Examining the contemporaneous occurrence of bullying and teen dating violence victimization

Katrina J Debnam, Tracy E Waasdorp, Catherine P Bradshaw
School Psychology Quarterly 2016, 31 (1): 76-90
Teen dating violence (TDV) is a preventable public health issue that has been linked to other forms of aggression and violence victimization. It is also a growing concern for school psychologists who may be working to prevent TDV and related behavioral problems, like bullying. The current study examined various forms of bullying victimization (verbal, physical, and relational) and their association with physical and emotional TDV. Self-report data from 17,780 adolescents (33% African American, 54% White) in Grades 9-12 across 58 high schools were analyzed using 3-level models with dichotomous outcomes. Multilevel logistic regressions indicated that adolescents who had experienced bullying (physical, relational, and verbal) were more likely to have also experienced physical and emotional dating violence. Perceived norms about students' and adults' bullying interventions were associated with reduced odds of physical (OR(adults) = .82, p < .001) and emotional TDV (OR(adults) = .82, p < .001). Findings underscore the need to better understand the relationship between TDV and bullying victimization to design and enhance prevention efforts that address both forms of violence.

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