Protect your kids from cyberbullying
Fri, 25 Jul 2014 23:57:41 GMT —
In the age of the internet, parents desperately try to protect their kids from cyberbullying.
Your child might be in danger of becoming a target if you can't detect the signs.
Cyberbullying - It's a 13 letter word but its impact can be devastating.
With each tweet, text or online message, your children could become a victim of cyberbullying.
"Cyberbullying certainly occurs with those repeated text messages," Meier said.
Tina Meier's life forever changed when her daughter became a victim of cyberbullying.
"This issue is really important to me because my daughter, Megan, took her own life. In October of 2006, after she was cyberbullied by an adult neighbor pretending to be a boy," Meier said.
Meier's loss caused her to start the Megan Meier Foundation in 2007. Currently, she serves as its executive director.
Its goal is to educate youth and parents about bullying and cyberbullying.
Meier says there are signs parents can look for to determine if their child is a victim.
"If they all of a sudden do not want to go to school. If they're kind of isolating themselves from friends and family," Meier said.
She believes a majority of the bullying occurs on social media apps.
"Certainly we see for middle schools students, it's still the Instagram. It is Facebook. It is certainly Twitter. It can be things such as Snapchat," Meier said.
"They're able to cut and paste pictures and put, you know sayings about people," Johnson said.
Chuck Johnson chairs the Mental Health Authority Education Committee.
He thinks social media gives bullies an ability to attack victims with the click of a button.
"Kids are having to deal not only with the person who bullied them, but now all of the comments of all the other children at school, Johnson said.
Meier hopes parents and teachers will notice the early signs of cyberbullying before it's too late.
"We can help one-by-one until hopefully, we can build enough empathy that people understand how to use the technology properly," Meier said.
According to the Megan Meier Foundation, one in five cyberbullied teens considers suicide.