7 Steps to Combat Cyberbullying
1. Look for Telltale Signs
Watch for possible signs that your child could be cyberbullied: Avoids the computer or cell phone. Withdraws from family or friends. Shows fear or sadness. Decline in grades. Loss of sleep. Lack of eating.
2. Have a Candid Conversation
Discuss cyberbullying with your child. Make sure he knows that cyberbullying is using either the internet or cell phone to spread rumors, post pictures, or threaten others. Talk about the possible effects and outcomes of cyberbullying.
3. Ask Your Child About Her Online Experiences
Invite your child to tell you about his experiences online, and LISTEN. Spark conversation by asking: Have you ever received any hurtful messages or e-mails? Have you ever sent an e-mail, text, or instant message out of anger?
4. Suggest Ideas for Prevention
Suggest ideas for prevention he may have not considered. Protect by not posting personal information or provoking photos. Someone else can use what he posts against him. Choose a password that is difficult to guess, and keep it from friends.
5. Seek the School's Support
Seek counseling at the school for your child, if needed. Utilize school counselors to start a mediation program to attack cyberbullying system-wide!
6. Let Him/Her Take the Lead
Empower your child to actively combat cyberbullying as a leader. Motivate your child to start an anti-cyberbullying group at school or online to educate peers.