Belle always says “I don’t understand humans”, but she keeps trying to figure them out, fit it, get along and be included. She just doesn’t have the social/ emotional skills for it. today I left her alone in the arena to ride her horse with the other girls while I got something to drink. when I came back she was agitated and said that the girls were talking about someone who was annoying, wouldn’t tell her who, and wouldn’t include her in the conversation. Belle was spiraling down into depression and self loathing, but was talking about everything else in her life that has gone wrong on top of this. I initially considered giving her the old “fight the bad thoughts” pep talk and then decided to talk to the girls in a way that might model problem solving for belle and give the girls the hint that she has feelings too and nobody likes to be left out (these are twofaced catty girls, but I was trying not to let my feelings about them influence how I resolved the situation).
I simply said, ” hey, belle was wondering if you were talking about anyone she knows when you said someone is annoying, I told her probably not, but I thought I would ask.”
belle was slightly embarrassed at first and then relieved when the said, ” oh, no we were talking about julie’s cousin. belle doesn’t know her, but she’s really annoying.”.
Belle took a deep breath, laughed and asked them if they ever saw the annoying orange on utube. they laughed and said yes and discussed a few episodes with her.
They might have been talking about her, BSing me, or being truthful, but either way the issue got resolved without accussations or hurt feelings.

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