Cyber Bullying

What a Parent Should Know

We've all heard the term "cyber bullying" floating around, but do we really know what it means? Especially when it comes to children in school? What if it is happening to your child? How can you handle it as a parent? These and many other questions are ones that all parents, especially of school aged children, should be asking themselves these days.

What exactly is cyber bullying?

If you aren't very up to date on the technology of today, if may be a little hard to wrap your brain around. But basically, it is any degrading, threatening, or harmful words directed at a person from another person using modern technology. Put simply, it is regular bullying, but without physical confrontation and it usually takes place online or another form of electronic communication.

When does it happen?

Cyber bullying usually takes place after school hours when children aren't in direct contact with one another, but are communicating through technology while doing homework or having down time of any sort. If two child are friends on facebook, follow each other on twitter, have each other's phone numbers, or even have each others email addresses, cyber bullying can easily occur.

How can I prevent it?

There are several things you can do as a parent to prevent cyber bullying. Probably the most important is to educate your children on the dangers and harm of cyber bullying. Make sure they feel that they can ask you questions and speak to you about it at any time. If they aren't aware of how people can harm them or how they can harm others in this way, the chances of cyber bullying occurring are increased. Also be sure to monitor your child's access to technology. Depending on your parent style, this can mean many different things. The most important thing to remember, though is that the more access and opportunities a child has to be bullied or to bully greatly affects the number of children that experience psychological harm on a daily basis.