Quick Guide: How to Spot a Victim of Cyberbullying

  • 1 in 6 parents know their child has been bullied via a social networking site.
    (American Osteopathic Association, 2011)
  • Only 7% of U.S. parents are worried about cyberbullying, even though 33% of teenagers have been victims of cyberbullying.
    (PEW Internet and American Life Survey, 2011)
  • Only 7% of U.S. parents are worried about cyberbullying, even though 33% of teenagers have been victims of cyberbullying.
    (PEW Internet and American Life Survey, 2011)At Project B3, we wish there was a “How To” guide when it came to parenting this generation of digital natives. But, this is new territory and we are all learning as we go. Thankfully, there are many sites and sources educators and parents can pull valuable information from. But, with so many ranges of topics in the digital world, it can be hard to keep up. We recently posted about current statistics on cyberbullying in 2020. Stats and numbers are so helpful to know what is going on in the digital world of preteens and teens, but it only gives us so much to work with. As a follow-up, we wanted to give you a quick guide that may help you in your real life, not just a broader sense of what is happening in the world.

    According to the National Crime Prevention Center (NCPC), there are several behavioral changes that someone being cyberbullies may undergo. Though a teen may be being bullied, they may not know that help is available or may feel too embarrassed to speak up. With the amount of time young people are spending on the Internet or on their phones, it is important to be able to  Spot the Signs of Cyberbullying:

  • Becomes withdrawn or shy
  • Shows signs of depression
  • Is extremely moody or agitated
  • Is anxious or overly stressed out
  • Shows signs of aggressive behavior
  • Suddenly stops using the computer
  • Changes eating or sleeping habits (e.g., nightmares)
  • No longer wants to participate in activities once enjoyed
  • Hurts self, attempts or threatens suicide
  • Suddenly changes friends
  • Becomes withdrawn or shy
  • Shows signs of depression
  • Is extremely moody or agitated
  • Is anxious or overly stressed out
  • Shows signs of aggressive behavior
  • Doesn’t want to go to school
  • Gets into trouble at school
  • Skips school
  • Loses interest in school
  • Drops in grades

***The biggest red flag is a withdrawal from technology. If you notice a sudden change in computer or phone usage, talk to the child. They may be being cyberbullied.

Project B3 is always a huge advocate of communication. We know all family dynamics are different and some are difficult to navigate. If your preteen or teen isn’t open to talking to you or other trusted adults, these tips on how to look for outward signs of cyberbullying are a great starting point.

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