June 25 – Listen, think and then speak ….

Smartphone Citizenship – When I first saw this site from the Canadian Centre for Child Protection, it is one that every adult should look at.  It really doesn’t matter if you are raising children right now or not.  This is something that everyone should be knowledgeable about.  Being digitally responsible is not only a teenage thing.  It is something that we have to be constantly aware and more aware of.  Then I came across Richard Guerry website on Parenting Today’s Kids.  He also has videos, articles and books related to Digital Privacy, internet safety, social media and much more.  When I watched his You Tube video, what he said makes a lot of sense.  As do the words of a good friend of mine who is also a social media educator – Jesse Miller/Mediated Reality.  Both men talk about the ways social media has affected the lives of today’s youth and their families.  What kids do using technology?   How we can and should use our technology safely?  What we should and should not say and post?  And so much more.  I will be very interested in listening to Richard Guerry speak this weekend a the the Girls and Bullying Conference in Las Vegas.  Social media, cyberbullying, online luring, sexual exploitation of teens.  These are all things we must learn about.  Probably the best place to do this is (ironically) online.  There are so many articles, knowledgeable speakers and even books to read.

I shouldn’t be surprised, but … and I am being honest here …. not a day goes by when I don’t hear of a story about a young person suffering from the fate of bullying or cyberbullying.  Then the depression and self harm may set in.  We try and say ‘Take your kids off the internet and social media’.  But the stuff still swirls while your child is not there.  The damage is still being done if the child is going to school and confronting those same peers.  So how do we stop it?  We have to work at the beginning levels.  Teach kids when they are young how to use the digital tools responsibly.  Teach about the kindness and respect.  We can’t take the digital tools away.  They are and will be a part of the natural elements.  These same digital tools can be and are being used in the classrooms in a variety of ways.  So it’s time that we (as educators and parents) start to have the discussions daily about what to do with those tools.  How to use them wisely?  And how NOT to use them.

This is my own opinion but I sometimes think that we need to talk about the WHAT HAPPENS IF situations.  The true stories of kids who have taken their lives because of bullying/cyberbullying.   We are learning that not all kids are resilient.  Just like this story – http://www.katu.com/news/investigators/Boy-17-says-cyberbullying-led-to-suicide-attempt-212830981.html .  The sentence that struck me when reading this article was “KATU is purposely not sharing how Marcus tried to take his own life.   The suicide experts we spoke with said that can be harmful.”  I agree with this statement 100%.   I cannot count the number of times people ask and I won’t answer.  Oh by the way,  whatever the UK press printed in their newspapers back in October about Amanda’s death, their so called facts were never verified.  Wonder how the media works out there??


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I want to take the time here to write to a young girl that reached out to me over Facebook a few months ago.

Dear L***,

You contacted me a few months ago and shared your stories.  The pain and distress of your messages were and are heartbreaking.  No one should be feeling what you are feeling.  From what I gather, you are a bright young lady with a promising future.  You just completed grade 11 and you have one more year until graduation.  Then it can be university for more science and math courses which you find so easy.   You talk about going into medicine maybe.  Or some field where you can help people.  There are so many universities that you can go to in Canada.  I hope you are thinking about which ones to apply to and also to try and get scholarships.  I found out yesterday that you are back in the hospital as you continue to not eat properly.  You need to eat and sleep and nourish your body and brain.   There are many that care about you and want you well.  You might not have met us yet.  But as you get better, you may get the chance to give us hugz.

Open your heart and let the doctors get you better… sleep well princess…


(Amanda would want you well!!)

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About Carol Todd

Being the mother of Amanda Todd has lead me on this journey shortly after Amanda's death on October 10, 2012. Amanda's prolific You Tube video has been viewed over 33 million times. Through this video, there has been an increased awareness about cyberbullying, social media safety and mental health. www.amandatoddlegacy.org
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5 Responses to June 25 – Listen, think and then speak ….

  1. H.I.D. says:

    For the last part of Carols message…….
    To L—, if you are reading this, please, please do get stronger.
    It will get better, it is a period of time that you are going through
    right now …….. that you can see no way out. Ask me how I know.
    But, it will get better, and later on in life, you may even ask yourself…….
    why did I do that ? What was so seriously wrong in my life at that

    I know you will pull through this.

    Take it day by day. People Do Care.


  2. Savetheworld says:

    My heart aches for all the children in the world being bullied. I just want to reach out to all of them! Wish I could hug them all and tell them that its going to be ok. Dearest miss L. the world needs you, you matter, you are beautiful and you are loved, don’t let the energy vampires get to you. We are here for you and we care. We want to see you blossom into a young lady and we want to see you succeed!!! Same goes for you Marcus, you matter, you are beautiful and you are loved!!! Carol, We have no control over others unfortunately, yes our schools should be very actively involved, we have to give them more power, its been taken away from them over the years. I personally believe that the only real solution is to enforce serious strict rules and laws. The bully should be held accountable for his or her actions, even if they are under age, or make the parents accountable you’ll see how quickly they will get involved if they are forced to pay huge fines. This would be a start, easy to implement and its a win win situation. Get them where it hurts, there really should be consequences. We also need to remove the ability for people to comment anonomously on the various sites.? Whats that all about? Just asking for trouble for sure!! Google and Yahoo etc plus all the large social media sites should should create a database with all accounts and infomration like IP address etc. computer Serial numbers should be registered etc, so that authorities could pin-point the culprits. Safeguards must be put in place period! Applications can also have options that you can se,t that would not allow anyone to write anything crude or lude on your page and vice-versa. There are so many things that can be done, it aggrevates me that changes are not being made! I would love to see something implemeted where you can only create an account by registering it at a govt office. There a lot of sickos out there, how can we possibly allow all these people free reign on the internet? It just doesn’t make any sense! I truly believe that the computer industry has let us down big-time they are not protecting anyone. They have no social concious at all, all they care about is the big buck! This is why the govt needs to enforce certain rules and regulations. This has become an epedemic and I tru;y believe its only get worse if we don’t do something now!
    Big hugz to all xo


    • Savetheworld says:

      That would be an invasion of privacy but I truly don’t know what else can be done? People need to be held accountable for their actions . High fines! More security easier removal of information webwide security ownership of pictures video etc instant reporting and removal of all contact with alleged person etc we need to start somewhere.


  3. la Punisher says:

    Yup.. The old cliché, Only believe half of what you read and nothing of what you hear…

    Hugz 2U Carol


  4. merle48 says:

    Simple quote: “Think before you speak.” Although some people are actually thinking of ways to hurt someone with words, I’d rather believe most of the time it is unintentional. Media is also guilty of writing many words that hurt or aren’t true to life. How a paper so far away can be in the “know” always baffles me. There was an incident in my hometown last summer involving the deaths of some teens which made headlines across my country, etc. The original story, and the supposed facts about my town and all involved were a mish-mash of unreliable information! Of course the people that live in the immediate area usually know a lot more than a media outlet thousands of miles away…and that also goes for people…unless they are immediate family involved, the ideas they come up with are mostly wild speculation, if you know what I mean!


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