Watch Dr. Debra Pepler as she talks about the impact of Cyber bullying on your child, and how to help them.
VIDEO TRANSCRIPTS: Cyber-bullying
Our children live in a very different world than we lived in, and one of the biggest differences is that they connect with each other through electronic means -- through the Internet, through cellphones, through other electronic media -- in a way we couldn't even have imagined when we were growing up.
When we first started to study cyber-bullying we thought, "Oh, maybe it's the children who don't have an opportunity to bully in the regular ways who find this very covert, sometimes anonymous way, to hurt other children, and to use their power aggressively."
The research very clearly shows us now that the children who bully through cyber means are the children who also bully in traditional means.
Similarly the children who are victimized through electronic means are the very children who are victimized through traditional means.
It's just another way that children have found to use their power aggressively.
How do you help your child understand this?
Again, keeping the lines of communication open is very important, ensuring that your child talks to you about this, ensuring that your child understands how to be responsible in cyberspace the same way they're socially responsible in real life, in real relationships, because the relationships are no different.
And encourage your child to use the same strategies, to tell if they're not safe, if they know someone else is safe, and not to get caught up in this. Too often, both in real life, and in this virtual space our children inhabit, there's an energy, there's an arousal, there's a need to belong that draws them into bullying.
Help them tune in to their inner voice that says, "Is this right? Or is this wrong?"
And if it's wrong, ensure that they don't join in and make the problem worse. And then they can think about what they could do to make the problem better.
Cyber Bullying Tips:
- Cyber Bullying is just another means of bullying
- Encourage your child to use their judgement
Debra J. Pepler, Ph.D, C.Psych, Distinguished Research Professor of Psychology, York University