Uh oh, looks like someone you know is showing a very nasty side online. This won't be easy, but here are some things you can do.
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.
If you see some online cruelty that really bothers and confuses you because the sender is a friend, talk with a trusted adult about it. You'll feel better, and they may have good ideas on how to handle it.
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 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. Or if you don't feel like talking, you can contact them online at kidshelpphone.ca
What else can you do if your friend is cyberbullying?
Be part of the solution by deleting or refusing to pass cyberbullying messages, posts or photos along.
Stay true to your principles. You know online hate is wrong. Speak up and tell your friend. If you hold your tongue because you don't want to make waves, you're letting yourself down, and allowing the victim to suffer.
Look back five years from now and be able to say, “I had the courage to say something.”