Research shows teenagers are bullying themselves online - | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports


Research shows teenagers are bullying themselves online

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There's some surprising new information about bullying and it might not be what you would expect.

A new study shows a large number of teenagers are posting mean things about themselves online.

If you're a parent, it's likely you've talked to your children about cyberbullying. But, what might come as a surprise is new research that shows an alarming number of teenagers are bullying themselves online.

Researchers say, in a first of it's kind study, numbers show out of 5,700 middle and high school students surveyed nationally, around 6% or about 342 admitted to participating in digital self-harm.

"Basically, digital self-harm is when somebody post something hurtful online about themselves," says criminal justice professor Justin Patchin.

Patchin says, "What we saw in the data are the boys were more likely to say it was a joke or it wasn't that big of a deal, where the girls were more likely to say the reason was more serious like depression or self-hate or looking to get a response from their friends kind of things."

The study also stated more research is needed.

The main takeaway here is that it's important for parents to keep open-communication and to have an open mind when talking about cyberbullying with their children.

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