I would have to say a lot has changed since we were kids. Playing outside in the woods, building forts, and just making up games to have a good time. Today, kids are nose deep in the technology world. Play stations, Xbox, The Wii, Online games, computers, smartphones, and many other technological devices. With this being said, times are changing, and bullying has taken a whole new level. It’s not just in the schools, at the bus stops, or on the bus. Bullying has landed a front seat right in the Cyberworld, yes you got it, CyberBullying.
What is Cyberbullying? It is bullying that takes place using electronic technology that is deliberate and repetitive. Electronic technology includes devices and equipment such as cell phones, computers, and tablets as well as communication tools including social media sites, text messages, chat, and websites.
Did you know that 87 percent of kids today have witnessed some kind of cyber-bullying? Approximately 34 percent of kids today have acknowledged they have experienced cyberbullying. 15 percent of youth have admitted to cyberbullying others. Would your child know what to do if they were cyber-bullied? 24 percent of our children have reported that they would not know what to do if they were cyber-bullied.
With October being National Bullying Prevention Month, I wanted to share this information to you parents, and also inform you on some signs to look for in determining if your child may be a victim of cyberbullying.
15 Signs Your Child May Be a Victim of CyberBullying
- Stomachaches, headaches that just started, but the doctor finds nothing wrong.
- Sudden weight loss or even weight gain that cannot be explained.
- Suicide attempt, suicide thoughts, or even talking about suicide.
- Mood swings during or after going online.
- Shutting down, closing the laptop, throwing their phone in the middle of an online or phone session
- Your child starts lying that they are ill or using any other means to be able to get out of going to school.
- Withdrawing from friends and family.
- Behavior changes and depression.
- Your child suddenly does not want to be online when that was all they ever wanted to do.
- A child may say “there’s a lot of drama at school” or “I have no friends” to avoid using the word bullied.
- A child’s Grades start to drop when they have never had issues before.
- Your child tries to hide their screen from you, whether it be a phone or computer screen.
- Gets defensive when you ask them simple questions about their friends.
- Not able to sleep at night.
- Bruises or any other marks on them that are not accounted for.
I have provided a short Video “Secrets Teens Keep On Their Phones | Inside Online Bullying” just for a little insight from me to you! Do some research of your own! See how many kids are affected by this daily, like any other normal parent life gets away from us, we become invisible to certain things. That’s normal, especially with working families, trying to keep up with bills, house repairs, sports and more! Life gets hectic TRUST ME, I GET IT! If I didn’t have bad luck, I would have no luck at all!
You can make your own assumptions about cyberbullying, but it has gotten out of control. Know who your child is talking to, know what they are talking about. Yes, they deserve their privacy to an extent, but it will not hurt to ease drop every now, to make sure no one is picking on your child or vice-versa! Did you know that 81 percent of young kids today think cyber-bullying is easier to get away with that in person? Did you know only 1 in 10 kids will inform a parent or guardian of their cyberbullying? 81 PERCENT GUYS!!!! Would your child come to you if they were being bullied? What can we do as parents to stop this? Inform our kids on how to handle the situation and not try and take care of it yourself! In my next blog, we will discuss ways to prevent and stop cyberbullying, and how you can teach your kids the best way to go about dealing with cyber-bullies. Until next time my friends.