Cyber Bullying Essay

Words: 2855
Pages: 12

Cyber Bullying a Growing problem.
I am writing this essay as I have been extremely moved by the recent suicide of a teenage girl in Ireland. Erin Gallagher a 13 year old girl from Donegal took her own life because of vicious online bullying. Her recent suicide adds to the growing number of teenage suicides not just in Ireland but worldwide that have been caused by bullying and cyber bullying or a combination of both. The issue of cyber bullying is something that needs to be addressed immediately both in the home and in schools. UNICEF carried out a study on bullying in Ireland and the results were staggering to say the least. 55% of children questioned admitted to being bullied in one form or another (Changing the Future, 2010). This
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But in fact these phones are giving bullies with opportunities to attack and capture children in vulnerable situations for exploitation. Examples of this are of a straight American boy who was harassed by text messages implying he was gay and of a Canadian girl who had returned from holidays to rumours spread by text messages stating that she had contacted SARS. These comments may seem silly to somebody who is mature but they can be devastating to the young people on the receiving end (Wendland cited in Martin 2005). The Australia Government (2004) released a document identifying what signs to look out for if you think your child is being cyber bullied. Are they spending a lot of time online, having trouble sleeping or having nightmares, feeling depressed or crying without reason, mood swings, feeling unwell, becoming anti-social and falling behind in homework. Recognising these signs is the first step in preventing cyber bullying.

From Prevention to Education:
It is important as a parent or teacher or even a friend or family member that you are able to spot the signs of bullying and cyber bullying so that I can be dealt with and even prevented. A difficulty when preventing bullying is that some schools deny that it even occurs within their halls (Besag cited in Campbell 2005). Additional myths about bullying are that it is something that occurs