By Rebecca Rocca
November is one of my favourite months; the run up to festive fun has begun. Just think sparklers, poppies, fireworks and of course the amusing, but charitable, ‘Movember’ movement. November is also the month that raises awareness about bullying with Anti-Bullying Month which was established to highlight the impact of bullying and how to combat it. For anyone who has experienced bullying, it can be an emotional rollercoaster and an upsetting time.
Statistics on bullying, collated from Government reports and research reveal that almost half (46 per cent) of children and young people say they have been bullied at school at some point in their lives. I’m lucky enough to say I was never bullied in school, however, I don’t know if I would have gotten away unscathed had there been Facebook or Twitter back then! You see the bully of the 21st Century looks very different to that of 20 years ago; for starters, more often than not, he is faceless, and nameless. No longer content with stealing children’s lunch money or homework, he’s now stealing something far more precious: their self esteem, ambitions and reputation. In fact, between 8 and 34 per cent of children and young people in the UK have admitted to being the victims of cyber bulling, with girls twice as likely to experience persistent cyber bullying than boys.
The truth of the matter is kids today have far more to deal with in terms of bullying than I (or we) ever did. So as adults I think we need to be extra vigilant when it comes to looking out for the young people we love. We need to monitor their moods and social media activity – let them accuse us of being nosey and interfering – we’re adults, that’s our job! Our job is to protect them, and in this day and age, that includes ensuring that they don’t fall victim of the cyber bully.