Every mother is concerned about their children being bullied. While this can happen the traditional way, it is also becoming increasingly common online. This is due to the prevalence of social media and online messaging being used for communication. Luckily, there are straightforward and efficient ways to teach your children how to deal with this problem.
A simple and effective method is to merely block any abusive people. Most online networking sites and apps, including Facebook, allow users to block communication within anyone they wish. However, the problem is usually that children want to retaliate, which can escalate situations, making them even worse.
Simply Don’t Respond
Bullies usually want to promote a reaction, which gives them the power that they seek. Advise your children not to respond, instead ceasing communication with the bully. It can be extremely difficult, but let them know that it is worth it in the long run.
Be Careful About Posting Photos
Many parents are connected with their children on social media. Now, remember, any photos you post on sites like Facebook can be seen by the world. Tagging your kids in certain family photos could be embarrassing and give ammunition to bullies.
The same care should be taken by your children when they post photos. The images displayed will be highly public to many of their peers, so they should give considerable thought before uploading them.
Maintain A Strong Online Reputation
People are being judged, more and more frequently, by their online profiles and activity. Just like your children would not do anything at school to reduce their dignity and respect, neither should they do it online. Care should be taken when expressing oneself on social media, because many people will be exposed to it. A post that may have seem fun in the spur of the moment can lead to a lot of embarrassment.
More and more people are using social media to display their emotions, such as venting their anger or expressing their sadness. Teach your children that this is not an ideal outlet, as it is highly public, and can give a lot of ammunition to online bullies. Better ways to deal with these emotions could be talking to a trusted friend or family member, or even writing in a diary.
Be Careful With Account Logins
Teach your children about online security. If they are using a computer at school, and are logged into social media or similar sites, they should know not to leave it attended. It is all too easy for a bully to access their account, then hack their Facebook page by posting insulting comments, which all their friends will be able to see. Tell them to simply lock their computer when it is not being used, or log out from all websites.
The same care should be taken with smartphones. Make sure that they have a secure password and cannot be accessed by anyone else.
Teach Children To Open Up About Bullying
Keeping the suffering, experienced from bullying, bottled up inside is a big risk factor for low self-esteem and emotional imbalances. One of the best ways to deal manage this, is for children to talk to someone they trust. Therefore, you should make sure that your children know that they can speak to you anytime about cyber bullying. If they do not feel comfortable talking to you about it, then a close friend or other family member is an alternative option.
Make Sure The School Is Dealing With The Issue
Your children’s school should be vigilant about dealing with cyberbullying. However, if you are unsure about this, then get in touch with teachers or the principal. They should make it clear that measures are in place to deal with all instances of cyberbullying. If you think things are a bit lacking, insist that they improve.
It is important for every mother to do the best job they can in helping their children deal with this new age of online bullying. Why it may be virtual, the consequences can be very real. Good communication and education will prepare your kids to overcome this issue and not let it detract them from the good things in life.