Top Tips for children age 14-18
- Listen, and offer support and encouragement. If your child is the victim of cyberbullying remind them that this is not their fault and that no one deserves to be treated in this way. Some young people think that if they are the target of online bullying that they must have done something wrong.
- Involve them. If your child is the victim of online bullying ask them what they would like you to do next. This might involve speaking to school to get support and advice.
- Don’t deny access to technology. Although it can be very tempting to remove a device from a young person if they are being bullied, having their device taken away may prevent them from speaking to you about worrying issues in the future.
- Support your child to use the tools available. (Report, Block and take a Screen Shot) A person or profile can be reported online as well as content such as a post, video or comment. This will then be flagged to the service who will review it against their terms and conditions. Have a look on our ‘How to make a report’ page for further guidance.
- Remind them to respond appropriately. Most of the time a bully is looking for a reaction and it can be tempting to retaliate with anger. Remind your child to think carefully about their own actions. They might choose to ask the bully to stop or not reply at all.
- Don’t judge. Reassure your child that even if they are also at fault, they have done the right thing in speaking to you. Work at resolving the situation together.
Conversation starter ideas:
A simple and effective way to support your child with cyberbullying is by having a discussion. Some of the following conversation starters may be useful:
- Is everything okay online? You know I’m here if you want to talk about anything.
- How are you? Has your social media made you feel more positive or negative over the past few weeks?
- How do you know when something is just a joke or banter online or when it’s cyberbullying?
- What is the biggest challenge for young people your age online today?
- Do you think there is a difference between how people respect each other offline and online? If so, in what way?