Our kids are completely immersed in technology these days, with a majority of their communication coming through text messaging, instant messaging and social networking sites. This constant contact via technology also allows school bullies to hound victims 24 hours a day and invite others to pile on.
How can you tell if your child is being subjected to cyber bullying? Parents completely out of the loop with a child’s technology usage can find it hard to detect when something of this nature may be occurring. Generally speaking, behavioral changes accompany attacks. Not any of these signs on its own is an indicator; however, more than one could warrant a discussion with your child:
Appearing upset after internet use
Being afraid of leaving the house, especially to go to school
Being secretive about internet activity
Changing attitude, dress or habits
Clearing the screen when parents enter the room
Crying for no apparent reason
Getting behind in school work
Having headaches, stomachaches or a lack of appetite
Having trouble sleeping
Hesitating to get online
Spending unusually long hours on the computer
Teens with motorcycles have had tragic endings in the past. Before you allow your child to purchase a motorcycle, do a simple web search. Enter the words "teen" and "motorcycle" in a search engine. The results will be shocking. There are times to be a friend and times to be a parent. Be the parent!