Monday, July 22, 2013

Bullying can happen anywhere. Many children and teens are regular victims of bullying, which can lead to serious emotional scarring and problems with the victim's self-esteem and self-image. Correcting these behaviors before they start or get out of hand is important for parents and educators to keep in mind. In this article we are discussing the facts on bullying and how you can watch for warning signs in victims of bullying as well as in children who might be bullies themselves.

Types of bullying:

  • Verbal. This type of bullying usually involves name calling and or teasing
  • Social. Spreading rumors, intentionally leaving others out of activities on purpose, breaking up friendships are all examples of social bullying.
  • Physical. This traditional form of bullying involves hitting, punching, shoving and other acts of intention physical harm.
  • Cyberbullying. This method of bullying involves using the Internet, texting, email and other digital technologies to harm others.


Cyber-bullying prevention tips


Establish rules:  If your teenager has a cell phone or access to the Internet or both, be sure to sit down with them and review the Rules of Engagement agreement for such use, and have them agree

to your rules by signing the agreement.

Obey age restrictions:  Obey age limitations set by social networks. Facebook requires users to be at least 13-years-old.

Sexting and Internet avoidance:  If your young child has a cell phone, make sure that it can't access the Internet. If their phone has a camera/video feature, contact your provider to disable their MMS service.

Invest in Smart Limits:  This service allows parents to "set text boundaries, disable text service after bedtime, and control who can be blocked from sending texts, among other benefits.

Check privacy and security settings, guard passwords: Double check all of your child's security settings to be sure they are all set to private and instruct your child to never share their passwords with anyone.

Know your child's friends:  Frequently monitor who your child is connected to. Be sure they are people that they know in real life, and people you trust.

Closely monitor Internet and cell phones:  For young children, keep the computer in a visible place, and spot check text messages, videos and photos.

Think before posting: Help your child manage their online image and reputation. Encourage your child to treat others online as they want to be treated in real life. It's crucial they understand what's posted on the Internet stays on the Internet forever.

Limit Personal Information: Be cautious about how much personal information your child posts. The more detailed the information, the easier it is for online predators, hackers, etc. to use their information to commit crimes.

Ignore/Block/Report:  Show your child how to ignore, block and report people who aren't being nice to them, whether in person, by text message or on the Internet. Ignoring isn't always the answer, but getting into a text or social network war by responding is the wrong answer. Help your child understand how important it is to not respond to any negative messages and to immediately report them to a trusted adult.

Contact the Authorities:  The police take cyber-bullying very seriously. If your child is ever physically threatened or contacted by a stranger, notify the police immediately.

Children lack the maturity and experience to deal with a difficult situation like being the target of a cyber-bully. Children MAY look to a trusted adult to help them respond appropriately and get through difficult situations.


Knowledge is power! If you are aware of what's happening, you can get involved and facilitate change.


Cyber-bullying prevention tips are provided by

Shawn Marie Edgington, a cyberbullying prevention expert.

For more information or for victim’s services in Humboldt County, please contact AVA-CASA. All advocates are mandatory reporters and required by law to report any knowledge or reasonable cause that a minor is being abused or neglected.


This column is not is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical or psychological advice or treatment.



The mission of AVA is to empower those victimized by abuse and/or violence through advocacy and crisis intervention and to raise awareness in the community about the cause, impact, and prevention of relationship abuse, sexual violence, child abuse and neglect, and bullying.

Tri-County CASA supports and promotes volunteer advocacy to protect the best interests of abuse and neglected children in Humboldt, Lander, and Pershing Counties in Nevada.

Profiling Pedophiles

Profiling Pedophiles

Pedophiles can be anyone -- old or young, rich or poor, educated or uneducated, non-professional or professional, and of any race. However, pedophiles often demonstrate similar characteristics, but these are merely indicators and it should not be assumed that individuals with these characteristics are pedophiles. Knowledge of these characteristics coupled with questionable behavior can be used as an alert that someone may be a pedophile.

Characteristics of a Pedophile :

·                        Often the pedophile is male and over 30 years of age.

·                        Single or with few friends in his age group.

·                        If married, the relationship is more "companion" based with no sexual relations.

·                        He is often vague about time gaps in employment which may indicate a loss in employment for questionable reasons or possible past incarceration.

Pedophiles Like Child-like Activities:

·                        Is often fascinated with children and child activities appearing to prefer those activities to adult oriented activities.

·                        Will often refer to children in pure or angelic terms using descriptives like innocent, heavenly, divine, pure, and other words that describe children but seem inappropriate and exaggerated.

·                        Has hobbies that are child-like such as collecting popular expensive toys, keeping reptiles or exotic pets, or building plane and car models.

Pedophiles Often Prefer Children Close to Puberty:

·                        Pedophiles often have a specific age of child they target. Some prefer younger children, some older.

·                        Often environment or a special room will be decorated in child-like decor and will appeal to the age and sex of the child he is trying to entice.

·                        Many pedophiles often prefer children close to puberty who are sexually inexperienced, but curious about sex.

Pedophiles Around Children:

The pedophile often will be employed in a position that involves daily contact with children. He may put himself in a position to do volunteer work with children, often in a supervisory capacity such as sports coaching, unsupervised tutoring or a position where he has the opportunity to spend unsupervised time with a child.

The Target Child:

The pedophile often seeks out shy, handicapped, and withdrawn children, or those who come from troubled or under privileged homes. He then showers them with attention, gifts, taunting them with trips to desirable places like parks, zoo's, concerts, the beach, etc.

Manipulation of the Innocent:

Pedophiles master manipulative skills and unleash them on troubled children by becoming their friend and building the child's self esteem. They may refer to the child as special or mature, appealing to their need to be heard and understood then entice them with adult activities that are sexual in content such as x-rated movies or pictures. They offer them alcohol or drugs to hamper their ability to resist activities or recall events that occurred.

Stockholm Syndrome :

It’s not unusual for the child to develop feelings for the predator and seek their approval and continued acceptance. They will compromise their innate ability to decipher good and bad behavior, ultimately justifying the criminal's behavior out of sympathy and concern for the adults welfare. This is often compared to Stockholm Syndrome - when victims become attached emotionally to their captors.

The Single Parent:

Many times pedophiles will develop a close relationship with a single parent in order to get close to the children. Once inside the home, they have many opportunities to manipulate the children - using guilt, fear, and love to confuse the child.

Fighting Back:

Pedophiles work at stalking their targets and patiently work to develop relationships with them. It’s not uncommon for them to be developing a list of potential victims at any one time. Many of them believe that what they are doing is not wrong and that having sex with a child is actually "healthy" for the child.

Almost all pedophiles have a collection of pronography, which they protect at all costs. Many of them also collect "souvenirs" from their victims. They rarely discard either their porn or collections for any reason.

One factor working against the pedophile is eventually the children will grow up and recall the events that occurred. Often pedophiles are not brought to justice until such time occurs and victims are angered by being victimized and want to protect other children from the same consequences.

Laws such as Megan's Law - a federal law passed in 1996 authorizes local law enforcement agencies to notify the public about convicted sex offenders living, working or visiting their communities, have helped expose the pedophile to better protect their children.