The developments in various domains of the world have helped in many ways. There have been many advancements in the field of technology. However, even the most useful and remarkable invention like the Internet, has its own disadvantages. In addition, with the rise in social-media, there are more ways to harmful-gateways. One such negative gateway that has opened is CYBERBULLYING.
What is Cyberbullying?
Firstly, BULLYING is a force or dominance over someone for reasons as meaningless as entertainment.
Bullying is a term that usually defines ill-behaviour faced by school going children, committed by their peers. However, in today’s world it has become a term that applies for ALL the ages. There is usually some purpose or intent behind it. In addition, it is usually repeating in nature. It can be:
- Entertainment (this usually involves people with some thought instability)
- Power(this is because of some mean intention or to cause harm)
- Social status (it can be to gain popularity or some other social reason)
- Avenge(it can be because of some other initial incident)
It can cause stress, anxiety or affect the mental health in other ways. It can actually have a lot of serious consequences on the person(bullied).
Importantly, CYBERBULLYING is bullying taking place over electronic media. It is also termed as Internet Bullying
Nowadays, it is a growing and an alarming issue. It is just like traditional bullying. However, there is no escape space when it comes to cyberbullying. In traditional bullying, the person gets some space away from the bully. But since Internet is an all time available platform, cyberbullying can be more suffocating.
There are many number of social media platforms. As a result, there are various means a person can be bullied. Above all, cyberbullying just like bullying is more common in children. Many a time, they use mean, hurtful and negative content to spoil a person’s image. In other words, it is to frighten somebody.
Moreover, Internet provides a platform for an easy anonymity and draws wider attention. As a result, people who bully have started to blackmail and hurt people via this source. Also, India stands fourth in cyberbullying.
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HERE ARE SOME WAYS FOR PARENTS TO PREVENT OR STOP CYBERBULLYING!
There are many things that a Parent can do to prevent it. However, there is a need to know it first. A Parent or a Guardian should look out for signs in their children. Unnecessary anger or anxious behaviour after using the phone is the most common sign. In most of the cases, the parents never knew something was up with the child. Above all, the behaviour of the child can get worsen if he or she suffers bullying for long.
Here are the tips:
Talk to your children!
- Firstly, if you are sensing some odd behaviour, you should have a talk with your children. It is important for them to know you are there. It is important to have an open and true bond with them.
- Secondly, have discussions with them about their day and friends. Be their friend. In addition, you need to keep talking about Internet safety with them. They should be aware about what is right and what is wrong. Similarly, tell them how important it is to not share their passwords with friends or any other peer.
- Thirdly, have common grounds with them.
- Trust plays a major role in child-parent relationship. You need to be friendly with them so that they can confide in you.
- Similarly, you should make some rules that are agreed by both. You can limit their usage for smartphone and computer.
- Above all, take care about your kid’s behaviour when they use a phone.
- Importantly, if you and your children share an interactive bond, maintain that.
Learn Social Media!
- Now, this may seem absurd. But, it is very important.
- If your child is on social media networks and you have no clue about its working. You need to learn it.
- It is important because it helps you to get an idea of what your child uses.
- The best way is to ask your child, only. You can ask them about the medias they are on and about their profiles. This really gives you a base idea!
- This does not mean you have to annoy them about everything they do on the platform. It will make them more secretive.
- For instance, if you learn what Instagram is, from your child. You can see their profile and follow them. Enjoy their posts and stories but do not question them about every single like on it!
NEVER BLAME YOUR CHILDREN!
- Bullying has grave consequences on a person’s mental health. When it is about a child, it can affect them more. It is because they develop on such thoughts and can choose the wrong ways.
- Importantly, it is not your child’s mistake if he or she has been bullied. Above all, it is you who has to explain them, this. You need to tell them that it is not their fault!
- Be supportive and understanding. It is important to focus on the solution and not chew the problem continuously!
- You NEED to listen to them and their side of the story. Even if they committed a silly error, you need to let go. Nothing justifies bullying somebody!
- Also, if it has happened and solved, do not take away their phones. This is not the right solution. It can make them hide things from you. Instead, explain them the importance of sharing things with you. Let them know how willingly you are always there!
- Importantly, if they are sharing a problem with you, feel lucky! Many a time, children do not even bother to tell their grave problems to their own parents. So, be a parent who is also a friend.
CYBERBULLYING IS NO JOKE!
- If your children have approached you with a bullying problem, take it seriously. You cannot leave it to them to solve.
- Cyberbullying can go till extremes and the consequences can be harmful, as well. You need to tell them you are there and take action for it.
- Never tell them to deal with the problem themselves. You can never know the entire pain your child is going through, at his or her age, due to bullying.
- Also, if blocking or deleting the contact of the bully is not working, you need to involve the cyber enforcement and the police.
KEEP THE PROOF!
- If you are dealing with a cyber bullying case of you child or anyone, save thing!
- If there are messages, call records, emails or any other thing, keep screenshots. Above all, keep them printed and save with you.
- When complaining, you really need these and they do help! It verifies how it is actually cyberbullying and how bad it is.
- At some times, the bullying reaches to harmful threats then, it is important to call the police. You need to include law enforcement at such a time.
CHILDREN (OR ANY PERSON BEING BULLIED) SHOULD…
- Know that it is NOT YOUR FAULT!
- Always inform their parent or guardian!
- Not tell other kids or friends at school, about it! You can inform the School/College authorities and teachers, as well.
- NOT REPLY THEM ANYTHING ON YOUR OWN, reach out for help!
One really needs to take care about what sources they are using and sharing personal data to! Learning the importance of security of data stands important to prevent cyberbullying.
Above all, never suffer alone, call the authorities! Cybercrimes are a real thing and you can always seek help if anybody is troubling you. Though cyberbullying is on a virtual platform, it affects one in REAL. So, you should always be aware about your social-media security as much as you are, for your safety in person.
As a parent, you should always have an idea about your children and their use of social-medias. Be their friend and keep interacting! After all, you are the one from whom they can learn the best from!
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