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Part 1 of 2: Protect Your Children from Cyberbullying (Internet Bullying)

Part 1 of 2: Protect Your Children From Cyberbullying (Internet Bullying)

Here is an article from Israel Kahlman; he wants the word to get out to as many folks as possible. I personally had the opportunity to spend the day training under Izzy, and feel that he knows of what he speaks. As a bonus, he has a big heart for young people. As you will notice, it is written for young people. Show it to your children; it might save them a world of trouble.

I’m printing it here in two parts. I’m not sure Izzy’s links will show up as I cut-and-paste, but I do encourage you to visit his website at http://www.Bullies2Buddies.com.

James Sutton, Psychologist

……………………………………………

In recent years, kids have found another way to pick on each other: the Internet. This is being called “cyberbullying”.

It is natural to get upset when other kids write terrible things about you, either to you or about you, in emails, IMs (Instant Messages) and websites or blogs. Your parents may also get upset if they discover you are a victim of cyberbullying. Parents often want the school to handle the problem. Sometimes parents even get the police or the FBI involved.

There is a good chance that if you are being bullied over the Internet, it is also happening to you in school. Kids torment you during school hours and continue to do it at home over the computer. If so, it is a good idea to read the free online manual, How to Stop Being Teased and Bullied Without Really Trying at http://www.Bullies2Buddies.com, or the book, Bullies to Buddies: How to turn your enemies into friends.

It is really not hard to handle cyberbullying by yourself if you wish. All you need is change your attitude. Use the following rules, and it shouldn’t be a problem.

1. Life is not Heaven. It would be really fantastic if you could live a life in which everyone is always nice to you. Unfortunately, no one is so lucky. You may have heard of a place in which everyone is always nice to each other. It is called Heaven, and you first have to die to get in. But as long as you are alive, you are going to have to deal with people being mean. In fact, there is a good chance that the people who are meanest to you are your own family members! And a very easy place for people to be mean to you is the Internet. So, the sooner you learn how to deal with people being mean to you, the better the rest of your life will be.

2. There is an old saying, “If you play with fire, you can get burned.” Most things in life have both good sides and bad sides. It is fun to play with fire, but it stops being fun if you get burned. So, if you are not willing to risk getting burned, you shouldn’t play with fire. Basketball is fun, but you can fall, scrape your knees, and even break your bones. The great thing about the Internet is that it has made communication possible like never before in the history of the world. The bad side is that it is easier to spread nasty things about people than ever before. If you are not willing to face the possibility that kids will use the Internet against you, you shouldn’t get on it. Of course kids can spread nasty things about you even if you never get on the Internet, but it is much more likely to happen if you do use it. So remember – if you insist on using the Internet, be prepared that kids will use it against you, and don’t get upset when it happens.

3. The real fun of spreading nasty things about you is to see you getting upset. If you respond by writing angry emails, the kids who wrote them will have a great time and want to do it even more. However, if it doesn’t bother you, then the kids will not have as much fun and are more likely to leave you alone.

4. Dealing with cyberbullying is similar to dealing with rumors. The “Magic Response” to rumors is, “Do you believe it?” (See the chapter on rumors in How to Stop Being Teased and Bullied Without Really Trying.)

You can’t stop people from believing what they want to believe. People know that not everything that is written in emails and IMs are true. Don’t you recognize nonsense when you read it? Well, so do other kids. So you don’t have to worry that they will believe the nasty things written about you. However, if you try to convince them not to believe the stuff that’s going around about you, you look foolish and automatically lose. And you can be sure the nastiness will continue.

The solution is to give people “Freedom of Speech”. Take the attitude: “Kids can say or write whatever they want about me and it’s perfectly okay.” If kids tell you about the mean things they read about you, ask them, “Do you believe it.” If they say, “No”, you can answer “Good”, and you win. If they say, “Yes,” answer “You can believe it if you want,” and you also win. The kids will admire you for not letting anything bother you. It will be no fun to pick on you so they will eventually leave you alone. [Note for adults: If you object that Freedom of Speech does not cover slander and libel, read #8.]

…………………………(to be continued)……………………..

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August 17, 2006 - Posted by | Educators, Parents

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