Everyone with an Internet or social media presence has probably been subjected to some form of cyberbullying. In a powerful new BuzzFeed video, four women respond to cyberbullies and give spot-on advice for how to deal with them. Cyberbullying has been an unfortunate side effect of the Internet age and our growing global social circles. While bringing people closer together, the Internet can also be used as just another channel to criticize or attack people. The ease with which a bully can hide behind their screen, miles and miles away from their target, has made this a frequent and troubling problem. The bullies are removed from their actions. They don’t have to look into the person’s eyes. In fact, they don’t have to say anything at all, just type it. But this distance doesn't lessen the impact that these cowardly actions have on those being bullied. It sucks but people are much more likely to internalize criticisms more fully and in more detail than they are praise. The cruel comments can have a lasting effect and hurt just as much as if they were said face to face.
Sadly, as of yet, there is no perfect firewall to protect against these jerks. But the people at BuzzFeed offer up some excellent advice for how to persevere in the face of cyberbullying. These strong women open up and share some of the most hurtful comments they have received online, and they express how important it is not to hide or allow mean comments to change your behavior. We should all take a lesson out of their playbook. Here are some pointers for how to deal with any instance of cyber-harassment:
Don't Let It Get To You
Don't let those haters get you down! Try to ignore and brush off the worthless comments. Focus on the positive ones!
A strong self-image is your first defense! It's so important to love yourself, and realize that what you're being bullied for is usually what makes you so unique and special. Those bullies are just jelly.
Realize It Has Nothing To Do With You
Try to approach the bullies with empathy. There is probably something difficult going on in their life that is prompting them to act out this way. The comments have literally nothing to do with you! They have everything to do with the bully and their own insecurities.
Don't Let It Stop You
You can't let a coward hiding behind their laptop stop you. You are amazing! Let you're voice be heard!
For more excellent advice for how to deal with cyberbullies, check out the entire video here: