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Are Parents Responsible for Their Cyberbullying Kids?

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Posted by on Jan. 29, 2014 at 9:59 AM
  • 44 Replies

Parents Aren't Responsible for Their Cyberbullying Kids (VIDEO)

by Kiri Blakeley


Parents are suing six teenagers and their parents over cyberbullying their 16-year-old daughter. Texas parents Reymundo Esquivel and Shellie Tingle-Esquivel are enraged that their daughter's classmates allegedly created an Instagram page showing topless and bottomless teens and included their daughter on the page. It's unclear if they were real photos or fake, but the suit alleges that seven classmates "participated in making several malicious, untrue, suggestive, derogatory, inflammatory, and sexually explicit statements regarding the teen."

The Instagram page, which has since been taken down, allegedly showed many topless girl teens and bottomless boy ones and the page was named after the high school they all went to, Klein, combined with a very derogatory term. Apparently the bullying had been going on for a year.

The parents are suing the classmates for libel and their parents for negligence. The bullied teen's father told Click 2 Houston:

It's not just something you see on the news. It could be happening to your child, and your child may not be telling you about it.

Oddly, the parents also told the outlet that their daughter's photo "wasn't necessarily suggestive" but that other photos on the site could be viewed as child porn.

Whatever exactly went on here, it's definitely time that teens realized that slapping whatever they want up on the Internet about other kids is something that should be punished. When I was a teen, we didn't do this kind of stuff -- the Internet wasn't as big as it is now, thank god -- but that time I spray painted the local pool's changing room? Yeah, I spent the whole summer painting it over. I got punished.

Nowadays, whatever goes up about someone on the Internet is likely to remain there forever -- possibly disrupting job searches and relationships long past when the teens committed their little jokes, shenanigans, and bullying.

As for suing the parents -- well, that's a gray area. Certainly there are parents who turn a blind eye to whatever their precious cargo are doing, even if it's nasty s**t. But then there are those who simply have zero clue what's going on. It's difficult if not impossible to monitor your kids' Internet usage 24/7. Especially when kids are being given computers in grammar school for homework.

A lot of parents wouldn't even have a clue what Instagram is (I barely do!). And god knows you can lecture teens until the cows come home about proper online behavior and get nowhere with them. Forcing parents to cough up legal fees or a payout who may simply have had absolutely no idea what was happening is bit much. So I hope the Texas parents have some proof these classmates' parents were truly being "negligent."

Are parents responsible for their kids' cyberbullying? Should the parents be sued too?

Click here for video from Houston

by on Jan. 29, 2014 at 9:59 AM
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Replies (1-10):
Meadowchik
by Silver Member on Jan. 29, 2014 at 10:03 AM

Yes, to some degree, at least.

GLWerth
by Gina on Jan. 29, 2014 at 10:04 AM
2 moms liked this

As a parent, you are responsible for what your kids are doing.

My kids have not hit 16 yet, but I keep up to date on what websites they visit and what they are looking at. DH or I go through browser history regularly (every couple of weeks).

I think the problem in a lot of these cases though is that the parents have set up and atmosphere where doing these sort of things is OK or even encouraged.

Too many people these days think that it is OK to be nasty to someone if you perceive them as being weaker than you are.

Euphoric
by Bazinga! on Jan. 29, 2014 at 10:21 AM
1 mom liked this

 Yes

nana776
by on Jan. 29, 2014 at 10:28 AM

IF, and that is a big if, you can prove that the parents knew about the bullying, then yes, the parents should be held accountable. I fall into the catagory of the parent who tries to keep up, but the kids are way more advanced than I am. I would probably be ignorant of what my kids were doing until it jumped up and slapped me in the face. 

Someone on here told me that they have all their kids internet activity sent to their hard drive. They had to build it themselves. I wish someone would market that and make it available to the general public. They could probably make billions of dollars. Until then, it's next to impossible to keep up. It's too easy for them to just delete the history. 


GLWerth
by Gina on Jan. 29, 2014 at 10:38 AM
1 mom liked this

Hopefully, you have raised them to know that bullying in any way is not acceptable.

If they know and believe that, there shouldn't be a problem.

Quoting nana776:

IF, and that is a big if, you can prove that the parents knew about the bullying, then yes, the parents should be held accountable. I fall into the catagory of the parent who tries to keep up, but the kids are way more advanced than I am. I would probably be ignorant of what my kids were doing until it jumped up and slapped me in the face. 

Someone on here told me that they have all their kids internet activity sent to their hard drive. They had to build it themselves. I wish someone would market that and make it available to the general public. They could probably make billions of dollars. Until then, it's next to impossible to keep up. It's too easy for them to just delete the history. 



SuperChicken
by on Jan. 29, 2014 at 10:41 AM
2 moms liked this

Yes, parents are responsible.  If your little Billy throws a baseball through your neighbors window, do you pay for it?  Same thing here. 

nana776
by on Jan. 29, 2014 at 10:52 AM
1 mom liked this

My have always been really tall and big built. I taught them early on that their size was like a super power, they could use it to protect those that are smaller than they are. They are very popular with the kids that get bullied a lot!! Unfortunately, my dd has been the target of the bullying lately :( 

With the kids having laptops at school, our biggest problem has been getting on social media when they are supposed to be doing school work!! I do monitor dd's b/c I worry about the bullying going online. I know that she will fight back and I worry about it getting out of hand. We talk about it all the time, but I like to check anyway.

I do agree that it all starts with the parenting and starting it long before the issues come up.

Quoting GLWerth:

Hopefully, you have raised them to know that bullying in any way is not acceptable.

If they know and believe that, there shouldn't be a problem.

Quoting nana776:

IF, and that is a big if, you can prove that the parents knew about the bullying, then yes, the parents should be held accountable. I fall into the catagory of the parent who tries to keep up, but the kids are way more advanced than I am. I would probably be ignorant of what my kids were doing until it jumped up and slapped me in the face. 

Someone on here told me that they have all their kids internet activity sent to their hard drive. They had to build it themselves. I wish someone would market that and make it available to the general public. They could probably make billions of dollars. Until then, it's next to impossible to keep up. It's too easy for them to just delete the history. 




GLWerth
by Gina on Jan. 29, 2014 at 11:01 AM
5 moms liked this

Some parents these days (not all, not even the majority, but a sizeable minority) blame the window for being in the way of Billy's ball.

Quoting SuperChicken:

Yes, parents are responsible.  If your little Billy throws a baseball through your neighbors window, do you pay for it?  Same thing here. 


lga1965
by on Jan. 29, 2014 at 11:12 AM
1 mom liked this
Yes, I think they are.
I'd like to know why kids have phones and the Internet ? I would say that a TracFone for communicating with parents is all that is necessary. No Facebook,etc.
If they need a computer for school, they can use mom and dad's . The biggest mistakes made are by indulgent parents who give their kids everything and then ignore the consequence of allowing them to go nuts with their freedom.
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lga1965
by on Jan. 29, 2014 at 11:14 AM
Exactly ! Perfect !

Quoting GLWerth:

Some parents these days (not all, not even the majority, but a sizeable minority) blame the window for being in the way of Billy's ball.

Quoting SuperChicken:

Yes, parents are responsible.  If your little Billy throws a baseball through your neighbors window, do you pay for it?  Same thing here. 


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