Layba - #YouWouldntSayItToTheirFace

Trigger warning: Discusses themes of cyberbullying.

Can you tell us a bit about yourself?

I'm a Year 12 student in Auckland and part of the Netsafe YAS team. 

Can you tell us about your experience with Cyberbullying? 

Coming to New Zealand from abroad, I didn’t have many friends. While I was very lucky to be welcomed by such supportive teachers, unfortunately, there were some students in my class who began to pick on me through social media. There were mean group chats, anonymous texts etc.

How did you deal with these feelings?

At first I struggled because I didn’t know many people or where to get help. I felt incredibly isolated for a month or so. The biggest issue was that I didn’t have a support system, so that’s what I seeked out. I began to put myself out there and I also reached out to Netsafe who took a more professional approach to the situation and guided me on how to block out the negative messages I was receiving.

What would your message be to those who are being cyberbullied?

I think I’d say don’t be afraid to ask for help. Even though it can be hard, ask for support and trust the people that are there to help you.

Voices of Hope wants you to know that you do not have to do this alone. Click here to ‘find help’ - it’s not weak to speak