I’ve been a member of tons of online groups. Facebook groups, online forums, ranging from everything from pets to parenting. Honestly, I’ve seen it ALL. I’ve seen members share personal life details they’ve never before had the courage to do more than think about. And I’ve seen group members “outed” to their families by fellow group members upset about a post. I mention this because I recently quit a parenting group I’ve been a part of for two years. Working online, you’d think I’d be used to negative posts and feedback (Hello, Kardashians!) But maybe it was a bad week. Maybe I’d just had enough. But something happened, something I admit was small.
Someone wrote a post – maybe it was actually negative or maybe the writer was misunderstood. Regardless, she received some negative comments and deleted the post. But afterward, someone else reposted it, blasting her by name for her “negative” attitude about the topic. Many users agreed. I logged on, read the comments and agreed with several other commenters who thought what was happening was bullying. Then I removed myself from the group. Maybe it wasn’t bullying, but I don’t regret it. I’m sick of women tearing each other down for our choices or for speaking our minds.
So this piece that about cyberbullying published at work was right on time. How do we expect that our kids will know what cyberbullying is if we ourselves don’t? No matter our choices, we’re all women. And we can agree. But putting someone that is supposed to be your friend on blast for something they rescinded/apologized for/deleted isn’t being a friend. It’s being a bully. And I don’t want to be a part of that.