Cyberbullying: Growing Up is a Hard Thing to Do

Growing up is a hard thing to do.

Being made fun of, belittled, an attack on the self esteem is an unfortunately normal occurrence during adolescence.  However, parents, your children are growing up in a different world than you did.  The world’s growing interconnectedness has increased the possible exposure kids face to being bullied.  There was once a day when even if you were especially picked on as a child, you could go home and escape these childhood horrors.  Home was a place protected, safe, a haven from the real world where you could be a child again.  That day is gone.  Roughly 75% percent of all Americans are connected to the Internet, a window into your home.  While this access creates unprecendented opportunity for learning, exploration, and discovery, it also exponentially increases the risk of threats, violence, and attack for young people.   Children as young as 11 have experienced being bullied online, having images or text designed to hurt displayed.  And the Internet being what it is, anyone can see these images or text, and once said, unlike the verbal insults of days gone by, once posted, they remain indefinitely.

Studies indicate that as many as 20% of students between ages 11 and 18 have been victimized through technological devices at some point in the last year.

As a society, we cannot afford to allow this to continue.  We were all once children, and remember that pain associated with not being ‘part of the group.’  And yet we have allowed the pain to grow, increasing its likelihood, now virally, and reaching our young people while even at home.

Southern Oregon Students Against Cyberbullying is here to develop awareness of this growing issue dividing and alienating our young people, and create an interconnected platform to access research, forums, and community outreach designed to deter cyberbullying.

Please feel free to follow our posted links and comments, and if you have something to say or another place for victims, parents, and educators, post it on our site.

Together we can end this pervasive problem.

www.cyberbullying.us

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