Bullying is nothing new. Unfortunately, there have always been bullies, and unless human nature takes a new turn anytime soon (unlikely), we will always have to deal with them. Among adults, outright bullying may seem rare or takes on different forms, but with teens it’s a different story. Young people are capable of extreme bullying at times, and sometimes it leads to disastrous circumstances.
It seems hardly a week goes by without news of some tragic suicide or a child’s life being simply destroyed by bullying at school, or elsewhere.
And social media seems to only exacerbate the problem. Kids spend a lot of time on their smartphones these days - their social lives are intricately intertwined with their online activity. Many of the most extreme and shocking recent cases of children being victimized by bullying have occurred primarily online, where many people are able to witness and sometimes participate. Children can sometimes be almost unbelievably cruel to one another and social networks can make things even worse.
Rumors and various types of content can spread fast and far on the internet. The sharing of embarrassing photos or videos, secrets or falsehoods can turn a child’s life into a nightmare. Even if the bully doesn’t intend to do any real damage, a thoughtless joke can send a kid into a spiral of depression and despair.
Strategies for Protecting Your Child from Bullying
There’s no substitute for good communication with your child. Encouraging them to share their daily lives and problems with you, while showing you trust and care for them is the best way to protect them and to help them in dealing with the social lives and the problems that may arise.
But sometimes it’s not easy to get a teen to open up about the things that may be bothering them. Kids have a tendency to avoid discussing these situations, often partly because they are embarrassed or afraid of opening up about matters which may be painfully sensitive to talk about with their parents.
Many concerned parents feel that it’s necessary to take measures to protect their children, not only from bullying, but also from many other potential threats online. A spy phone app (such as the one sold by Highster Mobile) installed on a child’s smartphone or tablet is a very effective and practical way to monitor a child’s online activities as well as their whereabouts.
It’s up to the parent to let the child know that there is mobile monitoring installed. Depending on the individual situation, a parent may not want a teen to be aware they are being monitored. But either way, mobile monitoring software is the only real means a parent has of keeping a close watch on a child’s online world.