Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

New Research Dispels Popular Myth That A Bully's Words Will Never Hurt You

Date:
April 17, 2003
Source:
University Of Warwick
Summary:
Research by Dr. Stephen Joseph a psychologist at the University of Warwick into bullying at Secondary Schools dispels the well-known saying "Sticks and stones will break my bones, but words will never hurt me".

Research by Dr. Stephen Joseph a psychologist at the University of Warwick into bullying at Secondary Schools dispels the well-known saying "Sticks and stones will break my bones, but words will never hurt me".

Related Articles


Contrary to popular belief the study reveals that verbal-victimisation has a particular impact on the victim's feeling of self-worth, and that name-calling can significantly reduce self-esteem. In fact, verbal abuse can have more impact upon victims' self-worth than physical attacks, such as punching, or attacks on property, such as stealing or the destruction of belongings.

The study into bullying and posttraumatic stress in adolescents assessed 331 school pupils in England and reveals that as many as 40% were bullied at some time during their schooling. It suggests that one third of bullied children may suffer from clinically significant levels of posttraumatic stress – so rather than helping to toughen up school pupils, bullying could seriously affect their mental health.

The research paper entitled "Peer- victimisation and posttraumatic stress in adolescents" examines the levels of posttraumatic stress experienced and the impact of bullying on the self-worth on victims. Bullying is stressful and can affect adolescents both emotionally and physically, and the results indicate that different forms of abuse have distinct effects on victims.

To analyse the effects of different types of aggression a "Victim Scale" was used to assess the experience of physical victimisation, verbal victimisation, social manipulation and attacks on property. All types of bullying result in lower self-esteem, but social manipulation, such as excluding the victim from taking part in games, is more likely to lead to posttraumatic stress, and verbal taunts typically lead to lower self-worth.

The study also suggests that verbal bullying or social manipulation can lead to victims feeling helpless and that they lack control over their own feelings and actions. Those who feel that power and control lie with the bully, rather than internally, are much more likely to suffer from posttraumatic stress or lower self-worth.

Dr. Stephen Joseph, from the University of Warwick, said: "This study reveals that bullying and particularly name calling can be degrading for adolescents. Posttraumatic stress is an anxiety disorder that can develop after exposure to a frightening event or ordeal in which physical harm occurred or was threatened, and research clearly suggests that it can be caused by bullying. It is important that peer victimisation is taken seriously as symptoms such as insomnia, anxiety and depression are common amongst victims and have a negative impact on psychological health."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University Of Warwick. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University Of Warwick. "New Research Dispels Popular Myth That A Bully's Words Will Never Hurt You." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 17 April 2003. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2003/04/030417080610.htm>.
University Of Warwick. (2003, April 17). New Research Dispels Popular Myth That A Bully's Words Will Never Hurt You. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2003/04/030417080610.htm
University Of Warwick. "New Research Dispels Popular Myth That A Bully's Words Will Never Hurt You." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2003/04/030417080610.htm (accessed October 23, 2014).

Share This



More Mind & Brain News

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Academic Scandal Shocks UNC

Academic Scandal Shocks UNC

AP (Oct. 23, 2014) A scandal involving bogus classes and inflated grades at the University of North Carolina was bigger than previously reported, a new investigation found. (Oct. 23) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Working Mother Getaway: Beaches Turks & Caicos

Working Mother Getaway: Beaches Turks & Caicos

Working Mother (Oct. 22, 2014) Feast your eyes on this gorgeous family-friendly resort. Video provided by Working Mother
Powered by NewsLook.com
What Your Favorite Color Says About You

What Your Favorite Color Says About You

Buzz60 (Oct. 22, 2014) We all have one color we love to wear, and believe it or not, your color preference may reveal some of your character traits. In celebration of National Color Day, Krystin Goodwin (@kyrstingoodwin) highlights what your favorite colors may say about you. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
First-Of-Its-Kind Treatment Gives Man Ability To Walk Again

First-Of-Its-Kind Treatment Gives Man Ability To Walk Again

Newsy (Oct. 21, 2014) A medical team has for the first time given a man the ability to walk again after transplanting cells from his brain onto his severed spinal cord. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins