Preventing Cyberbullying is the first goal of any parents worried about Internet safety for their children. As I’m used to say, Cyberbullying is a snake that crawls underground and when you realize of its existence it has already bitten its victims (tipically: your children).
Most of the parents ask me if there are ways to prevent Cyberbullying and are surprised when I reply by asking them who they are in this System.
Why is preventing Cyberbullying so hard?
Cyberbullying is a multi-factorial matter, a complex issue, and we have to look at the whole System if we want to fight this monster.
Whether you are a parent, a teacher, or some other professional, you need to understand where you are inside this System in order to learn how to deal and how to prevent Cyberbullying.
Let’s have a look at the System and let’s build our multi-factorial matrix: it helps us to check how many ways we have to prevent Cyberbullying.
Many factors lead to many ways to prevent Cyberbullying
Cyberbullying is an extension of something is already happening in the real world
- places of the spare time (outdoor spots i.e. park, street, etc...)
It seldom occurs only on the Web: most of the times it’s an extension of something is already happening in the real world, and this makes preventing Cyberbullying easier.
The limits of the Cyberbullying follow the psychological development of the children. So we have the usual concentric circles: himself/herself -> parents -> relatives -> close friends -> large group -> outer world.
While the boundaries are changing over time, chances you find the origin of the issue inside the proper circle. i.e.: Usually teenagers are in the “large group” step: they usually make friends inside their school, or their large sport team.
They usually don’t go beyond it, so if something happens chances are it happens among their school or sport team friends: you check the reasons inside these friends circles. When your children grow up, their horizons broaden, they know new friends at the pub, at a concert, etc... so if something happens you check the reasons inside this enlarged friends circle.
Please take notice we are talking about mental age, that may differ from the registry age.
We are used to think at the cyberbully and the cybervictim, but let’s remember Cyberbullying is more focused on the humilitaion of the Victim (while traditional Bullying is more focused on the physical harm).
A Cyberbullying act without observers is a futile act without any strength.
Your role factors:
- parent or relative
- teacher, educator, etc...
- external roles like policeman, social worker, etc...
Once you undertand where you are inside this System, then you discover this issue may occur in many ways. And you find there are many ways to prevent Cyberbullying and get much better idea of how to keep your child safe.
How can you help your children to prevent Cyberbullying?
Preventing Cyberbullying is possible, if we do the right steps.
While there are many roles with different coping strategies, we can deduce some general and universal principles and apply them to our ways to prevent Cyberbullying.
Be present as adult.
Whether you are a parent, a teacher, a social worker or someone else, you shall make your children feel there will always be a non-judgemental, caring, empathetic, strong point of reference.
Help your children to build his/her own boundaries.
Cyberbullying is fluid and very intrusive in our minds and our lives. So our children need to learn how to build strong psychological boundaries, a psychological space where they choose who is allowed to enter. A physical space may help too.
Create a strong relationship with your children.
Children seldom talk about their online activity to the adults...unless they feel they can really trust them.
Create a network with other parents.
Maybe your children won’t tell you about their online activity, but chances are they talk about it with their friends. And maybe their friends talk about it with their parents. And their parents may report about your children online harassment to you.
The great plus...
As I said Cyberbullying is a snake that crawks underground, so maybe you nor your children nor the parents of your children’s friends are aware of what’s happening. This is when a deeper monitoring comes in very handy. You need something that allows you to deeply monitor your children online activity.
Consider Parental Control Software as a partner
Parental Control Software is the best partner for parents to keep their children safe from cyberbullying.
You don’t want to use it as a way to control your children: you want to use it as a way to monitor your children online activity and help them to spot issues.
As you can see preventing Cyberbullying is possible, if we do the right steps.
You’re 1 click away from giving a try to Familoop Safeguard:
Protect your child today!