Someone should do a local group meet ups or email support or something like slimming world or weight watcher groups !!
    I stand alone waiting for my child. I work, married,have friends but I’ve never been given a chance with the school mums. I wasn’t bullied at school nor college and this is such a weird situation. I carnt wait until my daughter goes to seconday school. Their really bitchy for no reason. Like you are fullfilling a cartoon character for them.someone has to be the outcast and unfortunately somehow it’s ended up me and us on here. Take no notice of them. Thankfully I can squirrel away on my phone busy like I’m running a international business network or something when I’m only deleting spam email lol. Good luck to any mums on here if it’s affecting them badly. Please tell yourself what I tell myself, one day this will be over its just one of those things. You are not defined by these strangers. They could be jealous of you.

    Reply
  9. Marlyn

    This is happening to me too. I stopped speaking to this mother because she was talking behind my back about me and being nice to my face!

    Had no contact with her since June 2016. And now it’s October… at the start of the school term (September) three days into school she approaches me at my car (left her child with another mother) and proceeded to scream and shout at me in front of my two kids. At one point she was leaning over me as if she was going to hit me. Obviously this was outside of school, I’d just picked up my son from school… but the school has decided to condone her behaviour. She is going to a school trip that I am strongly against her going. She’s obviously shown her true colours in front of myself/my children and plenty of other witnesses. How can she go? It doesn’t make sense. It’s like saying someone that’s done prison time can go… I find it very appalling that the school has condoned her behaviour and that of her ‘gang’. The vice head teacher also knows this persons mother so I believe there to be a conflict of interest.

    I’m so confused, upset and ostracised from this school. Their undertone was that if I want to stay I should shut up and get on as it’s all about their image/how they look to others/on Ofsted. Instead of helping to tackle bullying they are themselves being bullied by saying to me that I should ‘take my child out of school or home school him’. That I find rude as it is their responsibility to give my child an education and we were given a place there so shouldn’t they deal with any problems professionally.

    Considering they are a CoE school. They are not very Christianly…

    St George’s is badly run and I’m shocked by their conduct.

    Reply
  10. jim

    man….as male picking up my kids and listening/seeing the bullying from so called “grown-up” men and women is shocking…I think it’s a sad sate of the level of education in the UK. Most of the kids are more grown up.

    Reply
  11. Louise

    Omg can’t believe i have found this site. This happened to me nearly three years ago. My son started started reception then more or less straight away noticed how cliquey the other mums were. Some of them would speak and others would look at you like something they had scrapped off there shoe. I did get friendly with a couple of them but not anything but a short chat at school. All the others would stand in groups chatting. Shortly after I met one of the other mums who also felt like an outcast. We became quite good friends and started seeing each other outside the school run.
    As time went by me her and the other mums that was friends became friends together. I did notice that my main friend liked to have a good bitch about the other’s and enjoyed the school gossip.
    More social events were arranged, all of a sudden my friend started to invite some of the other school mums she didn’t particularly get on with out on nights out previously she had slagged off. This is when I started to notice her blowing hot and cold with me. After this she was going on social nights with this girl and leaving me out. I confronted her about this and then it all went terribly wrong. Everyone stopped speaking to me bar one girl but I could tell she was being influenced by her. They started knocking about together and I had been cast aside.
    After this which carried on for half the school year, me having to do the school run and everyone blanking me. This caused alot of stress I tried to keep my head up and didn’t say anything to anyone but found this really upsetting I couldn’t believe there behaviour I felt like i was back at school.
    Eventually we decided to move. My son was starting to get ignored and not invited to parties which just added to the whole thing. Now we have moved things couldn’t be better. I don’t get involved with the school mums just a simple hello. My son has friends now and couldn’t be happier.

    Reply

About Rebecca Robinson

About Rebecca Robinson

After spending the last 8 years juggling life as a mum of two, wife and working full time as a Project Manager for a global telecommunications company, Rebecca Robinson made the decision to follow her love of writing and took the plunge; turning her passion into a full time career. Since becoming a full time writer, Rebecca has worked with various media and copy-writing companies and with the ability to make any topic relevant and interesting to the reader, now contributes to The Working Parent on articles ranging from credit cards to teenage relationships. Ever the optimist, Rebecca's dreams for the future include a house in the country filled with children, dogs and horses in the field!

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