Cyberbullying is a serious business and in Canada it is sometimes a crime. I hear you when you say “I don’t want to be the one to call the cops”, so don’t. But remember that a friend is someone who helps when the times are tough and cyberbullying is tough.
Below are a few tips to help YOU help your friend through their cyberbullying nightmare:
Don’t jump in. This might go without saying, except in todays online world it is easy to get caught up in the excitement. Stay calm and think it through
Stand up against the online bullying. If you know the person doing it, tell them it’s not okay with you, but don’t get any more confrontational than that.
Talk to an adult. Yes, I know you think they won’t understand but someone you know will. Your parents, (sometimes even grand parents), favourite teacher, older brother sister, student councillor…
Call out the cyberbullying online. Use words like “That’s mean!” or “Stop it!” to show everyone you don’t approve. Many others may have been waiting for someone brave enough to take a stand, all it takes is one person and others may join to help stop it.
If you are afraid to call them out with your own account, create a new account then do it. Be sure to create some other content first and “like” or retweet other content so it is no so obvious that this is coming from a ‘fake’ account. If you are going to use a fake account to stand up for your friend, do not tell ANYONE (except your parents if it comes to that). You can keep your secrets but others just can’t.
If you feel physical threats are involved or safety is at risk, tell a teacher or get the police involved. It’s not ‘tattling’ on your friend if someone’s safety is at stake.
If you’re unsure of what to do, a counsellor at Kids Help Phone can help you come up with solutions. Call 24-7 at 1-800-668-6868. It’s free and always confidential. If you don’t feel like talking, you can live chat with them online at kidshelpphone.ca
This guide is not just for those who smoke cigarettes; it can also be useful if you use other tobacco products, such as smokeless products or little cigars. The quitting process is very similar to that of a cigarette smoker. Many facts are tailored to smokers; however, much of the information is applicable to you.
Now is a great time to quit smoking!
Day 1 – Pick a Quit Day
Learn YOUR smoking triggers and make a plan to tackle tempting situations.
Don’t try to quit on Friday or any day you know you are going to have major social pressures.
A Tuesday works for many teens.
WHEN you get a craving, grab a snack and go do something… anything to keep your hands and body busy.
Take a music break (instead of a smoke break) when you study.
Stay away from smoky areas.
Try relaxation breathing or yoga if you get stressed.
Using alcohol or drugs can make it harder to stay away from smoking, so don’t.
Day 2 – Reward Yourself
24 hours without smoking is a real victory so celebrate and do something special for yourself, like going to see a movie or spending time with friends.
Choose your rewards carefully. Drinking alcohol is not a good reward because it may make you want to smoke.
Day 3 – Take Control
Withdrawal symptoms during the first three days are pretty common so remind yourself that it will get better!
After three weeks they should be mostly gone – so don’t give up
Make a list of things you can do to deal with withdrawal symptoms.
Day 4: Stick To The Program
Keep looking ahead. Think of yourself as a non-smoker. You can get back on track, even if you slip up.
Learn new ways to deal with life’s ups and downs without returning to smoking.
Exercise! It can do for you what smoking used to do.
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