When I recently retired, I wanted to return to my first love: helping children. I began researching the potential causes and effects of bullying and some possibly helpful responses for victims to fend off attacks or harassment. I enjoy sharing recommendations and resources via this blog and have published two books for younger children on bullying, kindness, and self-esteem. Siggy and the Bullies is available at my website (www.blanchedudley.com), at Amazon.com and BarnesandNoble.com, as well as from many other online bookstores. Siggy’s Parade will be released by New Horizon Press in June, 2014.
Today I wanted to highlight a very informative site, www.cyberbullying411.org. Below are a few tips from that site on responding to online bullying. This information is probably most suitable for kids ages 10 and older.
Being Bullied Online?
If you are being cyberbullied, there are things you can do to stop it:
Ignore the person. Sometimes the easiest thing to do is to ignore the person and go on about your business.
Log-off if the harassment is bothering you.
Block or delete the person. If it is happening on Instant Messaging or some other place online that requires a ‘buddy list’, you can block certain users based upon their username, or delete them if they are in your buddy list. You can also block emails that are being received from specific email addresses.
Change your information. If someone has hacked into your profile, change your password. If someone repeatedly sends you messages (like, ‘add me to your buddy list’ over and over), consider changing your username or email address.
If there is a profile that was created about you without you knowing, contact the company who runs the site to have the profile or language taken off.
If you are upset about what is being said, talk to someone you trust. Don’t feel like you’re alone. If you feel scared or overwhelmed, maybe even trapped, it’s definitely time to talk to an adult. If you don’t feel comfortable speaking with a parent, seek out other adults or authorities like a teacher, coach, school counselor, a youth group leader, or other adult family member such as an aunt or uncle.