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Cyberbullying

What is cyberbullying?

Cyberbullying is using the internet, social media, or text messaging to intimidate, put-down, spread rumours or make fun of someone and is usually done repeatedly. 

Cyberbullying can damage a young person’s feelings, self-esteem, reputation and mental health.

  • Canada has the 9th highest rate of bullying in the 13-years-olds category on a scale of 35 countries.
  • 47% of Canadian parents report having a child victim of bullying.
  • Any participation in bullying increases risk of suicidal ideas in youth.
  • Girls are more likely to be bullied on the Internet than boys.
  • The most common form of cyber-bullying involved receiving threatening or aggressive e-mails or instant messages, reported by 73% of victims.
  • Avoids using their mobile device or computer.
  • They appear upset, withdrawn or angry receiving notifications
  • Your child becomes more secretive using about their online activities
  • Your child is reluctant to leave the house to attend activities, school, social gatherings, etc.
  • They begin falling behind in school and grades suffer.
  • Refuse to go to school
  • Your child appears sad, frustrated, impatient or angry much more then usual.
  • They are having trouble sleeping
  • Less of an appetite

Also,

  • Your child suddenly deletes social network profiles
  • A lot unknown notifications are coming through
  • They have blocked people from their social media accounts, phone, and/or email

It is extremely important that you talk with your child to reassure them that you are there for them and there to help the situation. 

Here’s what to do:

  • Keep your cool and don’t respond to the hurtful message.
  • Keep evidence by saving or taking a screen shot of the message in case you need to show proof.
  • Block the person(s) responsible for the hate.
  • Remember you are not alone, tell somebody that you trust will help you with the situation.
  • Protect yourself by keeping your passwords private.
  • Be very careful with which photos you share online.
  • Report fake profiles of yourself.
  • Report bullying to the social media site it happened on.
  • Being bullied is very hurtful, do not hesitate to reach out for help whether it be an adult, teacher, or any of our online resources.
  • Reassure your friend that they do not deserve what is happening to them.
  • Ask your friend what they need and help them find a solution.
  • Help your friend talk to a trusted adult.
  • If it feels safe to do so, stand up for your friend using neutral words like “I’m unfollowing you because what your doing is hurtful.” – taking a stand may allow others to do so.
  • Report abuse on social media.
  • If its safe, ask the person to stop.
  • Check on your friend from time-to-time so that they know that you care.

Other things you can do from making situations worse:

  • Do not forward or share hurtful statuses or photos.
  • Do not be a by-stander.
  • Remaining silent could be interpreted by approval of the cyberbullying. Reach out to the victim and tell them you disapprove – this could save a life.
  • Do not wait and do not tell yourself its none of your business – you don’t want to regret it years down the road.