For many kids, back to school can be an exciting time — seeing old friends, breaking in new notebooks, and getting back into the swing of things. But for some kids, it can also be stressful to return to seeing their bullies at school and interacting more frequently with their classmates online. That can be particularly true for LGBTQ+ youth – the majority of whom are likely to experience some sort of bullying, including cyberbullying.
Experts at StopBullying.gov have some advice for people who want to know how to spot and deal with cyberbullying:
- Take notice of any changes in a child’s mood or behavior and explore whether these changes are related to their online interactions.
- Talk about what’s happening and ask questions. Ask questions to learn what is happening, how it started, and who is involved.
- Keep records. Take screenshots of harmful posts or content if possible. This can help document what’s happening.
- Report it to the social media platform, school, or law enforcement. Most social media platforms have clear policies and processes for reporting and removing offensive content. If a classmate is involved, report it the school. If a child is physically threatened, or you suspect criminal behavior, report it to local law enforcement.
- Offer support and positive intervention. This includes posting positive comments about the person being bullied, shifting the conversation in a positive direction, or reaching out to express your concern. If you think professional support is needed, speak with a guidance counselor or mental health professional.
If your LGBTQ+ child is being bullied online or in real life, connect them with a counselor at an LGBTQ+ organization to talk about what happened. Reach out to The Trevor Project free counselors, available 24/7, by phone, chat, and text.
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Thank you for raising awareness of this. My daughter was bullied in college. I wanted to throw her phone out, to get away from those messages. I pray for peace and strength for all students, esp. LGBTQIA+.
LGBTQ -THEY ARE ONE OF US -THEY CAME INTHE WORLD THE SAME WE WE DID/DO-THEIR BLOOD IS RED SAME AS OURS. THERE SHOULD BE NO DIFFERENCE OF HOW WE TREAT THEM-THEY MUST BE TREATED AS WE TREAT OUR KIDS -BROTHERS & SISTERS.
I am a retired school administrator and feel strongly that Boards of Education, School Administrators and Teachers all need to focus on stopping bulling of all kinds. If they look the other way they are a disgrace to their profession and should be held to account. Check out the provisions in your school district to deal with bullying and then check with the state codes in your state.
This should be for anyone being mistreated by another. Neighborhoods have bullies and decide who can live in the neighborhoods and damage reputations via lies and using other people to join in on harassing and violating people they don't like.. Bullies enjoy the fact that others feel the need to do their bidding.. should have major consequences.