The episode reflects one of many ways that the technology lubricating the social lives of teenagers is amplifying standard adolescent cruelty. No longer confined to school grounds or daytime hours, "cyberbullies" are pursuing their quarries into their own bedrooms. Tools like e-mail messages and Web logs enable the harassment to be both less obvious to adults and more publicly humiliating, as gossip, put-downs and embarrassing pictures are circulated among a wide audience of peers with a few clicks
This article freaked me out a little bit. You see, I was victimized by this sort of behavior in school. I developed early, was intelligent, and generally misunderstood by my peers. Horrible things were said about me by girls at first, then as I developed, the boys started in too. I was so friendly and wanted so much to be liked. It never got easier to have people be so cruel.
Yes, it is definitely one of the reasons I chose to homeschool. It was just beginning in Kindergarten for Reagan and wasn't too bad yet. But I knew it would get worse as he got older. People have told me that I should have left him in school. That kids need to learn how to deal with it. Well, I'm almost 30 and I still don't know how to deal with it. It's not so much what people say, but that they have a desire to hurt you. How can you get used to that? And why should my children? I would never stay in a place that was as hostile as public schools have become.
Now it's turned to the internet. I won't let my kids access the internet in their rooms. All conversations on-line must be in a public part of the house. I want to be able to see what they're typing, and what's being written to them. Hopefully this is just one more thing that we will be avoiding by keeping our kids out of the public school system!