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September 20, 2022, 12:37
What is harmful content on the Internet? These are materials that encourage dangerous or illegal activity that threatens serious physical harm or death. For example, the use of dangerous objects and substances that are not food products and can cause poisoning or otherwise harm health; actions that may result in frostbite, burns or electric shocks; self-injury or mutilation; pranks that cause serious emotional upheavals – dramatization of death or suicide, violence; pornographic materials.
How does harmful content affect children?
Psychological traumatization from what was seen;
Obsessive experience of fear;
Normalization of violence, early sexual relations, risky behavior.
How does a child signal that something has happened to him on the Internet?
By behavior, alienation, loneliness, restlessness, apathy, lack of interest in what was previously important, self-harm are observed;
Mood — there is sadness, irritation in relation to everything around;
Appearance – children in a crisis situation may look unkempt due to indifference to the impression they make on others;
Changes in nutrition — decrease or lack of appetite;
Somatic symptoms — headache, abdominal pain without changes in physical health;
Violation of the sleep pattern — insomnia is observed, often with early awakening or, on the contrary, getting up later than usual, nightmares;
Skipping lessons or academic failure;
Words about feelings of guilt or shame, about suicidal thoughts or intentions.
If a child behaves risky due to the influence of online content, parents should:
Understand your own experiences and emotions at this moment;
Talk to the child to understand the reasons why this happens and how you can help;
If necessary, you should contact:
a psychologist — to receive psychological support,
law enforcement authorities — if a child suffers from cyberbullying, threats or blackmail,
educational institution — if other students or classmates of the child are involved.
The child behaves at risk due to the influence of content on the network: how parents can talk to the child
Reassure the child that you are nearby, ready to listen and help. Emphasize to the child that he is now safe.
Watch your tone during the conversation. If you start the conversation in a directive tone, you can scare the child, and he is more likely to give you the answers you want to hear, rather than the truth that happened to him. Try to make the conversation casual – this will allow the child to relax.
Ask open questions. For example, “Please share what caused such experiences in you? What has influenced your behavior lately?”.
Listen and hear. Allow the child to tell in the rhythm that he wants now. Do not take all the words in your direction – the child can express himself quite aggressively. Try to hear exactly what it is talking about and what it needs now.
Avoid judgments and accusations.
Use “I” messages. Instead of “How could this happen?” — “I sympathize
what did you have to go through like that…”.
Thank the child for sharing his feelings.
Who to turn to for help?
Government consultation line on children’s safety on the Internet 1545 (3) The line was created to raise the awareness of children, parents and professionals who work in contact with children about warning and responding to the risks that children can face on the Internet – anonymously, 24 hours a day, free of charge.
Psychological support line on the topic of online risks https://stop-sexting.in.ua/ .Works for children affected by online risks. Parents whose children are victims of the Internet can also apply for help.
Cyber police. The application can be submitted online: https://ticket.cyberpolice.gov.ua/