Date of Publication

4-10-2013

Degree Type

Honors Thesis

Department

Nursing

First Advisor

Patricia Sharkey, Assistant Professor, Nursing

Abstract

Historically, bullying has always been a problem. In today’s society it has become an even larger issue. The consequences of bullying reach way beyond the act itself. More active steps need to be taken to prevent the needless suffering involved in bullying. This paper will discuss the broad definition of bullying, as well as the specific components involved in an acute bullying situation. The various types of bullying and victimization prevalent in today’s society will also be examined. The psychological characteristics of bullies, victims, and bully-victims will be discussed, specifically common traits, behaviors, and disorders that contribute to their actions. Contributing factors of the bullying phenomenon will be examined, including both internal and external factors. The long lasting effects of bullying on both the bully and the victim will be discussed. This includes increased criminality, substance abuse, and psychopathology in the bully, and increased mental health implications, depression, and suicidal ideation in the victim. In order to combat bullying, a variety of interventions have been examined and discussed in this paper. Prevention programs targeting schools, homes, and individuals are discussed to diminish bullying and increase awareness. Also federal and legal actions that have been put into place will be discussed. Increasing awareness and understanding through prevention programs, as well as creating intervention programs to stop the issue after its begun, is key to combating the current level of bullying in society.

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