Cyberbullying on Social Media Leads to Depression

Oct 19, 2015

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Most parents are aware (or should be) that cyberbullying is happening and that it is a problem. But there are still the questions of where is it happening and how is it affecting your teen?

Where is your teen being cyber bullied?

41% of teens are active on multiple social media sites such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat, and many more. However, Facebook is the most popular social network among teens. Facebook is also the most common platform for teens to experience cyberbullying.

Due to anonymity, teens have admitted to feeling bolder and more empowered when communicating via Facebook and other social sites.  Though, teens are not always cyberbullied by strangers; friends may share inappropriate or embarrassing pictures without permission.  Actions like these can and have spiraled out of control, causing lasting damage to the victims.

How is your teen affected?

Bullying can be as bad or worse than child abuse. From recent studies, researchers have found that cyberbullying is the precedent to teen depression. They have found that the more cyberbullying a teen experiences, the more severe the symptoms of depression.

Worse than being cyberbullied and suffering from depression, is suffering alone.  Most teens will suffer in silence and not talk with any adults about their online experiences.  Your child may not be sharing these experiences with you because they are afraid of losing Internet access or their devices.

What can parents do?

As a parent, it is tempting to get rid of the problem altogether by taking away Internet access. However, doing so will shut off communication between you and your teen. Instead, teach safe social media use. Teach your teen to keep their passwords secure as well as not to over share personal information.

Parents need to stay up-to-date on the latest issues and trends among teens. Net Nanny has a learning center with multiple tips and resources for keeping your teen safe online. Check out the blog for more online safety articles.

**The information used in this article is from Livescience.com