Top 8 Warning Signs of Cyberbullying
With the advancement in technology and the demands of children for digital devices, access to the internet is increasing day by day. What parents don’t realize at the right moment is that this access and demands are indulging their kids into serious dangers like cyberbullying. At first, it might seem like a normal thing that can be handled by your kid, but is it?
A report from the American Academy of Pediatrics shows that children starting from third grade who own mobile phones are prone to cyberbullying. Parents who ignore the signs of cyberbullying are the ones who regret it later. A professor of psychology at Bridgewater State University said,
“Parents often cite the benefits of giving their child a cell phone, but our research suggests that giving young children these devices may have unforeseen risks as well.”
There have been statistical reports that showed that 43% of the children have been the victim of cyberbullying at one or another point of their lives. And around 58% of kids don’t even tell their parents.
To read facts about cyberbullying, you can check some more statistics and information about cyberbullying:
With such statistics and facts, it is necessary to know if your kid is fine. You need to look for warning signs to find out if your kid is facing cyberbullying.
8 Warning Signs of Cyberbullying:
If you are worried that your kid might be suffering silently and hiding it from you, there are some signs that you can look for. If they seem to exhibit these actions, they are much likely to be cyberbullied and you need to do something about it. These warning signs of cyberbullying are:
1. Nervous and All Anxious When Using Social Media
Do they often feel insecure, nervous, or jumpy when they are using social media in front of you? That might be because they are hiding something from you. Teens are very emotional and they feel embarrassed even when they are the victims. The best way to overcome is to keep the devices in commonly used areas.
2. Sudden Weight Loss or Gain, Or Any Other Physical Ailment
Are they experiencing stomachaches, headaches, and appetite changes recently? Is it all sudden for you? Then it is surely all sudden for them too. Stress and depression can induce physical symptoms and if ignored, it can increase.
3. Sleep Pattern Changes
If your kid is sleeping too much or not sleeping at all, it is time to take note of his activities. Restlessness is a sure impact when it comes to cyberbullying and it leads to sleep disturbance. Thinking about what is being said and shared about them on the internet makes them go all anxious and sleepless all the time.
4. Loss of Interest in Usual Activities
It is a great indication of something being wrong when the kids have just lost their interest in their favorite hobbies or activities. They might have lost all the interest in the fun part of life because for them, there is nothing left in their life after being humiliated this much.
5. Making Statements About Suicide
Are they comfortable talking about suicide? Well, it is a red flag for you. Teens might become secretive at this stage of their lives but they give hints whenever they talk. Now, it is up to you to take notice of the things they say and find out the underlying cause. If they are talking about suicide too much, talk to them and find out the reason as soon as possible.
6. Nervous About Going to School
Most of the kids when faced with cyberbullying, refuse to go to school or public places. It is this feeling in them that whatever is shared on the internet to humiliate them is available to everyone. Everyone knows their secrets. So, they start avoiding people. If they are making excuses about not attending school, rather than scolding them, talk to them and know the reason.
7. Angry While Online
Have you noticed their aggression when they are playing online games or doing something else online? If they slam-door or shut the windows in anger when playing their games, there must be a reason behind it. Maybe someone in the gaming chat is humiliating them.
8. Unable to Share Their Online Activities with You
Whenever you sit with your kids, trying to chat about what is going in their social media life, they ignore you or change the topic. You can see the nervousness right on their faces whenever you ask such questions. They surely want to hide things from you to avoid further humiliation. Little do they know that only you can help them in this tough situation.
The Role of Parents in Cyberbullying
Being a parent of a bully or a victim is equally frustrating and difficult. When a child becomes a bully, it surely starts from their house or peers. Parents need to notice their moves to stop them from hurting anyone.
When a child is victimized, he can hardly understand what is going on. They don’t share with you; they don’t find any solution and they go in this dark valley of depression where they feel that there is no way out. Most of the time, their last resort is suicide which is very painful for parents too.
Parents can, however, make much difference by being a step ahead. If you keenly keep an eye on them and know what signs of cyberbullying to look for, you can surely help them. One of the most important necessities of this process is a parental control app.
Parental control software like SecureTeen can help you monitor their social media activities. So, no matter how secretive they are, you can always know what they are up to. Not to irritate them all the time, but these parental control apps are there to help you understand your child and save yourself from bad consequences.
Here are some of the tips for parents and kids to prevent cyberbullying: https://www.parents.com/kids/problems/bullying/18-tips-to-stop-cyberbullying/