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bullying

How Teenage Girls Can Bullyproof Themselves

A Guide to Bully-Proofing Yourself

Life as a teenager can be a wild ride, and sometimes, we face challenges like bullying that can throw us off course. But fear not – you have the power to bully-proof yourself and emerge even stronger. Let’s explore some practical tips and tricks to help you navigate these waters with confidence and resilience.

Celebrate Your Uniqueness:
First things first, embrace what makes you, well, YOU! Your quirks, your interests, your passions – they’re what make you shine. Bullies often target what they perceive as weaknesses, but when you celebrate your uniqueness, you build an armor of self-love that’s impenetrable.

Speak Up and Own Your Voice:
Your voice is your superpower. Use it to speak up for yourself and others. Practice assertiveness by expressing your thoughts and feelings with “I” statements. When you own your voice, you not only set boundaries but also show the world that you won’t be silenced.

Define Your Boundaries:
Know where your comfort zone ends and your personal space begins. Setting boundaries is not about building walls; it’s about respecting yourself. Be clear about what you will and won’t tolerate, and don’t be afraid to communicate those boundaries confidently.

Surround Yourself with Positivity:
Your squad matters! Cultivate friendships with people who uplift and support you. A positive support system can be your anchor in stormy times. Surround yourself with friends who appreciate your strengths and help you shine even brighter.

Bounce Back with Resilience:
Life is full of twists and turns, and building resilience is your secret weapon. Instead of seeing challenges as roadblocks, view them as opportunities for growth. Learn from setbacks, stand tall, and bounce back stronger than ever.

Navigate the Digital World Wisely:
In the age of social media, being a digital guru is essential. Be mindful of your online presence, use privacy settings wisely, and remember that the digital world should be a tool for connection, not a source of stress. Choose positivity and authenticity in your online interactions.

Know Your Strengths:
Physical strength is just one aspect of self-defense. Knowing your inner strengths – resilience, courage, and intelligence – is equally important. Believe in your ability to handle challenging situations, and you’ll exude a confidence that repels negativity.

Report and Seek Support:
Remember, you’re not alone. If you witness or experience bullying, don’t hesitate to report it to a trusted adult. Seeking support is a sign of strength, not weakness. There are people who care about you and are ready to stand by your side.

Your teenage years is your time to shine, and nothing should dim your light. Embrace your uniqueness, speak up, set boundaries, surround yourself with positivity, bounce back with resilience, navigate the digital world wisely, know your strengths, and always, always seek support. You’re not just growing; you’re blossoming into a powerful force to be reckoned with. Unleash your power, and watch as the world becomes a brighter place because of you.

How to Combat Bullying on Social Media

At Evangelhouse, we help girls in grades 6-12 that have been the victim of cyberbullying. Bullying that occurs online, such as on computers, tablets, and mobile phones, is referred to as cyberbullying. Cyberbullying can happen online through social media, forums, or gaming where users can read, interact with, or exchange content. It can also happen through SMS, Text, and applications. Sending, posting, or disseminating unfavorable, hurtful, or malicious content about someone else is considered cyberbullying. It can also involve disclosing sensitive or private information about another individual in a way that causes embarrassment or humiliation. Cyberbullying occasionally veers into illegal or criminal action.

The following places are where cyberbullying is most frequent:

  • Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, and Tik Tok are examples of social media.
  • Message-sending software for tablets and mobile phones
  • Online chatting, direct messaging, and instant messaging all use the internet.
  • Online message boards, chat rooms, and forums like Reddit
  • Emailing online gaming forums

Effects/Signs of Cyberbullying

Abusers transmit harmful words when they can remain hidden behind a screen because they can avoid confrontations of being face-to-face. However, because cyberbullying can conceal itself behind a screen, it may be challenging for you to recognize when it is happening. The following are some typical red flags that your daughter is a victim of cyberbullying:

  • After utilizing their phone or the internet, your daughter experiences sadness, anger, or she gets upset.
  • Your daughter has withdrawn from friends or family
  • She has a reduction in grades without apparent cause or is reluctant to participate in routine activities or attend school.
  • She displays signs of depression

One of the most frequent causes of a teen girl withdrawing from activities or reluctance to attend school is bullying. Because it can be difficult to escape from and sometimes even follows you home from school, cyberbullying can be especially deadly. If your daughter is a victim of cyberbullying, it is crucial that this situation be handled appropriately and that they receive the assistance they require. Over time, victims of cyberbullying may have a range of psychological issues.

The majority of cyberbullying attacks happen on social networking sites. Social media platforms make it simple for cyberbullying assaults to spread to many others in addition to the target. Because of this, cyberbullying incidents may be more destructive, and social media may have a significant impact on the increased occurrence of cyberbullying among teenagers.

In fact, using social media excessively can cause a variety of mental health issues on its own. Social media was created as a tool for connecting people and for exchanging concepts, ideas, and knowledge across a virtual network. Ironically, though, using social media excessively can lead to feelings of loneliness and isolation. This occurs because we often only show the finest aspects of ourselves and our life on social media, making others feel unworthy.

How to Combat Online Bullying

It’s critical to get help if you think that your daughter may be a victim of cyberbullying. Here are some advice and strategies to support you or a loved one who is dealing with cyberbullying.

Make an effort to help: If your daughter is a victim of cyberbullying, it’s critical that they get the support they need to stop the behavior and lessen the likelihood that it may have negative impacts or cause problems with their mental health. As a parent, listening and providing support are two of the best things you can do.

Refrain from responding or retaliating: When one person bullies another, they frequently search for a response to give them a sense of power. Additionally, taking offense can start a domino effect of negative reactions that prolongs and worsens the cyberbullying attack.

Remember that cyberbullying is not the victim’s fault: Conflicts between two or more people can occasionally lead to disagreements. A person is not handling the disagreement effectively and is actually bullying you if they are being cruel to you on a regular basis, whether it be in person or online. Never put the responsibility on yourself if someone mistreats you.

Use tech tools or remove your social media accounts: Deleting your social media accounts may seem hasty and “not an option” for some, but doing so could be the quickest approach to stop cyberbullying because social media can have many negative consequences on your welfare. However, you can block or report the harasser(s) if you don’t want to completely erase your social network account. Blocking the person might not be the best course of action if you are receiving significant threats, such as bodily harm, and it may be necessary to contact your local authorities.

Discuss online-related issues: Make sure your daughter knows they may turn to you if they receive any improper, perilous, or disturbing messages online. Talk to your daughter about the value of refraining from posting offensive or aggressive content online as well as acceptable conflict resolution techniques.

Next Steps

If your daughter has been victimized by cyberbullying on social media, the highly trained staff at Evangelhouse can help. Whether it’s through individual or group therapy, or as part of our therapeutic milieu, our girls at Evangelhouse receive the therapeutic support and positive peer interaction necessary to heal and grow. Please give us a call today at 1-800-924-4012 to discuss your daughter’s needs.

Self-Esteem and Bullying

Parents often contact us at Evangelhouse with concerns that their daughter has been bullied at their school of origin back home. However, many parents are unaware of any preventative steps they can take now to mitigate the negative effects of bullying, either online or face-to-face. Asking open-ended questions and interacting with your teen daughter can help parents establish and sustain a connection that can make her feel more secure. Your daughter likely finds significant support in your relationship with her. If you have a safe and honest relationship with your daughter, they are more likely to come to you if they are the victim of bullying.

A decline in social and communication skills is a primary way bullying affects one’s sense of self. It’s crucial for parents to support these actions by complimenting children directly on their behavior, such as by saying, “Wow, you did a really excellent job advocating for yourself today,” or “I really admire how nice of a friend you are.” Positive attributes that you notice in your child can be expressed aloud to help them fight negative self-talk when they’re feeling sad and hard on themselves. Even if your daughter doesn’t show you any love in return, it can still be beneficial to maintain a positive attitude about how much they mean to you. Even if they don’t acknowledge it, they are always hearing you.

Parents often struggle to explain to their daughters why some teens behave in a bullying manner to them. People frequently assume that children who bully do so because they have low self-esteem—that is, because they don’t think highly of themselves. But is this actually the case? If you’ve ever dealt with a bully in your life, you might be curious as to why they look so confident in themselves given that bullies are often thought of as having low self-esteem. In actuality, experts have discovered that a bully’s hurtful behavior has less to do with their self-esteem and more to do with the sensation of shame.

Shame is related to how you view yourself and is brought on by failing to meet your own expectations. Shame is distinct from guilt, another feeling you could experience if you don’t live up to social expectations. If your actions have caused someone else harm, you could feel guilty, but you can also choose to ignore your guilt. But shame makes you believe that your entire being is flawed. If a child feels that particular aspects of himself—her looks, friendships, performance, socioeconomic standing, or the behavior of family members—don’t measure up to what he perceives as “good enough” or ideal traits, she may feel ashamed about herself.

The bottom line is that bullies are adept at making other people feel ashamed. There is no connection between children who act aggressively against other children and low self-esteem, according to research. In fact, psychologists have discovered that although bullies tend to have high self-esteem, they are also extremely “shame-prone.”

This finding indicates that bullies are concerned that their weaknesses or failures may be revealed. Having strong self-esteem despite having shame-related issues is what causes someone to behave aggressively. Because it diverts attention away from the aspects of themselves that they are embarrassed of, their harsh behavior against others maintains their sense of self-worth.

Here are some simple solutions we suggest to your child that might mitigate the negative effects of being bullied:

  • Speak to someone; it can make you feel less alone to have someone listen to you. You could consult a friend, relative, or other responsible adult. You can, of course, always speak with one of our counselors or mentors.
  • Remind yourself that you are sufficient. When we’re down, we never seem to remember all the wonderful things we’ve accomplished. Start a Gratitude Journal to serve as a constant reminder that you are enough.
  • Make a list of all your strongest traits: Self-love is crucial and can significantly boost our self-esteem and confidence.
  • Get rid of all the unpleasant pages and users on your social media accounts by unfollowing or blocking them. While receiving “likes” and other good feedback can lift your spirits and give you more self-assurance, it’s vital to remember that you should never depend on them to make you feel better.
  • Spend time with happy individuals since being in a toxic friendship group may significantly affect your confidence and self-esteem and sap your vitality. Our mental health depends on having supportive friends. They keep us resilient, boost our self-esteem, and assist us in managing stress.
  • No matter how big or small, it’s crucial to recognize and appreciate your accomplishments. Setting goals is one of the most crucial things a person can do, and accomplishing them (no matter how long it takes) is another.

Finally, if your teen daughter is not able to function in school or with peers due to bullying, it may be time for a change. At Evangelhouse, we provide a healthy campus culture that can create corrective experiences to undo the negative effects of bullying by fostering healthy peer relationships.  Contact us at Evangelhouse to discuss how we may help your daughter get back on track.

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