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J Adolesc Health. 2017 Aug;61(2):179-186. doi: 10.1016/j.jadohealth.2017.02.002. Epub 2017 Apr 5.

Bullying Victimization and Suicide Ideation and Behavior Among Adolescents in Europe: A 10-Country Study.

Author information

1
Feinberg Child Study Centre, Schneider Children's Medical Centre, Tel Aviv University, Tel Aviv, Israel; Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Edmond and Lily Safra Children's Hospital, Sheba Medical Center, Tel Hashomer, Tel Aviv University, Tel Aviv, Israel.
2
Feinberg Child Study Centre, Schneider Children's Medical Centre, Tel Aviv University, Tel Aviv, Israel; Baruch Ivcher School of Psychology, Interdisciplinary Center (IDC), Herzliya, Israel. Electronic address: bkanat@idc.ac.il.
3
Feinberg Child Study Centre, Schneider Children's Medical Centre, Tel Aviv University, Tel Aviv, Israel.
4
National Centre for Suicide Research and Prevention of Mental Ill-Health (NASP), Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, Sweden.
5
National Centre for Suicide Research and Prevention of Mental Ill-Health (NASP), Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, Sweden; Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, New York State Psychiatric Institute, New York, New York.
6
Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, New York State Psychiatric Institute, New York, New York; Department of Epidemiology, Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University, New York, New York.
7
Department of Health Sciences, University of Molise, Campobasso, Italy; National Institute for Health, Migration and Poverty, Rome, Italy.
8
Vadaskert Child Psychiatry Hospital, Budapest, Hungary; Institute of Psychology Eotvos Lorand University, Budapest, Hungary.
9
Institute of Psychology Eotvos Lorand University, Budapest, Hungary.
10
Clinic of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Centre of Psychosocial Medicine, University of Heidelberg, Heidelberg, Germany.
11
Department of Psychiatry, School of Medicine, Centro de Investigacion Biomedica en Red de Salud Mental, CIBERSAM, University of Oviedo, Oviedo, Spain.
12
Clinical Psychology Department, Iuliu Hatieganu University of Medicine and Pharmacy, Cluj-Napoca, Romania.
13
Research Division for Mental Health, University for Medical Information Technology (UMIT), Hall in Tirol, Austria.
14
Addiction help services B.I.N., Innsbruck, Austria.
15
National Suicide Research Foundation, Cork, Ireland.
16
Department of Psychiatry and Clinical Psychology, Centre Hospitalo-Universitaire (CHU) de Nancy, Universite de Lorraine, Nancy, France.
17
Slovene Center for Suicide Research, UP IAM, University of Primorska, Koper, Slovenia.
18
Estonian-Swedish Mental Health and Suicidology Institute (ERSI), Tallinn, Estonia; School of Governance, Law and Society, Tallinn University, Tallinn, Estonia.
19
Estonian-Swedish Mental Health and Suicidology Institute (ERSI), Tallinn, Estonia; School of Natural Sciences and Health, Tallinn University, Tallinn, Estonia.

Abstract

PURPOSE:

To examine risk and protective factors moderating the associations between three types of bullying victimization (physical, verbal, and relational bullying) with suicide ideation/attempts in a large representative sample of European adolescents.

METHODS:

We analyzed cross-sectional data on 11,110 students (mean age = 14.9, standard deviation = .89) recruited from 168 schools in 10 European Union countries involved in the Saving and Empowering Young Lives in Europe study. A self-report questionnaire was used to measure victimization types, depression, anxiety, parental and peer support, and suicide ideation and attempts. For each outcome, we applied hierarchical nonlinear models controlling for sociodemographics.

RESULTS:

Prevalence of victimization was 9.4% physical, 36.1% verbal, and 33.0% relational. Boys were more likely to be physically and verbally victimized, whereas girls were more prone to relational victimization. Physical victimization was associated with suicide ideation, and relational victimization was associated with suicide attempts. Other associations between victimization and suicidality (ideation/attempts) were identified through analysis of interactions with additional risk and protective factors. Specifically, verbal victimization was associated with suicide ideation among adolescents with depression who perceived low parental support. Similarly, low peer support increased the associations between verbal victimization and suicide ideation. Verbal victimization was associated with suicide attempts among adolescents with anxiety who perceived low parental support.

CONCLUSIONS:

Findings support the development of prevention strategies for adolescent victims of bullying who may be at elevated risk for suicide ideation/behavior, by taking into account gender, the type of bullying, symptomatology, and availability of interpersonal support.

KEYWORDS:

Adolescence; Bullying; Ideation; SEYLE; Suicide; Suicide attempt; Victimization

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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