Have you talked to your kids about bullying? What about cyberbullying? In today’s expanding digital world, it’s difficult to not talk about one without the other.
These are not easy conversations to have with our kids at any age – I know. I’ve bumbled my way through more than my fair share of these with both of my daughters. I typically find they arise at the most inconvenient times…such as when I’m driving and we’re in bumper to bumper traffic or when I’m cooking dinner and distracted by an elaborate recipe. Or, when we’re running late for something. Many times, to be honest, one of my kids brings up the tough topic based on something they’ve heard at school or read about. But, sometimes my husband and I decide – “it’s just time”.
Here’s my road map for making these conversations easier – for all tough topics, including cyberbullying:
1. Try and find a good time for the conversation. As you just found out, that’s not always possible – but ideally, it would be an unrushed, quiet family time.
2. Think ahead of time what you want to say and why.
3. Keep it brief.
4. Don’t expect a full blown conversation. Some kids will jump in and talk to you about the topic but others may be more passive. There isn’t one way to respond. Go with your kids’ reaction and take it as normal. Many kids need time to process intense information and will come to you later on as they digest it a bit.
For all tough topics like cyberbullying, having up to date facts will go a long way in your success in getting the right points across to your kids.
For cyberbullying, I found a great infograhic that summarizes all the key facts to have on hand to frame your con
In addition, here’s the Cyberbullying Chapter of CyberSafe to give you more up to date information on Cyberbullying and why it’s such an important topic to talk to your kids about.