CYBERBULLYING - LEARN THE SIGNS
What happens to kids during childhood shapes who they become. Bullying is often written off as a rite of passage as “kids just being kids.” However, bullying can have lasting physical, mental, and emotional effects.
Cyberbullying is Hard to Notice – Because teachers and parents may not overhear or see cyberbullying taking place, it is harder to recognize.
Is a Child Being Cyberbullied or Cyberbullying Others?
What a Parent Should Know:
Many of the warning signs that cyberbullying is occurring happen around a child’s use of their device. Some of the warning signs that a child may be involved in cyberbullying are:
- Noticeable increases or decreases in device use, including texting.
- A child exhibits emotional responses (laughter, anger, upset) to what is happening on their device.
- A child hides their screen or device when others are near, and avoids discussion about what they are doing on their device.
- Social media accounts are shut down or new ones appear.
- A child starts to avoid social situations, even those that were enjoyed in the past.
- A child becomes withdrawn or depressed, or loses interest in people and activities.
Parents play a key role in preventing and responding to bullying. If you know or suspect that your child is involved in bullying, there are several resources that may help.
Utilize tips and tools to talk to your child1 about cyberbullying. Opening lines of communication before your child is involved in bullying makes it easier for them to tell you when something happens. It is also important to work with a school2 to help prevent bullying before it starts.
What Kids & Teens Should Know:
- Never respond to harassing or rude comments.
- Save or print the evidence.
- Talk to your parents or guardian if you are harassed; get help reporting this to your ISP, school, or local law enforcement.
- Respect others online.
- Only share your password with your parent or guardian.
- Change your passwords often.
- Password protect your cell phone.
- Use privacy settings to block unwanted messages.
- Think before posting or sending photos – they could be used to hurt you.
- Contact the site administrator if someone creates a social networking page in your name.