No one should have to put up with bullying, whether it’s online or in “the real world.” But it sadly happens far too frequently and it can be especially devastating for teens.
As a parent, you need to keep an eye out for any potential signs of cyberbullying so you can then intervene and help.
Here are five warning signs you should know.
Can You Bring a Legal Claim Against a Cyberbully or Social Media Platform?
It’s not just security threats that threaten online users. It’s also cyberbullies.
Before we explore the warning signs that your teen is being cyberbullied, it’s worth mentioning that you may be able to bring a legal claim against someone who is cyberbullying your teenager. You may even be able to bring a claim against the social media platform.
Don’t underestimate just how damaging cyberbullying can be. It can cause depression, anxiety, self-harm, and even suicide.
Therefore, it’s important that those who misuse social media accounts are brought to account.
As cyberbullying is a fairly recent thing, the law is continually evolving with regard to cyberbullies.
So, you should consult an experienced lawyer to see if you have a strong case regarding an injury claim due to social media platforms or individual cyberbullies.
- Nervousness When Online
If you notice that your son or daughter has become nervous or jumpy when using his or her laptop, phone, or another device, it could be a sign of cyberbullying.
It’s a good idea to keep devices in communal areas, so you can keep a watchful eye.
- Unwillingness to Talk About Online Activity
While lots of teens don’t want mum and dad prying into their affairs, if your kid is unwilling to talk about which social media sites he or she uses and any other online activity, it could be a red flag that something’s wrong.
Many victims of cyberbullying hide their problems because they’re afraid of speaking out.
So, if your teen is unwilling to talk about online activity and seems unhappy, make sure you reach out.
- Depression, Anxiety, or Social Withdrawal
If your teenager suddenly becomes anti-social or seems depressed or anxious, it could be a telltale sign of a problem like cyberbullying.
Make sure your child knows that you’re there and that he or she can talk to you about anything.
It can also be helpful to take a family day out to lighten your teen’s mood and show him or her that you care and can be supportive. Forget Teleparty. Instead, hit the city or the great outdoors for some family bonding time.
- Nervousness About Leaving the House
If your child seems uneasy, nervous, or even scared about going outside, it’s a major warning sign that something’s wrong. And that problem could be cyberbullying.
If your child is uncomfortable in a school environment or around his or her school friends, or if your teen asks if he or she can skip days and stay at home, it’s a further sign that something’s wrong.
So, make sure you talk to your child about the problem and listen carefully.
- Physical Health Problems
Cyberbullying cannot only affect children’s mental health. It can also impact their physical health.
If your teen unexplainably loses or gains weight, has trouble eating, has problems sleeping, or suffers from new headaches or stomach aches, it could be a sign that your kid is being bullied.
If the symptoms persist, you should take your teen to see a doctor, in addition to talking things through with your child.
Also, if your teenager is showing signs of either mental or physical health problems, it could be helpful for him or her to attend counseling or therapy sessions to get back on track.