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«A Resource Guide for Parents and Teens Developed and Compiled by the Youth Council of the DuPage Workforce Board A Letter to Parents: Your teen’s ...»

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2. Avoid seeing crises as insurmountable problems. You can't change the fact that highly stressful events happen, but you can change how you interpret and respond to these events. Try looking beyond the present to how future circumstances may be a little better. Note any subtle ways in which you might already feel somewhat better as you deal with difficult situations.

3. Accept that change is a part of living. Certain goals may no longer be attainable as a result of adverse situations.

Accepting circumstances that cannot be changed can help you focus on circumstances that you can alter.

4. Move toward your goals. Develop some realistic goals. Do something regularly — even if it seems like a small accomplishment — that enables you to move toward your goals. Instead of focusing on tasks that seem unachievable, ask yourself, "What's one thing I know I can accomplish today that helps me move in the direction I want to go?"

5. Take decisive actions. Act on adverse situations as much as you can. Take decisive actions, rather than detaching completely from problems and stresses and wishing they would just go away.

6. Look for opportunities for self-discovery. People often learn something about themselves and may find that they have grown in some respect as a result of their struggle with loss. Many people who have experienced tragedies and hardship have reported better relationships, greater sense of strength even while feeling vulnerable, increased sense of self-worth, a more developed spirituality and heightened appreciation for life.

7. Nurture a positive view of yourself. Developing confidence in your ability to solve problems and trusting your instincts helps build resilience.

8. Keep things in perspective. Even when facing very painful events, try to consider the stressful situation in a broader context and keep a long-term perspective. Avoid blowing the event out of proportion.

9. Maintain a hopeful outlook. An optimistic outlook enables you to expect that good things will happen in your life. Try visualizing what you want, rather than worrying about what you fear.

10. Take care of yourself. Pay attention to your own needs and feelings. Engage in activities that you enjoy and find relaxing. Exercise regularly. Taking care of yourself helps to keep your mind and body primed to deal with situations that require resilience.

Additional ways of strengthening resilience may be helpful. For example, some people write about their deepest thoughts and feelings related to trauma or other stressful events in their life. Meditation and spiritual practices help some people build connections and restore hope. The key is to identify ways that are likely to work well for you as part of your own personal strategy for fostering resilience.

Source: American Psychological Association Behaviors Teens Can Learn Research has shown that while some people seem to come by resilience naturally, these behaviors can also be learned.

The following are just a few of the techniques your teen should focus on in order to foster their resilience.

Building Positive Beliefs in Abilities- Research has demonstrated that self-esteem plays an important role in coping with stress and recovering from difficult events. Remind your teen of their strengths and accomplishments. Becoming more confident about their ability to respond and deal with crisis is a great way to build resilience for the future.

Finding a Sense of Purpose in Their Lives- Identifying strong interests in hobbies, a future occupation, or athletics, etc.

may provide your teen with the motivation to pursue challenges with tangible goals in mind.

Developing a Strong Social Network- Having caring, supportive people around your teen acts as a protective factor during times of crisis. It is important to have people he or she can confide in. While simply talking about a situation with a friend or loved one will not make troubles go away, it allows them to share their feelings, gain support, receive positive feedback, and come up with possible solutions to problems.

Embracing Change - Flexibility is an essential part of resilience. By learning how to be more adaptable, your teen will be better equipped to respond when faced with a life crisis. Resilient people often utilize these events as an opportunity to branch out in new directions. While some people may be crushed by abrupt changes, highly resilient individuals are able to adapt and thrive.

Being Optimistic- Staying optimistic during dark periods can be difficult, but maintaining a hopeful outlook is an important part of resiliency. Positive thinking does not mean ignoring the problem in order to focus on positive outcomes. It means understanding that setbacks are transient and that individuals have the skills and abilities to combat the challenges they face. What your teen is dealing with may be difficult, but it is important for them to remain hopeful and positive about a brighter future.

Taking Care of Themselves- When we are stressed, it can be all too easy to neglect our own needs. Losing our appetite, ignoring exercise, and not getting enough sleep are all common reactions to a crisis situation.

Developing Effective Problem Solving Skills- Research suggests that people who are able come up with solutions to a problem are better able to cope with problems than those who cannot. Whenever your teen encounters a new challenge, suggest they make a quick list of some of the potential ways they could solve the problem.

Establishing Goals- Crisis situations are daunting. They may even seem insurmountable. When your teen becomes overwhelmed by a situation, suggest that they take a step back to assess the situation. Have them brainstorm possible solutions, and then break them down into manageable steps.

Taking Steps to Solve Problems- Simply waiting for a problem to go away on its own only prolongs the crisis. Instead, encourage your teen to start working on resolving the issue immediately. While there may not be any fast or simple solution, they can take steps toward making the situation better and less stressful. Focus on the progress that they make and planning next steps, rather than becoming discouraged by the amount of work that still needs to be accomplished.

Working on Coping Skills- Resilience may take time to build, so do not become discouraged if your teen still struggles to cope with problematic events. Psychological resilience does not involve any specific set of behaviors or actions, but can vary dramatically from one person to the next.

While people vary dramatically in the coping skills they use when confronting a crisis, researchers have identified some key characteristics of resilience. Many of these skills can be developed and strengthened, which can improve their ability to deal with life's setbacks.

 Awareness - Resilient people are aware of the situation, their own emotional reactions and the behavior of those around them. In order to manage feelings, it is essential to understand what is causing them and why. By remaining aware, resilient people can maintain their control of the situation and think of new ways to tackle problems.

 An Understanding that Setbacks are Part of Life - Another characteristic of resilience is the understanding that life is full of challenges. While we cannot avoid many of these problems, we can remain open, flexible, and willing to adapt to change.

 An Internal Locus of Control:

- Does your teen perceive themselves as having control over their own life? Or do they blame outside sources for failures and problems? Generally, resilient people tend to have what psychologists call an internal locus of control. They believe that the actions they take will affect the outcome of an event. Of course, some factors are simply outside of our personal control, such as natural disasters. While we may be able to put some blame on external causes, it is important for your teen to feel as if they have the power to make choices that will affect their situation, ability to cope, and their future.

 Strong Problem-Solving Skills - Problem-solving skills are essential. When a crisis emerges, resilient people are able to spot the solution that will lead to a safe outcome. In danger situations, people sometimes develop tunnel vision. They fail to note important details or take advantages of opportunities. Resilient individuals, on the other hand, are able to calmly and rationally look and the problem and envision a successful solution.

 Having Strong Social Connections- Whenever people are dealing with a problem, it is important to have people who can offer support. Talking about the challenges your teen is facing can be an excellent way to gain perspective, look for new solutions, or simply express their emotions. Friends, family member, co-workers, and online support groups can all be potential sources of social connectivity.

 Identifying as a Survivor, not a Victim- When dealing with any potential crisis, it is essential to have your teen view themselves as a survivor. They need to avoid thinking like a victim of circumstance and instead look for ways to resolve the problem. While the situation may be unavoidable, they can still stay focused on a potential positive outcome.

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pictures are not appropriate to send. They also I will stay within my plan’s usage limits and __________________________________________

need to know that if they receive a message or review my usage with a parent/guardian if I go (Child)

–  –  –

pictures are not appropriate to send. They also I will stay within my plan’s usage limits and __________________________________________

need to know that if they receive a message or review my usage with a parent/guardian if I go (Child)

–  –  –

According to the National Center for Education Statistics, nearly a third of all students aged 12 - 18 reported having been bullied at school in 2007, some almost daily. This article gives a general background on school bullying.

Types of School Bullying There are different categories of school bullying, and some of the categories overlap. Here are some of the most

important categories that are frequently discussed:

How Many Bullies Pack bullying is bullying undertaken by a group. This kind of bullying is more prominent in high  schools and characteristically lasted longer that bullying undertaken by individuals. Pack bullying may be physical bullying or emotional bullying and be perpetrated in person or in cyberspace. In person, it can take place in schoolyards, school hallways, sports fields and gymnasiums, classrooms, and on the school bus.

Individual bullying is one-on-one bullying that may take place either in person or online, as well as  being physical bullying or emotional bullying. It is more prevalent in elementary schools. It can take place everywhere that pack bullying can, and also in smaller areas into which a pack can't fit, such as bathrooms.

Mode of School Bullying

Physical bullying is bullying that takes the form of physical abuse, such as pushing, shoving, hitting,  fighting, spitting, and tripping. Threats of physical harm and attempts to force people to act in ways they would prefer not to are also included.

Emotional bullying is bullying that involves factors other than physical interaction, such as insults,  derogatory remarks, name calling, and teasing. Also included are attempts to ostracize the victim, such as being left out or ignored, which is sometimes referred to as social bullying, as distinguished from verbal bullying. Emotional bullying could also take the form of purposely misplacing or hiding someone's belongings. Emotional bullying can be done in person or through cyberbullying.

Medium of School Bullying

Face-to-face bullying is bullying in which students confront each other in person.

 Cyber bullying is bullying that takes place online, through either email, chat rooms, social networking  services, text messages, instant messages, website postings, blogs, or a combination of means.

Cyberbullies may conceal their identity so that their victim experiences an anonymous attack. The content of cyberbullying can consist of all of the types of content mentioned in emotional bullying above, including posting insulting and derogatory comments about someone or sending such comments to someone; sending mean or threatening messages; gossiping about someone online including posting sensitive or private information; impersonating someone in order to cast that person in a bad light; and excluding someone from an online page or group. Unwanted contact, also known as harassment, is another form of cyberbullying.

Specific Targets of School Bullying Homophobic bullying is sometimes distinguished because it has a particular target population.

 Bullying of students with disabilities is another type of bullying with a focused target population.

 Racist bullying is a third type of focused bullying that targets people of a specific race or cultural.

 Religious bullying targets people who have specific religious beliefs.

Facts About School Bullying

There is noticeably more bullying in middle school (grades 6, 7, and 8) than in senior high school  Emotional bullying is the most prevalent type of bullying, with pushing/shoving/tripping/spitting on  someone being second Cyberbullying is - for the middle grade levels - the least prominent type of bullying, but it is greater in  the last three years of high school than in grades 6 - 9 Most school bullying occurs inside the school, a lesser amount on school property, and even less on the  school bus. The least occurs in other areas Middle school students, and particularly 6th graders, were most likely to be bullied on the bus  Sixth graders were the most likely students to sustain an injury from bullying, with middle schoolers  more likely to be injured than high school students and the percentage going down every grade from 6 to 12 

Victims of bullying display a range of responses, even many years later, such as:

1. Low self-esteem

2. Difficulty in trusting others

3. Lack of assertiveness

4. Aggression

5. Difficulty controlling anger

6. Isolation


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