August EFAP News: Cyberbullying 101
August 2016 Newsletter:
Getting a Handle on Harassing Behavior
STAGGERING STATISTICS SPEAK FOR THEMSELVES
Approximately 1 out of every 4 students report being the victim of bullying during the school year (National Center for Educational Statistics, 2015). Almost 20% of US high school students were bullied in the past year, approximately 15% online (Center for Disease Control, 2014). And typically only 36 % report bullying (Petrosina, Guckenburg, DeVoe, and Hanson, 2010). Of students that reported cyberbullying, 29% of teens on social media reported having an experience resulting in a face-to-face confrontation with someone after the online attack (NCES 2013, nces.ed.gov/pubs2013).
WHY IS THIS HAPPENING?
Social media has changed our world – how we communicate, how we market products and ourselves, how we gauge our popularity, and how we react to others. Somehow society has popularized knowing everything about everyone all of the time. Recent estimates indicate that over 90% of teens are now online and about 80% of them use social media.
Most cyberbullying is done by individuals lashing out because they are hurting somehow themselves. Often bullies are victims of abuse or a disorder, and they don’t know how to reach out for help, so they strike out at others to attempt to feel powerful and in control of a small part of their lives.
As much as we want to protect our kids and remove them from this new scary social arena, it is better to understand the playing field, educate yourself and your kids, and learn safeguards and proper protocols.
MY CHILD IS A VICTIM OF CYBERBULLING, WHAT SHOULD I DO?
Console your child and find them supportive resources. Reach out to your school principal, counselor, or police officer. Contact a mental health professional or call E4 Health. You will need guidance and counseling to successfully navigate this situation and to find healing and peace for your family.
Avoid responding to any harassing communications. Make a print copy and an electronic copy of the harassing message/post. You may need to involve the police, school officials, or other parents. If the harassment involves a threat, definitely involve the police. Most states recognize cyberbullying as a crime now.
Check and tighten security settings on computers, phones, websites, and apps. Utilize as many blocking scenarios as you can. Attend this month’s webinar to learn specifics.
Be vocal. Wherever the harassment occurred – internet service provider, social medial website, cell phone, or social app – contact them and file a complaint.
Many schools are implementing an anonymous cyberbullying program. Whether it is phone or web-based, the program allows kids to anonymously report cyberbullying activity without fear of backlash. Often kids want to do the right thing by reporting harassment or defending someone being hurt; however, the fear of being bullied themselves often prevents kids from reacting. Studies show that such programs have reduced bullying by 25% or more. If your child’s school doesn’t have such a program, talk to them about starting one.
MY CHILD MAY BE A CYBERBULLY, WHAT SHOULD I DO?
First and foremost, understand that your child may be hurting. You may want to consider having your child evaluated by a professional such as their pediatrician or school counselor to help find out what is going on and guide you towards the appropriate support for your family. He or she may speak more freely with a counselor than with you.
Also remember you can reach out to E4 Health any time, any day for guidance.
Bullying and Social Media
As social media becomes more and more a part of our children’s lives, how can we determine which platforms are age-appropriate and safe? This webinar will give you suggestions on ways to protect your children on social media; provide warning signs of cyber bullying and empower you to proactively monitor your children’s online activity.
REGISTER TODAY! Space is limited
Click on the time you would like to attend above.
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Unable to make it to the scheduled webinars?
We have them archived for your convenience. Visit
www.HelloE4.com click on E4 University, then click on Webinars to search by webinar title.
THIS MONTH LET US
BE YOUR RESOURCE FOR:
to deal with the often-significant emotional stress of bullying or harassing behavior
Online learning via our webinar, “Bullying and Social Media” on Tuesday, August 16th
Articles on topics related to bullying and harassment
Tips on how to help reduce threatening behavior in our workplaces, schools, and daily lives
Referrals to support resources in your area
For whatever work or life issue is on your mind, or for anything related to daily living that you could use some extra help with, let us be your resource. It’s free, it’s confidential, and it’s available to you, as well as your family and household members.
Just call or log on to get started.
e4health administers the College’s EFAP program. To access their comprehensive web site, with many tools and articles, go to the e4health web site.
Username: middlebury college
Or call them at: 800-828-6025
(phones are answered 24 hours a day, 7 days a week)