i am so sorry to hear some of your dc's are going through this hell. social media sites and the internet really have made it easier for bullies to target their victims and unfortunately not a lot is being done about it. i too think social networking should only be used by over 18's, or at least make security better so people arent easy targets... for adults too!
im quite at the police taking no notice, especially with all the teenage suicides and whatnot being in the news.
sorry... im not being very helpful here but i hope something is done about it. i hope someone takes it seriously for your childrens sake
I'm not a mum, but am a final year psychology student researching parental responses to cyberbullying (I've got a link to my research project to the media & requests pages of Mumsnet). I'm horrified by what you and your families are all dealing with, and wish I could give you an escape route, but I'm afraid there isn't one (I was cyberbullied/bullied throughout my school years).
What I can suggest is that you report everything to your children's schools and to the police. But don't go in all guns blazing as it's more than likely to make the situation worse if the bullies find out. My mum went in to my high school and made a huge scene, demanding the bullies were brought to the head's office etc etc, and it made things 100 times worse. My bullies went from only targeting me online to targeting me in school- trying to get me into trouble at any possible occasion and even started picking on my boyfriend and sister.
I was also told to keep a log of everything that happened and who the nasty messages etc were sent by; get your children to take screenshots of EVERYTHING that could be classed as cyberbullying. That way when you report it to the school/police etc you'll have solid evidence of what's been happening rather than the usual 'he said, she said' that comes with traditional bullying.
I'd also talking to your children and discussing appropriate websites and behaviours, and help them to set their privacy settings on all of their accounts. I've been an avid facebook user for 5 years now, and still struggle to fully understand the settings but think I've got everything set now. If in doubt, a quick google search should reveal the best way to approach privacy settings for any website.
If you're looking for professional advice, I'd suggest looking at the support pages on the Childline, BeatBullying and NSPCC websites as they've got some great info and advice aimed at both parents and kids.
I'm not an expert by any means, but I've been through cyberbullying myself and know the hurt that your children must be facing. I hope that things get better for yourselves and your families, and that the bullies are made to pay for what they've put you all through. Mine weren't, but going back to my parent's home town and seeing my bullies walking around with little or no future prospects is enough compensation for me!
Am still reeling from what was/is a minor FB incident (compared to what you are going through) involving my teen daughter last week. What strikes me is how difficult it is to get anyone to deal with FB stuff once problemd arise.
The more I hear about FB the more I think there should be a blanket ban on U18s using it.
I am so sorry I know too little about this kind of thing to offer any further advice. So bumping this in the hope someone will see this who can help.
Please do let us know how you get on resolving this - your experience could offer valuable advice to others who find themselves in similar situations.
My 13 year old daughter got bullied so severely that she was forced to move school 7 months ago (She has settled really well into the new school and has made lots of new friends and is generally a happy girl again)
Last week she decided that she was ready to reactivate her fb account (but with the bullies blocked) so she could chat with her new friends. Unfortunately she also joined 'Ask FM' which seems to be a new trend and feeds into FB.
The old bullies somehow got access to her via this and in the space of 3 hours left literally 100s of abusive comments some of which... begging her to die, for her familly to all get cancer and die agonisingly, that she's a whore, slag, ugly, that everybody hates her etc..., and that me, her mum is mental, alcoholic, fat ugly etc.. They also set up a ficticious account as me, making me out to be a paedophile and telling my daughter that I wanted her to kill herself. I am unable to remove any of this and am at my wits end.
I have contacted the police and they wont get involved until Ask FM confirm identities and Ask FM wont respond to us. We filed a CEOPS report and they responded that it was out of their remit and so far the school that the bullies attend have not got back o us.
Please can anyone suggest anything else we could do as my family is in pieces at the moment.
My 13 year old son is bullied through a fraudulent facebook page in his name which contains hurtful messages from people at his school. We have drawn the school's attention to this (wasn't that helpful?), but facebook's policy on reporting abuse when you do not have a facebook page is so ludicrous that I wished to draw your attention to it. Upon clicking on the link which says to report abuse when you do not have an account, I was given two options: 1. Get an account 2. Get a friend to report it for you. Does anyone else think that this is appalling given the seriousness of cyberbullying?