Cyber Bullying is a major problem. For some of you who may not know what cyber bullying is, cyber bullying is a form of bullying that takes place entirely online through devices such as phones, tablets, and computers. Cyber Bullying happens to everyone, kids are cyber bullied because of their gender, race, ethnicity, and disability. Cyber bullying is meant to hurt, humiliate, expose, and harass others (Steele). Cyber bullying has a huge effect on kids to the point where they don’t go to school, they don’t sleep or eat, and they are trying to hurt themselves or commit suicide. Cyber bullying and normal bullying cause kids to feel shameful and worthless. Kids should not feel this way, and this shouldn’t be a problem kids have to face. Kids are exposed to bullying early on in life during school and depending on what it’s like it could either get worse or better. For someone hopefully, it’s better. Bullying has been taken to another level using social media, kids need to realize what is happening to others and why it’s affecting them.
Why do kids bully? They bully, because they’re jealous, they want to get even, they have been bullied themselves, or they do it because it seems fun to them (Steele). Kids bully so it makes them look more powerful or cool to other kids. Kids also do it, because they see their close friends doing it or they want to be part of a popular group, so they do it. There are many different types of cyber bullying, besides just social media (Steele). There is harassment, stalking, taking unwanted pictures, threats, and blackmailing (Steele). There is more to cyber bullying than just Instagram, Snapchat, and Facebook. In cyber bullying, boys are the main stereotype to cyber bully, but the girls have higher stats and percentages than boys (Gaba). That doesn’t mean, boys, don’t bully it just means girls are more likely to do it (Gaba). Girls are more likely to gossip, spread rumors, and post pictures (Gaba).
There are two different types of bullying there is traditional bullying and cyber bullying. These two types of bullying are similar because harm is still being done to others to hurt them, the bully still has power, and the incidents happen repeatedly (Chardutta). Bullying is different from cyber bullying, because the bully is bullying the victim face to face, it happens in the halls, locker rooms, and classrooms, and the victim knows when and where it will happen (Chardutta). In cyber bullying, the bully is protected by the internet, it doesn’t matter when or where the victim is it will happen, and the internet incidents will or can go viral (Chardutta). In both types of bullying people have no remorse, but people are a lot less remorseful when it comes to cyber bullying (Chardutta).
Cyber bullying can really affect a person’s mental health. There are many harmful effects that are caused because of cyber bullying (Berry). Some mental effects are depression, anxiety, self-harm, and violence (Berry). As a parent, guardian, or authority member if you notice a kid who is acting very strangely, make sure to keep an eye on them, they may have anxiety or depression. If the kid has severe depression or anxiety, you will notice them not showing up for school, not eating, not talking, or not sleeping. If a kid or close friend has started saying goodbye to you or giving you his or her favorite items, they would never give anyone, you need to contact help right away. These are two major signs of suicide. If you contact someone, you just saved a kid’s or your friend’s life and they can get help. Those examples above aren’t the only reason kids try to commit suicide, it’s because other kids tell them to, they tell them that they’re better off if that kid isn’t here. Those things should never be coming out of someone’s mouth. It doesn’t matter if you get along or not, you never tell someone else that. A big question is for those people when that kid’s parent finds that message and confronts you what do you say then? This is a major thing that goes back to kids not realizing how they are really affecting others.
When a kid is cyber bullied, more than likely their parents do not know anything. Kids try to keep their parents out of it, to avoid making it worse. Most parents do not know their child is being bullied, but they can sense something is wrong. Some parents have no idea how bad it is until they find their child is no longer with them. When parents lose a child, they break. They blame themselves for everything. This is a big thing kids must realize, when you tell someone to kill themselves and they actually do it, look at what you just did to those parents. Look at how you just crushed those parents. If you are a parent and you realize something is wrong with your child, meaning they keep giving excuses to not go to school or to leave school, there not really eating, they don’t talk a lot. As a parent, you need to sit down with your child and say what is wrong, what’s going on. When they tell you what’s wrong, you go to the authority. They’re probably going to tell you no, still contact the authority. If you are a parent of a bully, you need to stop it. If you are allowing your child to hurt someone else, then there is something wrong. As a parent, you need to say enough is enough, and punish them correctly. If not for that happens, then that kid doesn’t care what he or she does. As a parent or guardian, you can’t bury yourselves away from technology, you need to watch your kids closely on their social media (Bowden). At the end of the night, take your kid’s phone away and tell them they need a break and that it’s family time (Bowden). As a parent, guardian, or authority member you can show that you do not tolerate bullying and you can tell kids it’s not tolerated (Steele). If kids see that parents and other authority members don’t approve of it and that it won’t be tolerated, the kids will stop.
A huge example of bullying and cyber bullying was a couple of years ago when Netflix released a show called “Thirteen reasons why.” The reason this is referenced is, that it tells the story of Hannah Baker and how she was bullied, and how she ended up committing suicide. It talks about the things that happened to Hannah, that you should never ever do to someone. In this show, she talks about thirteen certain classmates who hurt her so badly, that she did what she did. At the very end of the show when her parents find her, passed away in the bathtub her parents are broke, devastated, and extremely sad. Her parents blame themselves. One thing is though when watching this show or if a lot of you already have if you feel like it’s seriously affecting you, please do not watch it. If you are watching it and starting to have ideas turn the tv off and go talk to someone immediately or make a counseling appointment right away. As for others, this is not for the encouragement it’s to show what happens to kids in real life and with some kids what the ending is.
Cyber bullying has short- and long-term effects on the victims and bullies (Hurley). Short-term effects of the victim are that the victim will feel isolated from their peers, they feel ashamed, they avoid school, and they have poor school performance (Hurley). Long-term effects of the victim are that the victim will have chronic depression, suicide thoughts and suicide attempts, substance abuse, and difficulty establishing trust within friendships and relationships (Hurley). In reverse, the bully’s short-term effects are having increased suspensions from school, truancy risks, and difficulty maintaining social relationships (Hurley). The bully’s long-term effects are having substance abuse, not being educated or employed, or being abusive towards their spouse and child (Hurley). Cyber bullying can be a very traumatic experience for kids (Bowden). If kids are suffering from those effects, they should make appointments with therapists, join help groups, or even join treatment programs (Kvarnstrom).
Cyber bullying is a major problem that needs to be fixed. No parent or guardian wants to walk into a room and see their child is gone right in front of them, or get a call saying their child has died all because of cyber bullying. With the help of parents and other authority members, we can help these kids. Parents and other authorities can show kids that it’s okay to talk to adults and that it’s okay to stand up for themselves. We can make sure these kids, don’t hurt themselves or feel lonely. This is a big problem that needs to be changed, and kids need to realize it as well.