Cyber-bully Disconnected — Real Advice for Real Life from the American Nanny
Real Advice For Real Life
Parenting Expert Advice from Author and America’s Nanny,
CALIKID4u: I know who u r. I c u everyday.
WHIZKID2: Who is this?
CALIKID4u: U better watch ur back cause I’m watching u.
WHIZKID2: Umm come on, it’s not funny. L Who is this?
CALIKID4u: This user is no longer available.
In school days past, bullies were found in gym class, on the playground, in the cafeteria or in the locker room. Today they are lurking in cyberspace.Their message is the same, but their mode of communication is different.
How times change.
Cyberbullying is bullying that occurs in electronic space. It uses e-mail, cell phone and pager text messaging, instant messaging, chatrooms, websites (think Snapchat, Instagram, Facebook and other free personal sites geared towards youth and young adults), digital videos (like You Tube), and personal blogging to deliberatly and repeaedly show hostile behavior towards an indidual or group.
.And it’s a growing trend.In a recent study of over 1500 internet using adolecents, “over one-third of youth reported being victimized online and over 16% of respondents admitted to cyber-bullying others. While most of the instances of cyber bullying involved relatively minor behavior (41% were disrespected, 19% were called names), over 12% were physically threatened and about 5% were scared for their safety. Notably, less than 15% of victims told an adult about the incident.”  In the age of technology electronic bullying has taken center stage.
Why Electronic Bullying
Unlike traditional bullying where in most cases the bully was bigger and stronger than their target or in the cases of girl to girl bullying where isolation and exlcusion are the primary modes of attack – more polular and well liked than their victim, electronic bullying provides a nearly anonomnous forum for bullies to communicate their message.
Eleectronic social media provide a one size fits all opportunity to bully, eliminating the sterotypical physical and social markers of Traditional bullies. With free email and instant message accounts, websites and chatrooms, bullies can virtually create their own identity- making it sometimes difficult to identify and track who the bully is. Today’s bully can be anybully.
Electronic bullying also provides direct, usually unsuperived access to their target making it easy to communciate their message without being caught. In instant messaging, text messaging or chatrooms conversations are hardly monitored or censored and leaving no consequences for using threatentning language or harrassment. On websites such as Snapchat and Facebook, users can customize so that only “friends” can view their pages making it difficult for parents to monitor.
What You Can Do
Because electronic bullying can go on easily undetected, it’s important for parents to openly talk with their kids about the dangers of electronic bullying and to set rules for internet and cell phone usage.
Keeping computers in a common area of the house provides a way for parents to supervise computer usage.Kids are less likely to bully others and are more likely to share if they are being bullied if they know you are watching.
Set rules about what type of sites are acceptable for your children and teens to visit and check their internet history. Only allow them to add friends that you know to their instant messaging accounts and encourage them to only open emails from people that they know. Conisder using software to impose your rule.
Impose consequences for breaking the rules. Set up security measured on your kids computers. There are many types of software that can prevent your child from visiting unauthorized sites.
Keep an eye on the cell phone bill. Question exessive or increasing text messages or calls from the same number.
Create your own Snapchat or Facebook account and monitor their pages and the pages of the people linked to their sites. You may be unpleasantly surprised with what you find.
Report harrasing communications to service providers. Many internet service providers can cell phone carriers have policies in place to handle harrassing communications
More Parenting Advice:http://www.usa.gov/Topics/Parents-Young.shtmlhttp://www.usa.gov/Topics/Parents-Teens.shtmlhttp://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/parenting.html
Michelle is an active member of the nanny community. She is the founder and president of Boston Area Nannies, Inc., a local non-profit educational organization and has served on the International Nanny Association Board of Directors.
She is called on by the media as a nanny and parenting expert and has been affectionately dubbed America's Nanny. Michelle has appeared on television and has been featured in print.
Podcast of Interview with
Books by Michelle LaRowe
A Mom's Ultimate Book of Lists: 100+ Lists to Save You Time, Money and Sanity - Grocery lists. Checklists. To-do lists. Lots of people love--and live by--lists. And parents are no exception. Today's families are busier than ever, and moms don't have the time or energy to search and scramble for the parenting information they are desperately seeking. This handy, practical reference guide will save time, money, and sanity for today's busy women.
Working Mom's 411 is your one-stop resource guide for navigating through the often choppy waters of managing kids, career and home.
Nanny to the Rescue - America's nanny offers a large dose of healthy parenting advice with secrets for raising happy, secure, and well-balanced babies and toddlers.
Nanny To the Rescue Again - Faced with multiple choices regarding school, friends, and activities coupled with the ever-widening influence of the outside world, parents of 6-12-year-olds need help. America's nanny is back to offer a large dose of healthy parenting advice with secrets for raising happy, secure, and well-balanced children.
To learn more, visit www.michellelarowe.com
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