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Thread: Maybe It's Me?

  1. #21
    lizzywednesday is offline Red Diamond level (10,000+ posts)
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    SHE STRUCK AGAIN!

    We didn't make up supply packs for our troop members when we packaged our supplies a week ago because we'd mis-counted packs from one troop (we weren't supposed to pack the supplies in their bags) so we ended up being short. OK, no problem.

    We packed our troops' supplies last Saturday and then sent out emails to have troop families pick up their Scouts' supplies from our respective front porches. Each of us has one of her daughters in our troops; I sent out my troop's "pick up your stuff" email on Sunday morning, with time slots in Signup Genius for Monday & Tuesday pickups (1-hour windows separated by 1 hour for hygiene theater wipe-downs of the drop-box lid)

    My co-leader sent an email letting her troop families know the supplies would be on her porch; pick up before login time (12:30pm) today.

    9:30am my doorbell rings. It's this woman. I am still in my jammies and haven't had coffee yet.

    She's looking for her elder daughter's supplies; I said she needed to check in with my co-leader, who leads the Cadettes, because I only took the supplies for the Juniors. (Which, by the way, she spaced out on picking up earlier in the week.)

    "Oh, OK, but she is still attending?"
    Yes, our troops are hosting this event. Everyone is expected to log in; your girls aren't getting the award & rocker because you didn't follow instructions, but they're expected to attend.
    "Oh. Thanks."

    And she leaves. I start to fume, but before I get too riled, I text my co-leader "heads up, Problem Parent was just here looking for Older Daughter's supplies for WTD in ... 3 hours"

    Co-leader says she thinks Problem Parent wears hearing aids; I haven't noticed, actually, so maybe I am remarkably unobservant. (Or maybe we mistook hearing aids for wireless earbuds or Bluetooth devices?)

    We hashed out a plan to deal, but we're both really frustrated.
    ==========================================
    Liz
    DD (3/2010)

    "Make mistakes! Get messy!" - Miss Frizzle

  2. #22
    ♥ms.pacman♥ is offline Red Diamond level (10,000+ posts)
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    Wow. it's not you. given you say it's the same person for past years, it sounds like she is just self-centered and can't be bothered to read through emails. i know lots of people like this at work (i'm a program manager). they don't want to be bothered to read through and follow instructions so they just do what they want and expect everyone else to accomodate their needs. Furthermore, they have the gall to GET UPSET at the organizer, bc they don't know what they are supposed to be doing, and the solution provided (that EVERYONE ELSE HAS BEEN ABLE TO FOLLOW) isn't convenient for them. The kicker is: they don't even realize they are being a royal pain in the rear, very rude, and are causing everyone a world of pain. They think they're some victim of not being provided enough information, and can't see why everyone else has been able to figure it out except for them. it's frustrating. It's like the Dunning-Krueger effect.

    i can't imagine going to someone's house in the morning unannounced, and basically demanding something, bc they couldn't be bothered to follow instructions.

    sorry you have to deal with this. at least take some comfort in knowing IT IS NOT YOU. some people are just bad about reading emails and following directions, and have no issue making everyone's life miserable bc they can't be bothered to figure stuff out.
    Last edited by ♥ms.pacman♥; 03-07-2021 at 11:28 AM.

  3. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by lizzywednesday View Post
    SHE STRUCK AGAIN!

    We didn't make up supply packs for our troop members when we packaged our supplies a week ago because we'd mis-counted packs from one troop (we weren't supposed to pack the supplies in their bags) so we ended up being short. OK, no problem.

    We packed our troops' supplies last Saturday and then sent out emails to have troop families pick up their Scouts' supplies from our respective front porches. Each of us has one of her daughters in our troops; I sent out my troop's "pick up your stuff" email on Sunday morning, with time slots in Signup Genius for Monday & Tuesday pickups (1-hour windows separated by 1 hour for hygiene theater wipe-downs of the drop-box lid)

    My co-leader sent an email letting her troop families know the supplies would be on her porch; pick up before login time (12:30pm) today.

    9:30am my doorbell rings. It's this woman. I am still in my jammies and haven't had coffee yet.

    She's looking for her elder daughter's supplies; I said she needed to check in with my co-leader, who leads the Cadettes, because I only took the supplies for the Juniors. (Which, by the way, she spaced out on picking up earlier in the week.)

    "Oh, OK, but she is still attending?"
    Yes, our troops are hosting this event. Everyone is expected to log in; your girls aren't getting the award & rocker because you didn't follow instructions, but they're expected to attend.
    "Oh. Thanks."

    And she leaves. I start to fume, but before I get too riled, I text my co-leader "heads up, Problem Parent was just here looking for Older Daughter's supplies for WTD in ... 3 hours"

    Co-leader says she thinks Problem Parent wears hearing aids; I haven't noticed, actually, so maybe I am remarkably unobservant. (Or maybe we mistook hearing aids for wireless earbuds or Bluetooth devices?)

    We hashed out a plan to deal, but we're both really frustrated.
    Ugh. On Sunday morning too! If you think or co leader thinks she wears hearing aids? Itís on her to make it known to you guys and to please repeat instructions slower. But since itís all send by emails, which tells me she just isnít reading them throughly and following it.

    As someone who wear hearing aid, I tend to make it known to newer people I interact fairly often. So that they wonít mistake my ďrudenessĒ for not following instructions, or looking spaced out. I tend to reply asking for more clarification if Iím still not sure after reading entire email.

    Itís not you or your co leader. We all have one of those type of people in every group. Try to enjoy rest of your sunday.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
    Mummy to DS1-6/11 and DS2-1/14

  4. #24
    lizzywednesday is offline Red Diamond level (10,000+ posts)
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    Thanks so much for the reassurance.

    For clarity, this happened on Saturday morning - I usually don't use vague "today"/"yesterday" language, but I needed to get this out fast! - but even so, showing up at someone's house on a weekend day without texting ahead or checking your email before you show up at the wrong place is really inconsiderate.

    Dualvans, thank you for pointing out that it's neither my Co-Leader's nor my job to figure out if Problem Parent wears hearing aids; if she does, it's her responsibility to let US know what she needs. I'm 100% willing to accommodate someone's needs, and I have been doing a lot of listening/reading about how to bring myself up to date, but if I don't know about a need, there's nothing I can do.

    While I am sympathetic (to a point) that her 3 kids' extracurricular activities have all moved online due to covid restrictions in our state, her feeling overwhelmed by all the emails she receives from school & activities isn't on me. (Frankly, the rude response to that would be "well, maybe don't register your kids for so many things if you feel so overwhelmed by it" and you have no idea how close I was to giving that exact response. BTW, my co-leader has 3 kids in multiple activities, too, but she manages to know where her kids have to be and pick them up on time!)
    ==========================================
    Liz
    DD (3/2010)

    "Make mistakes! Get messy!" - Miss Frizzle

  5. #25
    lizzywednesday is offline Red Diamond level (10,000+ posts)
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    Apparently, her kids want to earn Highest Awards.

    I got a text last week asking if the girls could earn the Bronze Award. I had to explain that the Bronze Award is the highest award a Junior Girl Scout could earn. It's 20 hours of "leadership service" in a project that aims to address a root cause of a community issue, but that's AFTER a Girl Scout earns a Junior-level Leadership Journey. The kids had the opportunity to earn their Journey during the 2019-'20 Girl Scout Year; we worked on Think Like a Citizen Scientist, which requires that each individual troop member create a SciStarter account because the observations piece for the Citizen Science project our troop chose are logged in SciStarter. Kids whose parents helped them create a SciStarter account earned the Journey; this woman's kids didn't have accounts.

    I checked to see how many emails I'd sent inviting everyone to SciStarter; starting in November 2019, when the kids picked the project, I sent no fewer than 6 emails telling people to sign up for our project team in SciStarter. Of 15 Girl Scouts in the troop, about 8 signed up. I moved ahead; short of signing them up myself (um, nope), I had done all I could. As a result, only 5 of my 6 returning Girl Scouts were eligible to earn Bronze in 2020-'21.

    Additionally, I explained that, not only did they have to earn the Leadership Journey + complete their 20-hour (minimum) Take-Action/Bronze project, the work had to be completed no later than 30th September 2021 for her younger child ... and her older child was not eligible because she's in 7th grade now. (Deadlines were extended nationally in 2020 due to COVID lockdowns impacting a lot of projects, so girls had to pivot & needed extra time. Extended deadlines weren't continued in 2021 due to easing of restrictions. It would very well have been possible for the older daughter to have earned Bronze last fall ... IF she'd completed the Journey. All I wanted was to have families signed up for the SciStarter project; this family didn't.)

    I sent a link to Council's Highest Awards page and a link to a blog post about the difference between Community Service and Take-Action/Leadership Service, while also emphasizing (1) parents cannot be the girls' Award Mentor; (2) Silver projects must be Mentor-approved; and (3) the girls have to be passionate about their project in order to be successful.

    It's my goal that, of 8 Girl Scouts in the troop this year, all 8 will be Silver Award-eligible by June 2022 because we have 2 Journeys on our year-plan. But ... I don't think these kids will earn Silver because their mom is so flakey.

    I have to check in with my service unit manager and membership specialist for an escalating consequences list that I can stick to instead of keeping her on what may end up feeling like "double-secret probation" - it's not. It's a laundry-list of complaints, concerns, and behaviors that aren't compatible with "respect myself and others."
    ==========================================
    Liz
    DD (3/2010)

    "Make mistakes! Get messy!" - Miss Frizzle

  6. #26
    Percycat is offline Platinum level (1000+ posts)
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    Hi Liz, Your post is confusing, but clearly you are frustrated with this family. I can't tell if you have a multi-level troop with some girls still at the Junior level or if your troop is now 7th Grade Cadettes. Regardless, I think I would focus the girls/parent on the awards the girls can earn.

    Instead of pointing out that the girls missed their opportunity to earn the Citizen Scientist journey with the troop and missed the deadline for earning the Bronze award, make it very clear what is required to earn the Silver Award. Since these girls did not earn the Bronze award, they will need to complete 2 Cadette journeys as a prerequisite to working on the Silver Award. Have your girls already chosen which journey(s) they want to do as Cadettes? If so, were the girls from this family involved in the decision? --- Let the mom know the troop's plans for completing the journey the troop selected. If the troop is not planning on doing a second journey -- or if the girls can't complete the journey with the troop --- let the girls and mom know of other options for completing the required journey(s). There are a lot of virtual journey options available that the girls can complete on their own [I had my girls signup, tell me what they learned, and either complete the TAP on their own -- or we decided to work as a troop to complete the TAP]. There is a facebook group -- Virtual Girl Scout Activities -- that promotes a lot of virtual options throughout the country.

    When my girls were Cadettes, we had a meeting and gave the girls notebooks with the Silver Award handbook. We discussed the process for earning the Silver Award and then brainstormed issues. Several of the girls decided to work on individual projects, but a few girls were interested in the same issue and decided to work together. My co-leader and I divided responsibility for mentoring the girls and informing parents of the requirements and expectations. We would regularly email/text the girls/parents to check on progress or offer suggestions. At this point, the girls should really be taking the lead on the project, but still need support for doing things they are not comfortable doing on their own (e.g., it was hard for several of my girls to make phone calls to various organizations, so we practiced and then sat by them while they called during our meeting time). The more you step back and let the girls take the lead, the better prepared they will be when when they start working on their Gold Award in a couple years.

    Working with parents who are not engaged is challenging. Fortunately, your girls are older now and should be taking on more responsibility for communication and decision making. I hope you and your girls have a great experience this year.

  7. #27
    lizzywednesday is offline Red Diamond level (10,000+ posts)
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    Quote Originally Posted by Percycat View Post
    ... make it very clear what is required to earn the Silver Award. Since these girls did not earn the Bronze award, they will need to complete 2 Cadette journeys as a prerequisite to working on the Silver Award. Have your girls already chosen which journey(s) they want to do as Cadettes? If so, were the girls from this family involved in the decision? --- Let the mom know the troop's plans for completing the journey the troop selected. If the troop is not planning on doing a second journey -- or if the girls can't complete the journey with the troop --- let the girls and mom know of other options for completing the required journey(s). There are a lot of virtual journey options available that the girls can complete on their own [I had my girls signup, tell me what they learned, and either complete the TAP on their own -- or we decided to work as a troop to complete the TAP]. There is a facebook group -- Virtual Girl Scout Activities -- that promotes a lot of virtual options throughout the country.
    You're right - I was very convoluted in describing the situation. There are two girls in the family; older girl is a current 7th grader, while the younger girl is a current 6th grader. Mom is ... consistently flakey and it's hard to know how much info she is reading or understanding until there's a problem. Like the text message about "the girls would like to earn Bronze Award" I got last week.

    My troop going into 10/1 is mostly 6th-grade Cadette Girl Scouts; in 2020-'21, I had a small troop of 5th-grade Junior Girl Scouts. In 2019-'20, they were 4th graders, so we focused on earning a Journey as preparation for them to earn a Bronze Award in 5th grade. Out of the 6 girls who returned for 2020-'21, 5 qualified for Bronze because they'd signed up for SciStarter while we earned the Citizen Scientist Journey in 2019-'20, as that made up the bulk of applying the work done earlier in the Journey.

    The bolded isn't the case in our Council. Bronze isn't a prereq for Silver (it used to be as far back as the late '80s and early '90s, when I was a Girl Scout - you had to earn that plus a certain number of the "Worlds to Explore" rectangles) and Silver isn't a prereq for Gold, but it's extremely nice to have.

    Silver only requires that girls earn 1 Cadette-level Journey; if the kids don't earn Silver, they then have to complete two Senior or Ambassador level Journeys to qualify for Gold, rather than Silver + 1 Senior or Ambassador Journey.

    I will be discussing Highest Award requirements with the girls more intensely in May and June, and I've created a single-page PDF for everyone that outlines the prereq's for all the "put in time somewhere else" awards Cadette Girl Scouts can earn.

    I have a mixed-age Cadette troop of mostly 6th graders and one 7th grader, with an open door for additional 7th graders from our disbanded sister troop to come in ... IF they renew this week. Otherwise, I'm removing parents & girls from my email lists.

    I had all of the girls in my troop last year vote on what kinds of badges, Journeys, and activities they wanted to complete this year.

    Based on everyone's feedback and what I learned about the girls I led, they've chosen Think Like an Engineer and the Cadette Outdoor Journey (we'd be focusing on those badge skills anyway) with a couple bonus badges, like Girl Scout Way and Space Science Researcher tossed in for fun. If we can run the Outdoor badges as off-site programs, however, we can pull in more stand-alone badges like Animal Helpers, Babysitting, and First Aid, which the girls expressed interest in, too.

    Take-Action Projects may also have to happen outside of Meeting time, but we're only beginning the Journey this week, so it's moot.

    When my girls were Cadettes, we had a meeting and gave the girls notebooks with the Silver Award handbook. We discussed the process for earning the Silver Award and then brainstormed issues. Several of the girls decided to work on individual projects, but a few girls were interested in the same issue and decided to work together. My co-leader and I divided responsibility for mentoring the girls and informing parents of the requirements and expectations. We would regularly email/text the girls/parents to check on progress or offer suggestions. At this point, the girls should really be taking the lead on the project, but still need support for doing things they are not comfortable doing on their own (e.g., it was hard for several of my girls to make phone calls to various organizations, so we practiced and then sat by them while they called during our meeting time). The more you step back and let the girls take the lead, the better prepared they will be when when they start working on their Gold Award in a couple years.
    The Silver Award handbook here is changing; Leaders were specifically told by our Council's Girl Awards Manager at our recent Leader Symposium NOT to download the Silver Handbook until mid-October. I think that expectations and standards for Silver are being realigned nationally, which is a great thing, especially if girls have Gold in their future!!

    The girls have already received notebooks as part of their supply bags; we will be talking more about Take-Action Projects, Community Service, root causes, and taking the lead throughout this year. I can definitely tell them to jot down all of those things as we move through the year!

    Girls (except DD, who will need someone else) will need to run their Highest Award project ideas through me before they are given the go-ahead - I'm trained as a Silver and Gold Mentor (and will probably refresh my training before my Cadettes are finally eligible, just to be sure I can explain everything properly and briefly) - and we now have to submit a letter of intent to Council before projects can begin.

    Working with parents who are not engaged is challenging. Fortunately, your girls are older now and should be taking on more responsibility for communication and decision making. I hope you and your girls have a great experience this year.
    Part of the reason I've asked the girls to create Gmail addresses for Girl Scout communications is so they can take more ownership of their troop and experiences. As I've continued to emphasize for parents every year, it's not MY troop; it's THE GIRLS' troop.
    ==========================================
    Liz
    DD (3/2010)

    "Make mistakes! Get messy!" - Miss Frizzle

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