What is Cyber bullying?
Cyber bullying refers to the process in which a bully carries the taunts and the abuses outside of the school premises or the workplace and shares it in a person's personal space through different online social sites such as Facebook. Most of the times, these abuses tend to be harsh comments or aggressive posts to humiliate someone in public. Moreover, it turns out to be a nightmare if this is taking place on the internet by some strangers. The unfortunate fact is that no child in this world is immune to bullying. Children and teenagers are the most to be affected by such behavior. Hence, the parents must take adequate actions to stop bullying.
The Steps to take to Deter Cyber bullying
The very first step you can take is to recognize the preliminary symptoms of cyber bullying. These may involve any prominent changes in your child's behavior. They may show sudden changes in his/her behavior and he/she may show signs of extreme anxiousness, anger, depression or moodiness. He or she may get addicted to smoking or drinking habits, sudden degradation in their academic performance. These are some of the signs which every parent needs to recognize in his/her child's behavior. The parents will notice the change in behaviors if they are paying attention the behaviors of their children.
In today's busy life where the family members do not have enough time for each other, the children are most affected as they get the least chances to share something with their parents. Reports have found that the parents are the last to know about their child being bullied. Hence, it is very important the parents take out time from their busy schedule to talk to their child daily. The parents can include discussions regarding their friends in school, on social networks, they can ask their kids about what they do in school, who they hang out with, who are their enemies and all. If you talk to your kids in a friendly manner regularly, your child will feel free to reveal if he/she is being harassed or bullied. If you only approach them when you notice changes in behaviors, they will start to think you are only fishing for information. Their thoughts might be, “well she only has time to talk with me when I am doing something wrong.” You might only concerned about your child, but they think you are only trying to get onto them for their behaviors.
Never ever encourage anyone to use the internet in order to bully someone. Firstly, you should warn your child that he/she should not share the passwords to the email accounts or any social networks. Even if they are on the social networks, they should not befriend any stranger. They must be friends with only persons they know in real life. You should make sure that your child gets enough encouragement to share such matters with you. In any case if your child receives any cyber bullies, then make an effort to take them to the school administrator or to the bullies’ parents. You should not confront the bully on the internet except to say “please stop.” You take the risk of being accused of cyber bullying if you start to get harsh with the bully.
You should never leave your child on his/her own to handle the cyber bullying. Never permit your child to give replies to the online bullies. Moreover, you can report the bully to the particular ISP i.e. internet service provider. You can also report it to the website administrator who if needed may delete the cyberbullys' account. You child might already feel isolated and if you continue not to support them, this will further this feeling. I do believe you should allow them to deal with the bullies on their own at first, unless this is not working or is causing more harm than good. Letting them take care of the situation themselves will give them confidence to take care of situations when they arise in the future. You do not want to be one of those parents that fly in and rescue their child every time there is some little hint of danger. This does not teach the child to take care of their problems. Furthermore, it may make the bullying worse.
Most of the schools have the habit of conducting anti-bullying programs. If your child's school does not have such program, you should insist that such programs be implemented. Such anti-bullying programs conducted in schools enable the students to get knowledge on what actually happens in real world and how to handle such situations.
It is also a good idea to talk to your local and state official and get them to provide and support community activities that will come out against bullying of all kinds. The more people and organizations you can get involved in the education against bullying, the better.
In every family, children, especially the teenagers insist on having privacy in all matters. Although it is not always possible to keep an eye on the kids' computer activities all the time, it is always preferable to the computer in the common areas of home.
If you find out your child is cyber bullying someone else, you should take shift action to put a stop to this activity. It might require taking computer privileges away. They may get very upset with you, but this is a better alternative than sitting in a juvenile or adult detention center for their actions.
Cyber bullying has become a growing problem among children and teens. Now-a-days this is not just restricted to online sources. This has been found even on cell phones or mobile phones. It is very easy to send abusive messages to people on their cell phones. Hence, it is very important that the parents keep an eye on their children and their activities without letting their kids know of it.
The most essential thing is to teach your kids about the adverse effects of cyber bullying and teach them to respect each other. It is very essential to teach them that the bully victim may face negative effects due to harassments or embarrassments in public. It is always important on the part of the parents to teach their kids good manners and right ethics.
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