New research from Michigan State University suggests children who were cyberbullied on their cell phones were more likely to skip school.
Victims may even have suicidal thoughts, just like children who were physically attacked by bullies.
Cyberbullying Can be Life Threatening
For instance, 22 percent of the student participants in the study who had been physically bullied considered suicide, in comparison to the 28 percent who were cyberbullied.
In addition, 26 percent of the students who were bullied on their cell phones had thoughts of suicide, as well.
The study also indicates that younger students and girls were more likely to think about suicide.
It’s important that we be aware of the warning signs that signal whether a child is a victim of bullying. They consist of the following:
- Mood changes
- Poor school performance
- Lack of appetite
- Social withdrawal
Being Aware is the First Step
We should also be aware of children’s online activity. Professionals suggest we use filtering software to help reduce the possibility of a child becoming a target for bullies on the Internet. Monitoring our children’s cell phone use is also added advice.
Finally, parents, caregivers, and school officials should also educate children on the risk of bully victimization via mobile phones and encourage the child to speak to one or both parents, caregiver, or school officials about his or her negative experience.
Combating any type of bullying takes added knowledge, understanding, care, and effort. Know the warning signs and pay close attention to our children’s activities.
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