Cyber…What?

Cyber bullies can hide behind a mask of anonymity online, and do not need direct physical access to their victims to do unimaginable damage. –Anna Maria Chavez

Personally, as a blogger, I love it when I receive feedback on my posts.  I read the feedback for a few reasons.  Reason number one: It means that a person was interested enough to actually read the post.  Reason number two: It means that after they already took the time to actually read the post, they also took time to make a comment.  Reason number three: As a writer feedback is always nice to have because after all we are our own worse critics.  It is nice to read what people have to say about what I write.  Most of the comments are “Great job, I am going to reblog this, thumbs up, perfect, keep doing what you’re doing, you’re making an impact”.  Which is why I was really shocked when I came upon a comment that was made a couple of days ago.

Below is what I posted on my Facebook page as a response:

I knew the second that I started my blog that I would have my share of critics. All of the responses have been positive and encouraging until I received a comment on a recent post. In the comment very degrading words were wrote. A reference was made that I should have went through with my attempt to end my life that day. Sadly, you, have lit a fire underneath my fingers for a while and there will be more posts to come. You may think that you discouraged me, but you actually angered me to the point of motivation to keep doing what I am doing. I am, always have been and always will be a Warrior.

I really felt discouraged when I first read the comments that an anonymous person left on one of the posts.  How much pain could you be in to tell someone that they should have ended his/her life after all that they have been through?  A lot of emotions started to flood my mind (discouragement, fear, hopelessness, sadness, guilt), with that I also got a huge knot in the middle of my stomach when it came to thinking of the pain that I had the day that I almost ended my life.  After a few minutes of staring at the screen of my computer and re-reading that comment I started to get angry and that anger soon turned into motivation.  I am going to do exactly the opposite of what the person that cyber-bullied me thought that I would do.  I am going to continue writing posts, I have even gotten enough motivation to do daily posts (occasionally on the weekends, depends on time).  I am not going to end my life just because someone thinks that I should’ve gone through with it a few years ago.  I am using the negative words as motivators to keep me going.

Some might ask what this has to do with cyberbullying.  It has a lot to do with the topic, in fact cyberbullying is so powerful that all a persons life can be ended just by someone else`s fingertips.

Here are a few examples of cyberbullying:

1.) A high school bully gets home from school and goes on a social media website.  with just a few movements on his/her keyboard a cyber bully is formed.  Not only can the person get away with doing what he/she types but there is a lot more detail in what is being said.  Mainly because there is no one there to hinder the bullying form stopping, along with the fact that the bully knows that anyone can see what is wrote.

2.) A person comments on picture that somebody posted on social media.  If the comment is about the person in the photo and the comment is very negative; the comment is as a matter of a fact cyberbullying.

3.) Even celebrities get cyber-bullied.  A popular magazine/newspaper/fashion columnists can say the most harsh things.  A current event was when a writer bashed Kelly Clarkson for her weight gain after she had a baby.  It`s what Clarkson replied to the writer that made him apologize.

There are things that can be done to disempower those who are cyberbullying some more easier than others.  Ignoring what the person wrote interly, which is hard to do in todays day and age.  You can report a person to the webpages administrators, can be effective but it can take some time.  A person an reply to the comment which might get the reaction that the person wanted but not the right one.  Clarkson`s reply to what the writer said about her weight was that she loved food too much to be thin.  Or you can just say nothing because eventually if the cyberbully realizes he/she is not affecting you  they will soon stop.

Goal: Don`t give into what they want. Be someone that stands up against cyberbullying.  When it comes to commenting on a persons photo, trust the old saying that if you don’t have something nice to say don’t say anything at all.

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