Is Your Teen A Victim Of A Cyberbully? Would You Know?

National Children’s Mental Health Awareness day right around the corner on May 7th, 2015.  Bullying and cyberbullying can cause long term emotional scars.  Many times teens will hide these bruises from their parents – pretending to be brave – as if it isn’t cool to be sad or depressed.

Bullying has changed from the days of taking someone’s lunch money or giving them a swirly in the bathroom. Now, children are much more likely to engage in cyberbullying, or the use of electronic communication to bully a person. In fact, 20-30% of today’s children will be cyberbullied, and 10-20% of students will be cyberbullies.

However, it can be tricky for a parent to figure out if their child is experiencing cyberbullying; more than half of the children who experience cyberbullying do not tell their parents about it. And while around 55% of teens report having observed bullying behavior online, 95% report ignoring the behavior when it was observed.

There are a few tell-tale signs that can give clues that your child might be engaged in cyberbullying. For example long periods and odd hours of internet use, or changes in a child’s patterns of internet use, can signify cyberbullying. A child engaging in cyberbullying behavior might also become upset if their internet usage is confronted or cut off by their parents. Children with excessive social media accounts may be using them to follow and harass others.

Is Your Child A Cyberbully: Facts About Cyberbullying

Attribution – YellowBrick Program

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Grownup Bullying: When Adults Act Badly

The 2014 Workplace Bullying Institute survey (PDF) was released.

37 million workers reported being subjected to “abusive conduct” and 65.5 million are affected by this behavior. Whether it was those abused or people that witnessed it, peer cruelty is happening in workplaces across our country.

We often discuss children when it comes to bullying and cyberbullying. Sadly adult bullying topics are rarely in the headlines.

This is not to diminish the fact that our youth are important, the fact they are killing themselves over words of hatred and learning to treat each other with such cruelty is despicable.

We have to take a moment to realize, does it start at the top?

Parents, teachers, coaches and all grownups, especially those in the workplace should be people that our children respect.

The recent PSA released by VH1 is a reminder that the very people may be making fun of today could end up being your bosses for later. Like with many ad-campaigns, it can be extreme. Sadly the fact that many kids are tormented and harassed is true.

Is the PSA tasteful? There are many opinions. The message is there, and that is what needs to be heard.

No one is immune to bullying. At any age it is not right. Kindness will always take you so much further in life.

Erase Hate: Promote Kindness

#iCANHELP Campaign continues to spread nationwide with their message that kindness can defeat negativity.

A few negative posts can leave you feeling alone and isolated. However, all it takes is one person noticing something good and complimenting our day to erase all of the negativity that is following us around.

Simple acts of kindness happen everyday and they can make the world of difference in a person’s life.

#iCANHELP Campaign is about deleting negativity on social media but it is also about being a positive warrior in life.  Everything they do is about kindness and compassion towards others.

There many campaigns that I have written about all have positive messages that help promote civility to all online and off.

Check out their latest video – ERASE HATE and take the time to promote kindness in someone that needs to hear it today!

Join them on Facebook and follow them on Twitter.

Remember, don’t change who you are or what you stand for just because you are online!

The Bully Text Extended!

BullyTextDoSomething.org and The Wireless Foundation extend availability of “Bully Text” after over 128,000 young people play the game

Whether the victim of bystander, “Bully Text” educational mobile game empowers young people with strategies on how to stop bullying

DoSomething.org and The Wireless Foundation announce the extension of ‘Bully Text’, a virtual text-based educational game where users choose how to respond to bullies, whether the victim or a bystander, in typical situations at an imaginary high school.

In only three months, more than 128,000 young people learned how to best respond to bullying by participating in “Bully Text.”  With an estimated 160,000 kids skipping school each day to avoid being bullied, DoSomething.org developed ‘Bully Text’ to educate students on how to stop bullying in their schools.

‘Bully Text’ offers a “choose your own adventure” where participants virtually experience different bullying situations and are offered options on how to react. Depending on the users’ responses, the results show them the impacts of their reactions in a safe learning environment.

DoSomething.org found a natural partner in The Wireless Foundation and their mission: bringing organizations, people, and technology together so wireless innovations will continue to enhances lives in communities across the United States.

The campaign is part of DoSomething.org’s proprietary mobile gaming model – through which they built their mobile subscriber list to over 1.3 million young people. With the average teen sending 3,339 texts a month and texts having a 99% open rate; SMS is a powerful tool to effectively engage young people on issues they care about.

“The best way to stop bullying is to step in when you see it,” says Nancy Lublin, CEO and Chief Old Person of DoSomething.org.  ”The Bully Text is like a vitamin in a Twinkie: young people learn how to stop bullying under the guise of playing a game on their phone.”

“Bullying is an issue that many children may face, and the ‘Bully Text’ is a safe way for kids to determine the best response if they find themselves – or are a bystander – in that kind of situation. Our partnership with DoSomething.org on this important initiative engages teens via mobile, their favorite form of communicating, to help them learn how to best handle bullying,” said Steve Largent, President of The Wireless Foundation and President and CEO of CTIA-The Wireless Association.

Thanks to success of the ‘Bully Text’ campaign, DoSomething.org and The Wireless Foundation will continue to offer the game until January 27, 2014. To find out more about the campaign, visit: http://www.dosomething.org/bullytext or text BULLY to 38383.

About DoSomething.org:

We love teens. They are creative, active, wired…and frustrated that our world is so messed up. DoSomething.org harnesses that awesome energy and unleashes it on causes teens care about. Almost every week, we launch a new national campaign. The call to action is always something that has a real impact and doesn’t require money, an adult, or a car. With a goal of 5 million active members by 2015, DoSomething.org is one of the largest organizations in the US for teens and social change. Join us at www.DoSomething.org.

Take A Stand Against Bullying

It is National Bullying Prevention Month.  uWillstand is bring the world together to make a difference!  Pin your location!

The music video for Stand the Anthem united youth across 17 states & 6 countries. Performed by Charleigh and Justin Gere “Standhttp://www.willustand.com Help us share the message of Stand with schools all across the nation and worldwide during October’s National Bullying Prevention Month. Use hashtags #willUstand and #StandtheAnthem, please share generously.

The Bully Text: National Bullying Prevention Month

BullyText2013_Assets_facebook_cover‘The Bully Text’ utilizes SMS to educate young people on how to step up to bullying in their community

DoSomething.org and The Wireless Foundation announce the launch of The Bully Text, a unique mobile experience that allows young people to walk through a day at a virtual high school to explore the ways that they can step up to bullies in common bullying situations. With an estimated 160,000 kids skipping school each day to avoid being bullied[1],  DoSomething.org developed The Bully Text to educate students on how to stop bullying in their schools.

The Bully Text is a text messaging game set during an imaginary first day of school. In the game, participants experience different bullying situations and are given options on how they can react. Depending on how the participant reacts in the different situations, they walk down different paths that each offer unique endings. The SMS education experience is meant to emulate common bullying situations, show different ways to react and offer an example of the impact of their actions.

For the second year of The Bully Text, DoSomething.org found a natural partner in The Wireless Foundation and their mission: bringing organizations, people, and technology together so wireless innovations will continue to enhances lives in communities across the United States.  Last year over 68,000 young people took part in the campaign, and 89% of participants reported having a better idea of how to stop bullying in their school after playing the game. This year, young people who participate will be entered to win a $3,000 scholarship.

The Bully Text is part of DoSomething.org’s proprietary mobile gaming model – through which they built their mobile subscriber list to over 1.3 young people. With the average teen sending 3,339 texts a month and texts having a 99% open rate; SMS is a powerful tool to effectively engage young people on issues they care about.

“We all remember that moment, that feeling. You see something you don’t quite agree with in school, something you know is wrong. But do you act? It’s hard for young people to know how to deal with those situations first hand” said Greg Thomas, campaign manager at DoSomething.org. “Through The Bully Text, we’re providing young people with a chance to understand what it’s like to experience bullying through different roles, and reflect on how they can change their behavior to help them step up to bullying in their school.”

For full campaign details, visit www.dosomething.org/bullytext or text BULLY to 38383.

[1] National Association of School Psychologists (http://www.nasponline.org/)

Bullying Under Attack: True Stories Written by Teen Victims, Bullies & Bystanders

WORDS ARE POWERFUL- they can inflict damage and they can heal.  In this anthology of first-person accounts written by teenagers for both their peers and adults, words transform pain into hope and the possibility for change.

Order today!

Order today!

Bullying Under Attack is an eye-opening anthology of all three players in the bullying cycle. These conversational essays on life as the bullied, the bully, and the bystander provide insight and inspiration for change. Rather than offer a cumbersome psychological breakdown, this graceful and hard-hitting book places the reader firmly in the shoes of all involved.

The stories written by The Bullied explain the subtleties and agony of harassment, helping readers understand that there is more to unkind words and behavior than “just joking around.” Although many of these teens have suffered through harassment by their peers, their essays are both empowering and inspiring. By exploring the essays by The Bullies, readers will discover that the bullies are often times incorrectly labled as bad kids, but many are simply trying to fit in, despite their own insecurities and fears. While these bullies may still have their own seemingly insurmountable obstacles at home, they share their experiences and insights hoping to manage and reforming other bullies. The section voiced by The Bystander shares tales of those who have regrettably watched and those who have stepped up to help others. Here, readers will find the inspiration to speak out rather than just standing by while others are emotionally harmed.

Whether due to race, weight, or jealousy, there are a myriad of reasons WHY. Included in this startling compendium of personal stories that convey the complexity and nuances of what it means to be bullied, are stories of regret, promises, and encouragement that will help readers find solace during their teen years and show them how—as adults—their words and actions can provide strength and reassurance to others experiencing all aspects of bullying. Ultimately, they will learn to find their voices in order to break the cycle for good.

Order today on Amazon!