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Troll Free Day- March 18

Troll Free Day- March 18

When I sat down to write a blog on my personal experience with trolls and online bullying, the saddest part has been the realization that I personally experience and face online trolling on an everyday basis.

This is my life. For a lot of people, the easy approach is simple- “Log off then.”

For me, a huge part of my business is based online, it is my way to connect with so many women worldwide and be able to help them achieve their health & fitness goals. This is the big positive of social media and the online community it has in turn created, however the negative impacts of the online world is something I personally want to bring awareness to.

 

“You stupid woman, you are killing your baby. I hope they are born deformed. That will be your karma”

 

“Wow, you wear that to workout in? You deserve to be raped”

 

“Lol- lucky you have a good body because your face is gross”

 

“Revolting. You look like a man”

 

These are just a few statements I have received.

 

When was the last time someone said something that really hurt you, that was considered abuse? For me, that was 10 minutes ago and most likely will occur again before the day is over. Most days, I am able to brush it off with a very straight forward ‘delete, ban, block’ approach- other days are not quite as easy.

 

The thing is about social media is that people don’t have a sense of reality or a connection to the online account they are writing on as being a real person. If you look at any celebrity or person in the spotlights account I can almost guarantee that the comments will disgust you.

Unfortunately, this is not limited or restricted to celebrities and those in the spotlight. This could be happening your children in the near future- make a stand today.

 

Whilst pregnant with the twins I had days where I shut down my social media accounts; which to some people may seem like not a big deal, but when your business is reliant on the online platforms, it can have a huge impact! You wouldn’t tell someone to quit their job without a second thought- this is the same for me.

 

Trolling has varying degrees, some extreme- think death threats, suicidal taunts and other malicious comments based on your life. Then you have the everyday trolling.

When did it become acceptable to tell someone to jump off a cliff, or that their unborn baby would be born deformed, or that someone may look ‘like a man/revolting’ and many other expletives that too many people have to deal with on a daily basis. If you were to say these things to someone’s face it would be considered abuse, however when said online there is very little to no repercussions. There is very little laws surrounding online trolling, and if there is- in my first hand experience- they are certainly not well enforced.

 

Whilst pregnant with the twins, the trolling I received online was certainly the most publicized- however there have been (unfortunately) many darker days prior to these- from my images being taken and used to harbour a false identity online, to fake accounts being made purely for the purpose of abusing me to the everyday abuse I have learnt to call ‘my normal’ trolling.

 

But, at what point did this become and acceptable way to go about my day? When did I stop caring that regularly get told to self harm?

Now, I have become so immune to the constant trolling, that the words have lost effect- I simply delete & block. A process that is now far too familiar in my world.

 

Trolling has seen many lives taken- from public figures such as Charlotte Dawson, as well as those who are not in the spot light, to the younger generation, I would love you to watch a video of young Olivia, who ended her life at the age of just 14- watch her video and story here: (and have the tissues ready!)

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RzjFf8ywk3c

Can you imagine the world our children will grow up in and consider ‘normal’?

Why and when did it become acceptable to troll? 

 

Please join me, and many others who want to take a stand against online bullying and trolling- by logging off social media this Friday, March 18th in support of TROLL FREE DAY.

  

 

Sophie 

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