Bullying has been around for several years in the world. With the new technological advances, bullying has managed to enter the cyberspace as well. Although several instances of cyberbullying are being repeated every minute, it cannot be easily defined as well. Cyber bullying is more or less repeating attacks that are hurtful and shared widely online to make the humiliation even worse. Kids in schools are often a victim of cyber bullying when they do not conform to peer pressure. Compared to traditional bullying which happens only when the bully is around, cyberbullying can take place 24/7 due to full time internet access these days, compounding the issue several times over.
Interestingly, the term cyberbullying is not always sued by kids when they find themselves being bullied. They use different terms like drama, overacting, etc. to describe the situation. It is up to the parents and the educators to educate today’s generation about the harmful effects of cyberbullying and also how to recognize if they are being bullied or not. Cyber bullying was not taken seriously initially, as the people in charge were not aware of how widespread the issue was. However, after suicides started being reported with cyber bullying cited as the cause, it was time for the authorities to take a step up and deal with the issue.
Who Is Vulnerable To Cyber Bullying?
The truth is that any kid can be a victim of cyberbullying regardless of who they are or what they did. However, some groups of kids tend to be more vulnerable than others. Anyone who has special needs or learning disabilities, or is gay, transgender or bisexual are more prone to cyber bullying by their peers. However, even popular kids who are normal in every perceivable way can be a victim of cyber bullying because they threatened the happiness or popularity of the bully. This is why parents need to be vigilant and talk to their kids to find out what is going on in their lives. Many kids feel helpless and alone when they are cyber bullied and feel they have nowhere to turn. IF they get the right support at the right moment, they will be able to overcome these issues and learn to stick up for themselves.
What Can Help
Every case of cyberbullying is different. However, there are some general pieces of advice you can offer its victims:
· It’s not your fault.
Victims need to understand they are not at fault for being bullied. Once they are able to understand this fact, they will be more confident in their dealings with the bullies.
· Don’t retaliate or respond
Bullying of any kind is done to hold power over the victim. When they see that you are not affected by their actions or words, they will soon lose interest and move on. You can also try to sue humour to defuse the situation.
· Save the evidence
Since cyberbullying leaves a trail behind, make sure you save every piece of it. This way, you have proof to report to the authorities in case the bullying goes overboard. Experts also suggest keeping a record of the cyberbullying incidents before filing a complaint in order to be taken more seriously by the school authorities.