How to build your psychological armour
No one should have to experience online abuse, but the reality is that many LGBTIQ+ people do.
Knowing the most effective ways to respond can help you manage the impacts and build your psychological armour and resilience. The approach you choose will depend on your particular situation and what is best for your emotional wellbeing.
Remember your strengths
Don’t let the opinions of others define your self-worth. Remind yourself of your best qualities and attributes.
Pause and reflect
Online abuse can be overwhelming. Give yourself space and time so that you respond rather than react.
While the situation may seem challenging in the moment, remember to focus on the big picture and your main priorities in life.
Acknowledge your feelings
You’re allowed to be upset. But try not to deplete your emotional strength by defending yourself against every unwarranted attack. Question whether this is worth your time and energy.
Build a supportive network
Surround yourself with supportive people. You don’t need to handle this on your own. Talk with family, friends, peers and mentors who may be best placed to help.
Be kind to yourself
It can be helpful to practice self-care through, exercise, good nutrition, adequate sleep, meditation or other activities you find relaxing.
Create a safe space offline
Go for a walk, catch up with a friend or read a book. Consider turning off notifications at night or during periods when you want to disconnect.
Emotional reactions can feed the trolls. Don’t be afraid to respond to negative comments with a positive attitude. You can set the standard for positive online behaviour by communicating with respect, tolerance and empathy.
Clarify your thoughts and be informed about key issues so that you are better prepared to take part in online discussions.
Be confident and assertive
Don’t be afraid to advocate for your beliefs and opinions online. Stay true to your character and your sense of right and wrong.
Be a good online role model
You can gain a sense of purpose by knowing that you’re contributing to an improved online world that is inclusive of everyone.
Support other people
Help other people when they experience online abuse by safely speaking up or showing other forms of support.
All ages. Counselling and referral for people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, queer and/or intersex. Phone counselling available from 3pm to 12am, every day. Online chat available 3pm to 12am, every day.
All ages. All issues. Phone counselling available all day, every day. Online chat available 7pm to 4am AEST daily.