Today’s youth face many challenges that were unheard of when I was young. Social life is now focused online and the risks of Cyberbullying are everywhere. There are some things we can do to keep our children safe from Cyberbullying.
Keeping Your Child Safe From Cyberbullying
As a mother of boys, I often get unsolicited advice. The remark that I always seem to hear is, “Well, at least you won’t get all the drama.” I’d like to report that this misconception is most definitely not true. In fact, my experience has proven that boys feel and love deeply. Young boys show emotion, get their feelings hurt, and carry around sadness just like girls or any other human being. And in today’s technology-centered society, Cyberbullying is a big concern among our children.
Cyberbullying And Our Children
The current trend of cyberbullying is ravaging our sons and daughters. Bullies use the anonymity of the Internet or their cell phone to attack, harass, demean, and bully children. Our society’s reliance on technology invites the world of bullying into every aspects of life. A victim can view a message anytime or anyplace.
Cyberbullying can’t merely be defeated by deleting a menacing message. It is often difficult to stop the onslaught of images, comments, and sharing Social Media promotes. This can lead to higher rates of depression and anxiety in victims. Often a child experiencing cyberbullying has low self esteem and a higher chance of committing suicide.
It is estimated that 1 in 3 children have been targets of online cyber threats. More than 25% of adolescents have experienced repeated bullying over the Internet and cell phones. With all the numbers and statistics available regarding cyberbullying, it appears that boys suffer greater chances of being threatened by cyberbullies than girls.
8 Tips To Protect Children From Cyberbullies
Here are 8 suggestions to help our children navigate the pitfalls of cyberbullying:
- Know their passwords and sites they frequent. This will allow you to intervene if a situation develops.
- Friend your child online and watch his activity. Your mere presence can deter rude comments or risky online behaviors.But be aware that there are many Social Media sites that you may not know about. Keep a close eye on their phone and computer.
- Look for sudden changes in your child’s behaviors. Do they suddenly avoid using the computer or demonstrate a lack of enthusiasm for Social Media or their cell phone?
- Begin a conversation about feelings and difficult subjects early. Encourage your child to talk to you. Listen and avoid lecturing- you want to create an environment that fosters communication. My boys also tend to talk better while doing an activity.
- Instill a good sense of Social Media etiquette in your child. We teach them manners and acceptable behaviors. Why shouldn’t we arm them with appropriate online skills?
- Collect evidence if you suspect cyberbullying is a problem. Utilize screenshots, print off messages, and save incriminating data to build a case. Documentation will be needed to get assistance from the authorities or school officials.
- Create “no technology” zones. Take time away from devices and focus on other activities. Take back family dinners and game nights. Keep phones and computers out of bedrooms and private areas.
- Frequently monitor your child’s Internet and device usage. Know what apps your childfavors. Know who their friends are online. You can purchase apps that allow convenient access to all his accounts, cell phone, and location.
The information in this inforgraphic is important to know:
Data suggests that parents can impact how their sons learn to express and control emotions. Boys present a unique problem when it comes to encouraging open communication and talking about their feelings. Cyberbullying can be a difficult situation for any child, but it can be compounded by society’s beliefs that boys need to be stoic and unfeeling. By keeping open communication with our children and watching for the signs of bullying, we can help to keep our children safe from Cyberbullying.
What advice do you have for keeping your child safe from Cyberbullying?
This post is a part of our series 31 Days of Tips for Raising Boys. Each day throughout the series we are discussing a different topic regarding raising boys. I’d love for you to follow along and share this series with other parents of boys who may need some support or just to hear that they aren’t alone in their journey of raising boys.
Check out our next post: 1o Assumptions We Should Stop Making About Boys
Find all of our posts in one place on our series home page: 31 Days of Tips for Raising Boys
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