Don’t be encouraged by online perpetration

Sagarika Shah, Co-founder, Psychologist and Relationship Therapist, Thought Counsel is here to share her insights on mental wellness and relationships.

The internet has transformed the world. The feeling of having all the information at your finger tips is second to none.

As much as social media is an effective way to grow and learn, personally and professionally,  it is an awful way to get exposed to strangers who can stalk you and bother you, often leading to an unpleasant internet discourse. Online harassment is a very common problem plaguing people across the globe. Celebrities fall prey to intent provoking every now and then. But there are common people, who are not exempted from such inflammatory, extraneous and digressive responses which often take the form of cheap and derogatory remarks.

Individuals who subject people to cyber bullying understand what hurts people. Two very big aspects of their personalities demonstrate narcissism and sadism. A lack of empathy and a need for admiration drives people to narcissistic behaviours. Sadism is a term used for someone who derives pleasure by humiliating or hurting others. Their traits are designed to make people a victim of emotional suffering. Such people deliberately act to irk people with their unsolicited and sometimes cheap comments. It often reflects their perversion.

Loneliness coupled with aggression seem to be another reason why people resort to this kind of behaviour. Its as if they use the internet to vent their frustrations in maladaptive ways. Men are intrinsically more prone to subjecting people to such harassment than women.

How do you deal with such online offenders? The first rule of thumb is to never ever respond to such people or their remarks. Nip it in the bud from day one. responding to them would be akin to feeding their ego or encouraging them to multiply their perpetration. The moment such perpetrators realize their plan is not succeeding in fulfilling their motive, they will be discouraged.

Such people should never discourage you to stop your presence on the internet. You can probably take a technology break if you feel overwhelmed or intimidated. But you also need to realise that for every person troubling you online, there are many more kind-hearted people too. Talking to someone you trust always helps in such a situation. So, do not shy away from sharing your thoughts and feelings. And always remember, its not your fault and you do not deserve this. Do not let it define you let it diminish your worth. It’s not worth it.