Signs of Cyberbullying

Many kids and teens who are cyberbullied don't want to tell a teacher, parent, or trusted adults, often because they feel ashamed or fear that their devices will be taken away at home.

Signs of cyberbullying vary, but may include:

  • being emotionally upset during or after using the Internet or the phone
  • being very secretive or protective of one’s digital life
  • spending more time than usual in their room
  • withdrawal from or lack of interest in family members, friends, and activities
  • avoiding school or group gatherings
  • slipping grades and “acting out” in anger at home
  • changes in mood, behavior, sleep, or appetite
  • suddenly wanting to stop using the computer or device
  • being nervous or jumpy when getting a message, text, or email
  • avoiding discussions about computer or phone activities

It can be difficult to recognize the signs of cyberbullying without becoming a  helicopter parent, who is overly anxious and suspicious about what your child is doing on their mobile device. But noticing one or more of these signs can help you pinpoint distress in your child’s life. If that’s the case, create a safe space with open communication for your child to communicate what’s going on in their life.

Sad teen with phone being comforted by her sister