By Renee Ruffin-Price
For AL DIA TODAY
Because I am around preteens and teens and they frequently want to have access to certain social medias, I realized I needed to become more acclimated to the current cyberbullying and social media terms. As I often do, I visited the Cyberbullying Research Center’s website (cyberbullying.org) and found just what I needed. One of their Parent Resources was a document called Social Media, Cyberbullying, & Online Safety Glossary. I learned more about an online game that I recently heard about called “About Us”. I also read about the difference between Unfriending versus Blocking someone online. Other key topics relevant to our current times include: What To Do When Your Child Cyberbullies Others: Top Ten Tips for Parents, What To Do When Your Child is Cyberbullied: Top Ten Tips for Parents, Questions Parents Should Ask Their Children About Technology and TikTok: Top Ten Tips for Teens.
Of course one must be mindful of the timing, location, and appropriate approach when using these questions so that your child is receptive to being in a “casual discussion” versus feeling judged. Reviewing the Safety Glossary before having this discussion might give your preteen or teen a sense that you are already knowledgeable about technology and social media in general, and that you are just wanting to know about their experiences. To break the ice, consider using the document called Cyberbullying Crossword Puzzle: Talking to Youth about Internet Harassment as a joint activity. Preparing yourself with the researched information contained in these documents should help your discussions go smoother than if you just jumped right in!
Article submitted on February 27, 2022, by Renee’ Ruffin-Price, Community Advocate for Children, for the March 2022 issue of Al Dia Today