Remember when you were at school? If you weren’t part of the ‘cool crowd’, chances are you experienced bullying at some stage. It isn’t pretty and it can leave a lasting impression.
I know, because it happened to me.
All I can think about, though, is how much worse it must be for kids in this day and age. Computers, mobile phones, smartphones, social networking, Twitter, texting, they’re all such a part of our lives now, and especially part of our kids lives – schools are using ipads for grade-schoolers – and this fact of modern society means one thing: bullying is no longer confined to the school yard.
Cyberbullying is a growing problem, and it gives bullies more power, more reach, more potential for damage. The ability to torment another child is now only limited to the power of the device the bully may be using, whether text, Facebook or some other networking system, and their vindictive streak.
Kids bullying other kids will unfortunately be part of our society, but as a parent, that doesn’t mean you should sit back and let it happen. Be aware, be in touch with your kids and watch for any changes in behaviour. There have been enough tragic suicides of kids through cyber bullying. I say, take a stance.
Be someone your kids can trust. Educate them, both on the consequences of bullying, and how to deal with it if it happens. Let them know they can come to you with anything.
Click here to learn more about cyberbullying. STOP CyberBullying (www.stopcyberbullying.org) is an organization dedicated to ending this horrible manifestation of our modern society.
Kids can be terribly cruel, and cyberbullying can take on many different forms, even death threats. So be aware, be in touch, and protect your children.