Is My Child Being Cyberbullied vs Is My Child a Cyberbully?

25% parents are worried about cyberbullying
45% 12-15’s know someone who has been cyberbullied
87% rise in reported cyberbullying between 201-13

We know that children find it difficult to talk about being cyberbullied and that it’s hard to get away from like face to face bullying. Many children don’t tell their parents. This may be exacerbated by the fear that parents will take away devices or ban their internet use. So it’s vital that parents, carers and teachers know the things to look for in a child. They may:

• unexpectedly or suddenly stop using the computer, device
• seem nervous or jumpy with an instant message, text message or email appears
• avoid school or socialising in general
• be angry, depressed or frustrated after using their computer or device
• avoid discussing what they are doing on their device or computer
• become withdrawn from family and friends

A good, three minute film, to watch is Risks Children Face Online: Cyberbullying

If you discover that your child is being cyberbullied then you should:

1. offer them reassurance and support
2. help them to keep the evidence
3. report the incident to the internet provider – so they can remove the content, block the sender and take other action if necessary.

Is my child a Cyberbully?

None of us want to think that our children could bully someone else. But many children who have never bullied anyone face to face before could find themselves being drawn into cyberbullying, often without realising what they are doing.

So, it’s important to be aware that:

• children might say things online that they wouldn’t dream of saying to someone’s face
• they might participate in a mean conversation on a social network without thinking about how the recipient may feel
• most children who have directed a mean or cruel comment to someone online don’t consider it to be cyberbullying.

Stay aware.

Julia

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