|Parents Should Know the Things to Do When Their Child is Bullied|
Let’s face it, there would be no cases of cyber bullying if only we could find an effective way of monitoring our children’s use of the internet. All the effects of online bullying spring out from web correspondence and the best way to prevent online bullies from harassing our kids is to make sure that we know who they are communicating with over the internet.
But then again, close monitoring is easier said than done. We also don’t want our children to feel they’ve been controlled and grounded. So as parents, we have this dilemma that can become a bigger issue in the future. But the question here now is – what if your child has actually been bullied already, what should you do?
First and foremost, the most vital thing is to act quickly. As soon as you find out about it, there are several measures that you can take as a concerned parent. Here are some of them:
- Convince your child to tell you everything and instill to him that there is no point in hiding.Keeping secrets will just prolong his suffering.
- After you convince him, get hold of all the electronic and computer proof like messages from the email, chat room conversations, posts in forums and social networking sites, and comments,
- By the time you manage to compile them, you can then submit a complaint to your ISP, site administrators, or operator companies when it involves phone calls and messages.
- But when a physical, grave, or death threat is given to your child, you might have to call the police for corresponding charges.
Remember that although bullying involves a minor culprit, it does not deny the fact that there can be a physical threat to the child. Law enforcement will go the extent of filing misdemeanor charges that can result in juvenile delinquency.
After taking all the necessary steps to defend your child, you should also put in mind that the most important thing is helping him or her deal with the negative memories and trauma from the experience. Research shows there is a clear correlation between cyber bullying and low self esteem as well as suicidal thoughts.[i] Whether you choose to work things out as a family or seek the help of counselors specializing in children and youth who experience this kind of abuse, you need to act fast. Whatever your next step is, just make sure to pray for wisdom and help. Remember the words of Psalm 72:12 “He will help the oppressed who have no one to defend them.“ and Psalm 3:3 “But You, o Lord, are a shield around me. You are my glory, the One who holds my head high”. The Lord has a passion for defending the helpless and holding up the heads of those downcast. Teach these truths to your children and pray fervently for and with them.
[i] Hinduja, S. and Patchin, J.W. “Cyberbullying Research” Cyberbullying Research Center. www.cyberbullying.us (Accessed 02/20/11)