Could your children be victims of cyber bullying? Could they be cyber bullying others? If that was happening, would you even know about it?
Cyber bullying is the #1 fear of both parents and children, and with good reason. Cyber bullying is worse than physical bullying in so many ways, and it effects the majority of children – whether they’re a direct victim, a perpetrator or a bystander.
The Worst Case Scenarios Of Cyber Bullying
The list of teens who have committed suicide as a direct result of cyber bullying is far too long – people like Hope Witsell, Ronan Hughes, Sarah Lynn Butler, Hannah Smith, Amanda Todd, Megan Meier, Rachael Neblett, Jessica Logan, David Molak, Pheobe Prince, Ryan Halligan…and the list sadly goes on (watch the video above to see their pictures). This isn’t just a list of names; they’re real people who never made it as far as adulthood, who were tormented online to the point they couldn’t handle it anymore and saw no other way to escape.
Can you imagine finding your child hanging in their bedroom, like some of the parents and family members of these children did? All because of their online activities that could have been avoided, mostly on sites like MySpace, Kik and Ask.fm
Why I Want To Help You
My name is Ruth Dearing. I’m a mother of 2, #1 international best selling author, public speaker, and your Peaceful Digital Parenting expert. After reading so many stories of cyber bullying and its effects, I’ve become very passionate about learning as much as possible about how to help parents avoid their children becoming the next victim of cyber bullying. I don’t want your child to go down that track, and I know that we can avoid that from happening.
How To Know If Your Children Are Being Cyber Bullied
This post/video is called “How to know if your children are being cyber bullied without spying on them”, so let me answer that question for you now.
One of the reasons cyber bullying often gets so bad is because most children don’t tell their parents it’s happening. So step 1 is to recognise the signs of cyber bullying. These include things like:
- Your child withdrawing from activities they otherwise enjoy
- Your child being uneasy after being online
- Your child covering up their online activities
- Your child being more quiet than usual, or just not being themselves
These things may seem obvious, but so many parents miss these signs until it’s too late.
Other Things You Can Do To Help Your Children
What are some other ways to know if your children are being cyber bullied without spying on them?
The key is to open the lines of communication with your children. To do this you need to really listen to your children, give them plenty of opportunities to talk with you, and always be approachable. You want THEM to come to YOU with their issues, as opposed to YOU trying to PRY it out of THEM.
Social Media and Cyber Bullying
As far as social media and messaging goes, it’s important to have ongoing conversations with your children about the effects of cyber bullying. They need to understand what cyber bullying is and how it affects other children so they don’t perpetrate the behaviour themselves. They also need to understand that cyber bullying often results in anxiety, depression and suicidal thoughts, and that they’ll need help if they get targeted.
You can only help them if you know about it, which is why there has to be a rule in place where you can follow them on whatever social media platforms they’re using.
That DOESN’T mean you should comment on their posts or be in their face online, but they need to understand that you’re following them to HELP them. You’re not SPYING behind their back and you’ll monitor their activity for THEIR benefit, NOT yours.
Where To Now?
I’ve spent years learning everything possible about cyber bullying as well as online predators, social media use and other topics relating to cyber safety. My aim is to share valuable information with parents that can save lives, and I do exactly that in the least amount of time possible as I get how busy you are.
This video is barely scratching the surface of cyber bullying and keeping your children safe online, there’s so much to know! If you’ve found this information useful and you’d like to know more, the best way forward is to join me on my next live online seminar. You can register for free at https://www.peacefuldigitalparenting.com/webinar-registration
It’s free to attend, you can listen from home, and it’s packed with lots of useful information. If you can’t make it live then just register anyway and you can watch the replay. There’s no obligation on you to do anything other than listen to the end in order to benefit from all the tips that I share. I look forward to seeing you there 🙂