Tell teens Dolly’s sad story

The Gympie Times - - NEWS - OUR VIEW FRANCES KLEIN frances.klein@gympi­etimes.com

THE sad­dest story to make national head­lines this week is that of Amy “Dolly” Everett – the North­ern Ter­ri­tory teenager who died by sui­cide after re­lent­less bul­ly­ing.

How truly, truly heart­break­ing. Dolly’s fa­ther sug­gested the 14-year-old’s on­line tor­men­tors come to his daugh­ter's fu­neral to wit­ness the con­se­quences of their ac­tions.

This is a story that all teenagers need to know.

Any teenager could be on ei­ther side of the is­sue.

You may not know if your child is be­ing bul­lied – with so­cial me­dia it can be done so sneak­ily.

Equally scary, you never know when your child might be per­pe­trat­ing – their not to­tally-de­vel­oped brain still un­aware of the ir­re­versible and harm­ful ef­fects of it.

It needs to be beaten. One par­ent I know set up a con­tract with their child about their mo­bile phone use be­fore they were al­lowed to have one.

There were guide­lines about tex­ting, so­cial me­dia use, apps and time al­lowed on it.

If they broke any of the rules the phone was re­moved in­def­i­nitely. It might sound over the top – but it is not. We need to find our own sys­tems in our homes that work with our teens. We need to not only be open about the subject and share Dolly’s story but we need to be vig­i­lant about what our teenagers are do­ing.

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