Being online can be a really positive experience as you can connect with friends, watch enjoyable clips and much more. However, it does have dangers and it is important to stay safe online.
Social Media and Cyberbullying
It’s likely that between these ages, your child will join one or more social media platforms and will have their own mobile device. Whilst a lot of good comes from having this technology, sadly, they also open up the possibility of cyberbullying. Cyberbullying includes sending, posting, or sharing negative, harmful, false, or mean content about someone else. It can include sharing personal or private information about someone else causing embarrassment or humiliation.
Things to look out for:
- Noticeable increases or decreases in device use, including texting.
- A child exhibits emotional responses (laughter, anger, upset) to what is happening on their device.
- A child hides their screen or device when others are near, and avoids discussion about what they are doing on their device.
- Social media accounts are shut down or new ones appear.
- A child starts to avoid social situations, even those that were enjoyed in the past.
- A child displays new behaviours such as becomes withdrawn, depressed, has sudden uncharacteristic outbursts of anger or loses interest in people and activities.
The organisations below can offer support and advice on dealing with cyberbullying.