As many of us working with youth know, cyber-bullying is on the rise. Not only are students bullied at school but also online when they get home. Many types of bullying are taking new forms in social media. Kids will get attacked online by other kids from their school, possibly even under a fake name or account to make the bully seem anonymous. The newest phenomenon in cyber-bullying  is being called “digital self-harm”.

Researchers say that there is an alarming number of teens getting bullied online, by themselves.

About 6% of kids from the ages of 12 through 17 have bullied themselves digitally, according to research conducted by Sameer Hinduja, a professor of criminology at Florida Atlantic University and co-director of the Cyberbullying Research Center.

Kids are bullying their own social media accounts using fake ones that they have created. This could be a form of Self-Harm and should be addressed as such with the youth you work with.

The question perplexing researchers is why teens would do this.

When asked why they engaged in digital self-harm, boys were more likely to say they did it as a joke or to get attention, while girls often said they did it because they were struggling with depression.

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