What Is Cyberbullying? Identification, And Prevention with SecureTeen
What is cyberbullying? This question has been answered in various ways but have we really considered how adversely it is affecting us? Let’s take a look at a case study of Channing Smith. This is a very recent case that depicts how mental health is affected by the feeling of embarrassment and bullying.
Channing Smith, a 16 years-old high school junior killed himself with a gunshot. His family and classmates said that it was a result of ‘cyberbullying’, and they asked for a thorough investigation.
The family and classmates believed that he killed himself because of being outlined online as ‘bisexual”. Channing Smith was a student at Coffee County Central High School in Manchester. He reportedly committed suicide after his friend shared an explicit conversation that happened between them, online.
His brother Joshua Smith said that it was humiliating and there was no way he could be facing the people at school after that. The conversation was explicit and just after a few hours of it being posted online, Channing Smith shot himself. His last post at Instagram was:
“I really hate how I can’t trust anyone because those I did were so fake”
Read complete story about him here: https://www.nytimes.com/2019/09/30/us/channing-smith-suicide-bisexual-tennessee.html
A private conversation being posted on a public platform made Channing take this heavy step. Do you think your kids are secure? Are they safe from these cyberbullying acts? There is a lot to learn about it and there is a lot that can be done to prevent it. Let’s not let another Channing do this.
What is Cyberbullying?
With kids being more attached to their cell phones and other digital devices, cyberbullying becomes a big concern. It includes the range of harmful phrases and words being used in the digital world to let others down.
It can take place through messages, posting, and stuff. The most prominent and major cause of cyberbullying are social media platforms where kids find the freedom to post or say anything they like without considering the consequences.
However, now it has been observed, studied, and revealed that cyberbullying is causing great damage to the kids. Just like Channing, there are plenty of kids out there who are the victim of cyberbullying. They either silent their voices or do this sort of action.
In 2014, a study was conducted and published in JAMA Pediatrics that concluded that bullying was a source of both suicidal thoughts and suicide attempts. But, cyberbullying is more likely to cause suicidal thoughts and dangerous self-harming behavior.
Dr. Adesman, the chief of developmental and behavioral pediatrics at Cohen Children’s Medical Center of New York, stressed the dangers of cyberbullying. According to him, cyberbullying has amplified the impact, potential mortality, and morbidity of bullying. And, the consequence of cyberbullying goes a long way because what is posted online at the moment can hang around in cyberspace and reach more people.
Being a bully is not an easy approach as well. Kids who think they aren’t enough on their own and are afraid that they might be bullied, often become bully. They adapt the behavior of the people they are afraid of, to fit right in. There is a lot of other causes of being a bully too. However, parents can and they should control this so that their kids don’t harm anyone.
As Channing’s mother said, “Just because you think it is cute or funny to make somebody humiliated or embarrassed, think again. Because if somebody would have realized that, my son would not be dead”. Read more facts about cyberbullying here.
Some Special Concerns
With the rise in digital media forums, photos, posts, and content being shared with the public online, the dangers increase. The content that individual shares, be it good or bad, it is taken into the permanent records of their activities, behaviors, and views. This public record is often taken as an online reputation thus making it an issue for the teens later.
Cyberbullying can harm the reputation of the kids, not only those who are being bullied but also for those who are taking part in it. It has some unique but important concerns, such as:
Digital platforms are being used for almost 24 hours a day. The internet and the world never sleep so it is quite difficult for the kid, who is being bullied, to have relief at any moment of the day. They will be afraid all the time that their post is being watched over and over again.
We know, nothing on the internet is temporary. Most communications done on the internet remains there for a long time unless it is deleted or reported. When there is a negative reputation for a lifetime, it can affect kids’ academics, college life, employment, and other areas of life.
Hard to Notice for the Elders
Since it is all happening online, it is hard to notice for the parents. Parents are often unaware of the things happening inside their kids’ phones. They leave their kids with their digital devices thinking that they have them at home at least. That’s why cyberbullying has become hard to notice and most of the kids face this agony on their own.
Know more about it here: https://www.stopbullying.gov/cyberbullying/what-is-it
What Should Parents Do?
Bullying is an important concern for parents, especially because it is proven to be very dangerous for the kids. When it comes to cyberbullying, the danger doubles because it is opaque to the parents. Many parents are unaware of what is happening with their kids online. Since they don’t interfere in their digital lives, they know very little about it.
Not all teens can come to their parents asking for help whenever they are being cyberbullied. Mostly teens keep it to themselves and the damage is inevitable in this case. For this reason, it is suggested for the parents to keep an eye on their kids when they are using their digital devices. Parents can do that easily with the help of a parental control app.
A parental control app like SecureTeen helps you in monitoring your kid’s device and knowing what is going on with them. You can look into their calls and messages history, social media profiles, and so much more. Although you get to see everything, it is highly suggested not to burden your child with an authoritative attitude just because you know something.
Know what is going on with the parental control app and take the necessary steps when required. Don’t try to be over their heads all the time suggesting them how to handle everything. Be friendly, and jump in only the time when it is necessary.