If you suspect or learn your child is engaging in cyberbullying:
- Understand your child could be engaging in harmful behavior that may be against school policy and/or the law.
- Thoroughly review the incidents.
- Speak with your child, and explain the harmful impact of cyberbullying. It’s important to discuss the negative impact cyberbullying has online and in real life.
- Listen to your child’s explanations, discuss expectations, and share potential ramifications if the cyberbullying does not stop.
- Explain how using the internet leaves a trail, and people engaging in cyberbullying may face ramifications.
- Consider installing a cyberbullying prevention app. Software to detect and stop cyberbullying is available, and may be helpful in addressing challenges. It can provide youth with an opportunity to pause, reconsider harmful posts, and learn to make better choices.
- Regardless of which child started, make sure your child understands not to engage or retaliate.
If your child’s negative online behavior continues or escalates, consider seeking professional help and/or programs in impulse management, social media addiction, gaming addiction, etc., as necessary.
It also is essential to remember your child is a child who may make mistakes and needs direction. Your response should depend on the severity of the incident(s) and focus on lessons learned, expectations, and better behavior going forward.
If your child posted harmful or defamatory content, it should be removed.
WHAT IF YOUR CHILD IS ENGAGING IN CYBERBULLYING?