Online Bullying is a Problem That's Only Getting Worse in the U.S.
"SEATTLE, Washington — Rachel Whalen remembers feeling gutted in high school when a former friend would cyberbully her. The friend would mock her online postings and threaten to unfollow or unfriend her on social media. She would also post inside jokes about her to others online.
The cyberbullying was so distressing that Whalen said she considered suicide.
Suicide is when a person ends his or her own life. Experts say that often mental illness is what leads to suicide.
Mental illnesses are serious conditions that are different than feeling sad. Feeling sad, lonely or unhappy sometimes is normal and is usually related to what is happening in your life. Mental illness, on the other hand, refers to disorders that affect someone's mood, thoughts and behavior. Anxiety and depression are examples of mental illnesses. Most mental illnesses can be treated by doctors. They can also be treated with medication.
Once Whalen got help, she decided to limit her time on social media. It helps to take a break from it for perspective, said Whalen, now a 19-year-old college student in Utah.
There's a rise in cyberbullying nationwide. Three times as many girls report being harassed online or by text message than boys. That's according to the National Center for Education Statistics, which is part of the U.S. Department of Education."
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