Bullying: A Big Complicated Problem with Many Simple Solutions

If each one of us untangled one string at a time...

Friday, February 19, 2010

Cyber Bullying. Parents Need Info...and Experts Need Parents

Mayor seeks to stop cyber-bullying

This meeting happened in Massachusetts but I recently went to one in the New York City area.

Meetings like this need to happen everywhere and community by community there need to be parent meetings that clearly lay out the problem. Cyber bullying is 40% about technology and 60% about parenting (and probably about 100% of peer pressure.) But parents are at a disadvantage. The uses of technology are changing every day. One day, you're worried about instant messaging and then the threat moves to the cell.

Not only are these types of meetings good for parents, they're critical for decision makers and professionals. Why? We need a realistic sense of what is actually happening with kids and their daily lives. Experts need to start listening to parents, as well. Parents are still the experts about their children and how to get them to open up and what they are capable of.

Parents are also the key to prevention.

Although many schools experience a low level of participation by parents, there's a way around that, too. Organize a parent task force to research age-appropriate programs for schools and homes. Slowly build interest and include parents who have some knowledge of technology and an interest in solutions. Don't stop. Don't give up. Our kids' emotional health is worth it.

Remember, it's a good new neighborhood our kids are in. It's not all bad. But just like all neighborhoods, we need a "neighborhood watch."

1 comment:

  1. When it comes to public insults and harassment there is supposed to be no freedom of speech. Unfortunately, right now, Cyberbullying is a big loophole; it needs to be classified as slander and libel. The problem is that the Internet is a safe haven for bullies because of the anonymity. There is not a more cowardly way to bully someone then from behind a curtain. But parents are the key. Parents need to get involved in helping solve the cyberbullying problem. If parents cared enough about their child being the bully or passing along the material as much as they care when their child is a victim, it would be a huge step forward. But then, of course, how do you know if your child is involved in cyberbullying? You need to monitor their Internet activity. Monitoring software like our PC Pandora records everything that happens on the PC. If your child is a victim, you will know; if they are a bully, you will know. Whatever the case may be with your child (victim or bully), you need to intervene and teach them how to be a Responsible CyberCitizen. Check us out at http://www.pcpandora.com to see how you can be a part of the solution instead of a passive part of the problem.