Have You Taught Your Teen This Crucial Life Skill?

By Toni Birdsong


The taste of trepidation in our house this week is palpable, as my daughter approaches her first day of high school. As a freshman she’s anxious about finding her classes, making new friends, tough teachers, and of course, the social hierarchy, better known as “mean girls.”

Chances are she won’t escape her high school years conflict-free be it in school or online, very few do. As a mom I can’t influence whom she meets at school—it’s an area where we parents have zero control. The only area I do have control over is making sure she doesn’t become one of the mean girls or stand by while someone else is targeted.

According to a 2014 McAfee study, cyberbullying has tripled with 87% of youth having witnessed cyberbullying due to their own or another’s appearance, race, religion, or sexuality.

My daughter and I have had some important conversations this summer on some of the new social scruples ahead and how to handle them. However, the toughest value to teach—and perhaps most critical—is that of empathy, which I believe is the one emotional skill that could handily alleviate about 80% of the bullying taking place today.

Empathy is making the attempt to understand another person’s …read more

Read the full article here: http://blogs.mcafee.com/consumer/taught-teen-crucial-life-skill

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