Cyberbullying Facts: Why Do Girls Get the Most of It?
A bullying issue has always been a problem for many kids starting from primary school and finishing with high school. But with increased usage of the Internet over the years, more and more kids are falling the victims for cyberbullying.
About 81% of kids believe cyberbullying is much easier and ‘safer’ to get away with as only 1 in 10 victims would tell their parents about the incident, while 90% of teens ignore bullying when they come across any case of it on social media. Recent studies show that 25.8% of girls are being bullied online – compared to 16.8% of boys. Girls are also the leaders in the percent of bullies. What are the reasons for girls to be deeply involved in the bullying issue? What are the intimidating suicide bullying facts and what can you do as a parent?
Why girls are bullied more?
There are several reasons for girls being more involved in cyber bullying, both as the victim and the aggressor. The most obvious one would be the manner in which girls interact with peers. Boys tend to be more aggressive and straightforward in their threats – just think about the typical school rowdy beating some middle school kids while being surrounded by his friends cheering him up, and you will get the idea.
Girls, on the other hand, are more subtle in their bullying style. Being hostile to everyone who is different from them, and going through teenage diffidence, they take advantage of the anonymity of the Internet and social media. Hiding behind fake accounts and screen name that is hard to track, girls often spread rumors about victims and bombard them with hateful messages. In case the victim was a part of some kind of a group chat, excluding her and indirectly ostracizing is another form of bullying.
Because of the subtle nature of the cyberbullying and victim’s unwillingness to share the problem with parents, it all leads to alarming cyberbullying suicide statistics.
Cyberbullying and teen suicide – sad statistics
Yes, girls bullying is more subtle, but it is not less harmful. With physical bullying you can at least hide at home. Cyberbullying is always there as teen uses smartphone all the time. And it is permanent – once something is on the Internet, it will always be there. And this is too overwhelming for most teens.
Bullying victims are suffering from trust issues, anxiety, low self-esteem and fear. These complex emotions should be properly dealt with. When it comes to teenage suicide, cyberbullying is one of the reasons and causes of it.
Among the numerous examples of suicides over cyberbullying are Hope Sitwell (13 y.o) and Jessica Logan (18 y.o), who hang themselves after their nude pics sent to boyfriends were shared among students of several schools in their home towns. Hope had never told her parents about the hateful MySpace page where her peers kept on writing dirty things about her. Bullying and suicide facts include victims and deaths among people of different age and gender, so we are talking about the global problem. What can you do to prevent the tragedy and how to help your child?
Preventing suicides related to cyberbullying: how to talk to your children?
As always, the main thing you should go for is trust and open talk with your child. Most of the time bullying victims are intimidated and scared they will disappoint you if they speak about it.
Be sure to notice and react to mood changes of your child. If she is already bullied, there should be a friendly shoulder – become one. Studies show that a great percentage of girls who have experienced cyberbullying were able to dismiss the bullies.
The most powerful coping strategy is explaining your daughter the reasons why people are bullying each other, and teaching her they are not worth the time and effort to be stressed about. Make her feel powerful and worthy – this will eliminate the intimidation and diffidence she is feeling.