First let's look at some basic facts about what cyberbullying looks like kids today.
End Cyberbullying has a plethora of excellent information about how parents can get involved and even has some of the information broken down between age groups as I know many parents reading this are not only dealing with high school students!
This article also outlines some easy steps for parents to follow to set up responsible social media use for your kiddos!
When your child is experiencing cyberbullying there are many options for reporting that extend outside of the school. Be sure to know the appropriate actions to make it stop!
Talk with your student about these tips for THEM to know how to deal with cyberbullying!
TOP 9 TIPS FOR DEALING WITH CYBER BULLYING
- Never respond to anything that has been said or retaliate by doing the same thing back. Saying something nasty back or posting something humiliating in revenge may make matters worse or even get you in to trouble.
- Screenshot anything that you think could be cyber bullying and keep a record of it on your computer.
- Block and report the offending users to the appropriate social media platform.
- Talk about it. You may not feel it at the time, but you seriously are not alone. Talking to somebody about bullying not only helps you seek support but it documents evidence and will take a huge weight from your shoulders.
- Assess how serious the cyber bullying is. If it is light name calling from somebody that you don’t know, it may just be easier to just report and block that user.
- Report it. If you are experiencing cyber bullying from somebody you go to school or college with, report it to a teacher. If somebody is threatening you, giving out your personal information or making you fear for your safety, contact the Police or an adult as soon as you can.
- Be private. We recommend that you keep your social media privacy settings high and do not connect with anybody who you do not know offline. People may not always be who they say they are and you could be putting you and those that you care about the most at risk.
- Talk to them. Sometimes it may be appropriate to request that a teacher or responsible adult hosts a mediation between you and the person who is bullying you online, if they go to the same school or college as you. A mediation can be scary but is often incredibly powerful. It is essentially a face-to-face conversation between you and the person bullying you in a controlled, equal environment.
- Sympathise. Always remember that happy and secure people do not bully others. People that bully are going through a difficult time themselves and will often need a lot of help and support.
Open communication is going to help your child feel like they can share with you what's going on behind that phone, iPad, or computer. The more places your child can feel positively connected the more protected they are from the ramifications of cyberbullying. Check out this school list of clubs for additional opportunities for your child to connect! Also be sure to check out the Student Life Resources section of the WHS website!
Finally, print this card out for your child as an option to keep in their wallet/purse/backpack in case they are ever feeling isolated or alone - they know they have options for support!
Let's keep our children thriving, healthy, and happy and officially put an end to cyberbullying!