Effects of cyberbullying–a real threat to your children!

November 12, 2010 by  
Filed under Parenting, Teenagers/Tweens

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Is your child falling prey to cyberbullying?

KIDS ARE FROM KRYPTON, PARENTS ARE FROM PLUTO: Radio update Nov. 11: Today we turned to a more serious topic than in the past several shows. The effects of cyberbullying was the topic…and stressing the insidiousness of this kind of bullying was the main message. The “effects of cyberbullying” are not just about namecalling and teaching your  kids, “Sticks and Stones…” This is bullying to extremes…on the Internet and into cyberspace.

With cyberbullying, it’s done through the new techno-world: on Facebook, MySpace, YouTube, IM and text messaging on cell phones. Some kids even make up new websites, with names such as, “WeHateKevin,” or steal passwords and send out bullying messages to others, disguised as the original password user. The effects of cyberbullying are devastating and ruining lives. Lately in the news there have been reports of suicides due to cyberbullying by kids as young as 12! 

The effects of cyberbullying is worse than bullying ever was for several reasons:
• It’s a 24/7 campaign, so kids can’t go home to get away from it—it follows them.
• You can’t see the bullies and deal with them directly.
• With a push of a ‘send’ button, the meanness, threats and character assassination goes viral—it’ everywhere in cyberspace and you can’t take it back!

Here are some tips for kidsto help avoid the effects of cyberbullying :
• Remember that anything you post can be sent anywhere, copied or even changed.
• Only post information, photos or videos of things that you think is OK for the world to see.
• If you wouldn’t say it to someone’s face, then don’t post it on-line.
• Make sure your password is something that others couldn’t guess, like your birthday, pet’s name, etc.
• If you are the victim of cyberbullying, feeling the “effects of cyberbullying” or even know someone who is…tell someone.
• If the messages you are getting are threatening and scare you, make sure you save all messages and turn them over to the police.
• Be careful not to become a cyberbully yourself, in retaliation to be bullied.
• Take a stand—don’t participate in cyberbullying if your with friends who are.

Here’s what you as a parent can do to help your kids avoid the effects of cyberbullying:

Top 5 Tips of the Week:

1. Understand that cyberbullying is very real and the effects of cyberbullying can be devastating.
2. Be a safe haven for your kids to talk. Don’t over-react, yet take it very seriously.
3. Know that your child may be a victim and a cyberbully at the same time.
4. Save any cyber-messages if there are threats of harm and call the police.
5. Show your kids you love them…through your words and your actions.

Enjoy your kids!

Have the effects of cyberbullying struck your kids?  What do you think we should do about it?  Please feel free to leave a comment below.

Comments

3 Responses to “Effects of cyberbullying–a real threat to your children!”
  1. Thanks for this valuable information…!

    I’m invloved as much as I can in ‘Stop Bullying’ campaigns all over the Internet and in person. I played Uncle Brown in Disney’s ‘Camp Rock’ Movies. Teens and Tweens all over the world have seen those films, as the Jonas Brothers play my nephews and Demi Lovato my protege…My Followers on Twitter and I discuss the impact of bullying a lot… Along with self-esteem… I believe the two go hand in hand…

    Demi like myself was bullied all through school. In fact I personally write about it a lot on my Twitter (@danielfathers) to my teen and tween followers…

    Bullying in person, or in cyberspace is an epidemic! The more awareness the better…

    This evening I read a story from a father whose son committed suicide at the age of 14 as a result of being continually bullied since 5th Grade. His name was Ryan. I share his name to personalize this problem, that can eventually KILL…Fact… Bullying can lead to death… FACT !

    Thank you for this article and sharing an awareness…

    Daniel Fathers

  2. Helen says:

    Some good points.
    Often overlooked is the role that family inadvertently play in INSTIGATING cyberbullying.
    For example, photos of family holidays or activities innocently posted on Facebook by a parent, well-meaning aunt or family friend can all too easily be found, changed & reposted by other people.
    I rarely post personal pics in blogs or social network sites that have identifiable faces – anyone who knows us well enough to be interested will see photos/videos through direct means anyway.
    So as well as being supportive, I think the onus is also on parents to exercise due diligence when WE are social networking, and tell people who have photos of our kids that we do not want those pics going on the net.

  3. Dr. Vicki Panaccione says:

    You are absolutely right! Anything that goes onto the social network sights are unfortunately fair game.
    Check out the blog about Smartphones to make you even more cautious about sending or posting photos/videos.
    Thanks so much for your informative comments! Enjoy your kids!

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