Have the conversation to end bullying this Do It For Dolly Day.
With recent research revealing half of young people have experienced hurtful or nasty online behaviour, it’s important for families to have open conversations to build trust and end bullying.
Do It For Dolly Day was established by Northern Territory parents, Kate and Tick Everett after their 14-year-old daughter Dolly took her own life following sustained and ongoing bullying and online bullying.
They founded Dolly’s Dream which aims to create a kinder, safer world and works to change the culture of bullying through education and direct support to young people and families.
Kate, Tick and Dolly’s sister Meg are calling on families to start the conversation with their young ones.
“No one deserves to be bullied,” Kate said.
“We know that only about half of teens who have been bullied online tell their parents about it. We also know one in 10 young people have been the target of hate speech.
“Some teens hide their experiences of online bullying so well that their families have no idea anything is wrong. This Do it For Dolly Day, we’re calling on parents and carers to have the conversation with your child to end bullying.”
Psychologist and Dolly’s Dream advisory board member Dr Charlotte Keating said talking in a calm, controlled way helps young people know it’s not their fault if they’re being bullied. It also lets them know how you feel about bullying, and how you would respond if they came to you for support.
“These are not once-off conversations. As young people grow, social experiences become more complex, and bullying can become more sophisticated,” Dr Keating said.
“The more we are prepared to have open, curious conversations with young people about bullying: what their beliefs about bullying are and its impacts, what they would do if faced with a bullying situation, how they would want to deal with it – the greater the chance we will have to help them build resilience and skills to cope with it, including seeking your support.
Meanwhile Tick has urged everyone to say yes to kindness and no to bullying.
“We can all show compassion, tolerance, respect and sensitivity towards other people. When we feel empathy, we are less likely to bully others,” Tick said.
“All funds raised from Do it for Dolly Day go towards creating a kinder community by changing the cultures and behaviours around bullying. This includes supporting our online safety and anti-bullying workshops for students, parents and teachers.”
To learn more about Do It For Dolly Day, visit dollysdream.org.au