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BGCA’s third annual Cyber Safe Futures #CyberSafe #IC #ad

“I participated in an Influencer Activation on behalf of Influence Central for Boys & Girls Clubs of America. I received a promotional item to thank me for my participation.”

I was really shocked when I started using the computer, at the unwanted things that go on, like cyber bullying. Until I had my {failed} back surgery, the only time I used a laptop/computer was when I performed EKG’s on our patients. I also used them for stress tests and/or when I needed to get a copy of their blood work and other health related results from the hospital. Being connected online just felt foolish to me since I didn’t have time for anything beyond work and kids.

And then along came my spine collapsing. Then failed back surgery. I was stuck in the bed for approximately 4 years following surgery. I didn’t want to deal with the pain of getting up and trying to sit, walk, stand etc, so I listened to my doctors (17 of them) tell me that my life as I knew it prior was over. Well, after 4 years I was MAD. Mad at the world. Mad at my doctors, mad at everyone.

About that time, my first grandchild was born. He was/is my heart. I thought about all of the ball games I would miss and all of the other activities I would miss, so I called my local medical rental company and asked them to bring me a cane, walker and a wheel chair. Being mad at my doctors meant (in my mind) that I didn’t have to listen to a thing they said. I threw my back brace away and I decided it was time to get up. I don’t recommend that you not listen to your doctors advice. That’s the worst idea you could ever have. They are the ones with the degrees and by all means listen to them. In my case, I chalked it up to being that nurses make the worst patients and think they can self diagnose themselves, which is what I did.  It was time to turn my life around.  Grand-kids do that as you’ll find out if you aren’t a grandparent yet.

I then called my daughter and asked her to go shopping for me and on my list was a computer. I handed her a blank check and told her to get everything I needed in the way of a computer, desk, chair, supplies. I’d been hearing about blogging and I wanted my chance to grumble and complain about all of the pain I was dealing with. By golly… I wanted to tell all.  Well, she picked up a desktop computer which meant I had to sit. I couldn’t sit. But I was determined to fuss and get my voice online. Don’t get in the way of a mad woman. So, sitting I learned to do and that took several years. It never occurred to me that I could take the computer back and exchange it for a laptop. Thank heavens for that. Little did I know I was on my way to being able to get around to the point that I’d never have to miss a ball game by the time Tyler was old enough to play. I’m not going to bore you with the details but lets just say I invented some new words during that time. Ladies, imagine being in labor for years on end. Men, imagine having a kidney stone for years on end.   Now, imagine trying to sit with that pain.  And that won’t even touch the amount of pain I was in.

Somehow I stumbled on a chat site but me being naive about computers and anything on them, I wasn’t sure what that was or meant but I sure liked the music they played. I couldn’t sit long enough to put two sentences together for this blog I wanted to have, but I could listen. And while listening, I started sitting 30 seconds a day, you read that right and don’t ask me what words came out of my mouth during that seemingly endless time. It was a Christian chat room & they played Christian alternative music. It soothed me. I’d get up, turn my computer on, and my day was spent listening to the music.

One day, I had the music going and although I never paid attention to what was going on other than listening to the music, I heard the music go off and someone got on a microphone and was bashing what they called fat kids. I could tell it was a young boy and boy was he full of hate.  Hate like I’ve never experience before in my life. I’m sure the blood left my body as I listened because I couldn’t hardly breathe. No one I knew talked like that, not even my patients who were not the most pleasant to be around when they were sick. After all of the blood drained out of my body, or so it seemed, my blood returned and start to boil because I was furious. I was so emotional because it was my first experience with that kind of hate. And prejudice.  I live in Georgia for gosh sakes.  No one hates anyone in Georgia.  I was trying to deal with the chronic pain that I’d have to live with forever, I was trying not to blame God or my doctors, but in that instant I forgot all of that & I focused in on the cyber bully. I prayed for him and over the next months he became one of the most pleasant and respectful young man I knew. He just needed someone to care.

That was my first reality check of what cyber bulling meant and all I could think of was my grandson. I didn’t want anyone to bully him at any point in his life. I became protective and learned everything I could about the computer.  I now have 5 grand kids and I get around pretty well for someone who lives with chronic back pain. I can shop like no one you’ve ever met, lol. I can shout and sit at ball games. I can spend hours in my kitchen whipping up goodies for the kids to eat. I don’t dwell on my never ending pain like I used to but I do dwell on cyber bullying because I know first hand how harmful it and other behavior can be online. I teach {preach} to my grands how to stay safe online. I also make sure they are not on the bad end of bullying by teaching them that everyone is special and important. You just never know who’s kids are doing the bullying but the fact is, they are someone’s kids. Because June is Internet Safety Awareness Month, I thought this would be a good time to introduce the hard work that BGCA’s Cyber Safety Ambassadors are doing to help keep your kids #CyberSafe. With an incredible panel of Boys & Girls Club teens from around the world, you can get answers to your questions about cyber safety.

You might have a lot of questions or just a few on how you can help keep your kids safe online and that’s okay, we all have our concerns when it comes to the internet.   You can visit the BGCA’s Cyber Safe Site to get your questions answered so you can become more aware of cyber bullying.  The Boys & Girls Clubs of America provides resources for parents to help keep your kids safe from cyber bullying. I’ve learned a lot on the site by reading the questions and answers other parents have concerning their kids safety and I’m sure you will as well. I had a few questions of my own that I wanted to ask.

stopbullying

Don’t be naive about cyber bullying like I was. I encourage you to take the CyberSmart Parent Quiz because you might not be as aware of cyber bullying as you think you are. BGCA’s is celebrating their third annual Cyber Safe Futures and they have the answers we all want to know. Tell your family and friends about CyberSafeFutures.org and help prevent cyber bullying.

quiz

Additional resources.
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/bgca.clubs?fref=ts

Twitter: https://twitter.com/BGCA_Clubs

How do you help your child to be “Cyber Safe” and how can you use the resources that the Boys & Girls Clubs of America have provided?

“I participated in an Influencer Activation on behalf of Influence Central for Boys & Girls Clubs of America. I received a promotional item to thank me for my participation.”

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22 Comments

  1. {Erica}EverythingMomandBaby

    July 3, 2015 at 6:37 pm

    We usually just do the parental control on the ipad when he’s using it.

  2. Fariha N.

    July 2, 2015 at 7:21 pm

    We always monitor our kids internet time. You can’t be too safe. The internet is like a whole other world with it’s own dangers.

  3. Shauna s.

    June 28, 2015 at 9:55 am

    Cyber bullying is a terrible thing. When I was 16 some kid from my highschool sent me a mean racist comment but used his girlfriends email. What a jerk. I’m glad there are groups that care about this topic now.

  4. Kerri

    June 27, 2015 at 9:43 pm

    This is a topic that is super important to me. My daughter is in middle school and I try to talk to her all the time about using the internet safely. I will have to take the quiz.

  5. Bismah

    June 27, 2015 at 2:19 pm

    My two boys are just toddlers so I don’t have to worry. However in future I would like to avail of a good program to help ensure that my boys are safe when using the internet.

  6. tammileetips

    June 27, 2015 at 1:22 am

    it really is scary what is available to the kids on the internet now. These are great safety tips, I love this campaign from the Boys & Girls Club!

  7. Alicia

    June 26, 2015 at 9:42 pm

    This is a great campaign. We are hyper sensitive about what our children access via the internet or social media. All texts/social media posts can easily be accessed by us at anytime.

  8. Liz Mays

    June 26, 2015 at 6:46 pm

    It was a pretty big shock when I realized what people could be like over the internet. That was back in the late nineties I think! Cyber safety is so important.

  9. Jeanine

    June 26, 2015 at 1:59 pm

    This is really great and so important. I allow my kids monitored screen time in the room with me. I have parental blocks and make sure I am on top of everything! You can’t ever be too safe

  10. Jenn

    June 26, 2015 at 1:37 pm

    This is awesome that the Boys & Girls club are providing this resource. Its such a scary thing these days with the internet and our kids. Mine are only allowed online when they are in the living room so I could check in from time to time.

  11. harriet

    June 26, 2015 at 1:22 pm

    Cyber-bullying is such a serious topic. It can really happen to about anyone. Great post!

  12. Jeannette

    June 26, 2015 at 12:43 pm

    This is a great resource! I always worry about my kids being online and am diligent about keeping an eye on what they are doing.

  13. Sandy

    June 26, 2015 at 11:08 am

    Yes, we do need organizations like these! Thanks for posting–I’m sure it will come in handy. ;)

  14. Zena's Suitcase

    June 26, 2015 at 10:35 am

    It’s good to have a resource like this to go to as the internet can be a daunting place. We use parental controls and talk to our kids about privacy and not sharing to much on the internet

    1. Terri Beavers

      June 26, 2015 at 11:09 am

      I’m thrilled to see that you are helping to keep your kids safe.

  15. CAROL CASSARA

    June 26, 2015 at 10:14 am

    Forgot to say, I don’t have children but I do blog about this topic.

    1. Terri Beavers

      June 26, 2015 at 11:10 am

      Glad to see you are doing your part to help by spreading info on this topic.

  16. CAROL CASSARA

    June 26, 2015 at 10:13 am

    Glad to see an organization stepping up to help. Cyber bullying is out of control these days.

    1. Terri Beavers

      June 26, 2015 at 11:10 am

      It is out of control and we all need to help get it under control. Thanks so much.

  17. Robin (Masshole Mommy)

    June 26, 2015 at 9:55 am

    How great that the Boys & Girls clubs are helping to keep the kids safe. I always do everything in my power to make sure my kids are safe!

    1. Terri Beavers

      June 26, 2015 at 11:12 am

      I’m so happy to hear that and it is great that the BGCA are doing what they can to help keep our kids safe and by helping us to become more aware of how to keep our kids #CyberSafe.

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