Wed, Jan 07, 2015 - Page 3 News List

Bullying causes trauma in adults

By Stacy Hsu  /  Staff reporter

While childhood traumas caused by non-physical bullying often haunts the victims into adulthood, people who have fallen victim to online bullying tend to be discouraged from using the Internet and end up having a more psychologically healthy life, according to a research released by the National Taiwan University College of Public Health yesterday.

The research reached the conclusion based on a survey it conducted among 1,439 college students, of whom 45.7 percent said they had suffered bullying at some point in their lives.

The majority, or 33.9 percent, of the respondents said they fell victim to verbal bullying, followed by relational bullying at 23.4 percent, physical abuse at 11.7 percent and cyberbullying at 7.2 percent.

About 47 percent of the verbal bullying victims experienced minor depression later in their lives, compared with 39 percent of the respondents who had been subjected to relational bullying, the study said.

College of Public Health research assistant Chen Yu-ying (陳昱穎), the first author of the research, said people may experience intensified trauma if they have suffered both verbal and relational bullying.

“Because of their experiences, such people may grow up being afflicted with poor social relations and low quality of life. They should be categorized as needing care and be offered psychological counseling as soon as possible,” Chen said.

Nevertheless, the study found that cyberbullying might have a somewhat positive impact on its sufferers, as most of those polled who had fallen prey to the relatively new form of bullying before or during college ended up with better mental health and living quality.

“This could have been because the online bullying victims decided to stay away from the Internet due to their traumatic experiences, and went on to embrace the outdoors and their lives instead,” Chen said.

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