Windy City Media Group Frontpage News
Celebrating 30 Years of Gay Lesbian Bisexual and Trans News
home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2015-11-25
About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage



Study: Bullying decreases over time
by Margo Anderson

facebook twitter pin it stumble upon digg google +1 reddit email

A recent study in Pediatrics has found that bullying of LGB youth really does decrease over time.

More than 4,000 English teens were interviewed annually from 2004 to 2010. One hundred eighty-seven of these teens identified themselves as LGB. Fifty-seven percent of lesbian and bisexual girls and 52 percent of gay and bisexual boys reported being bullied at ages 13-14. However, by the ages of 19-20, only 6 percent of lesbian and bisexual girls and 9 percent of gay and bisexual boys reported that they were being bullied.

However, when considered relative to their heterosexual peers, the findings are more complex. At the ages of 13-14, LGB boys and girls were twice as likely as heterosexual boys and girls to be bullied. But by the ages of 19-20, lesbian and bisexual girls were only as likely while gay and bisexual boys were four times as likely to be bullied. That is, bullying gets comparatively better for girls but comparatively worse for boys.

Study co-researcher Joseph Robinson told Windy City Times, "Our research provides strong evidence that it gets better, and yet, there is still room for improvement."

Although this study was conducted in England, Robinson said, "It's highly probable that we would see similar patterns in the U.S. Our hypothesis about the different trends among males and females was based on prior research (mainly conducted in the US)."

Shannon Sullivan of the Illinois Safe Schools Alliance told Windy City Times, "We've long known that bullying in general [in the United States] peaks during the middle school years and tends to lessen as students get older." Thus, there is reason to believe that these results do generalize to the United States.

These results may reflect not only a change in bullying due to age but also a change due to societal increases in acceptance of LGB individuals and less of a social acceptance of bullying. As Robinson notes, there is no way to disentangle these effects; however, he does say that "since 2010 (the last year of this study), the 'It Gets Better' project has started, same-sex marriage has become legal in several additional states, and the gay rights movement has picked up additional momentum. So I would expect to see more of an effect of the gay-rights movement on anti-gay bullying after 2010."

It is also true that many teens have not yet fully discovered their sexuality or may not feel comfortable identifying as LGB publicly, even if they would do so privately. This can introduce "noise" into the study, making it more difficult to obtain clear results. To reduce this problem, participants were only interviewed about LGB status in the last two years of the study. That is, 57 percent of girls and 52 percent of boys who later identified as LGB were bullied at age 13-14, before they had identified as such. Said Robinson, "By asking about LGB identification at later waves, the [survey] avoids some of the challenges regarding the truthfulness of responses to LGB identification questions posed of younger children ... but, of course, it doesn't quite capture identification during high school." However, as Robinson points out, "There were significant differences ... and it is certainly interesting ... that LGB identification after high school is a significant predictor of bullying during high school."

The study also stated that peer victimization is associated with suicide attempts, anxiety, psychotic symptoms and sexual risk. The authors found that higher levels of victimization explained about half of the emotional distress in LGB youth. As Robinson notes in the article, "We find that bullying during high school is related to emotional distress during young adulthood, which suggests we should focus on reducing bullying early on because these experiences during high school can have lasting consequences."

And Sullivan mentioned that it is "very important to ensure bullying prevention work inclusive of sexual orientation and gender identity is done in the K-8 years. ... School personnel need to be given the tools to intervene in the language and prevent it from happening again."

Sullivan also noted that "providing quality professional development to school personnel on addressing sexual orientation and gender identity, ensuring all school/district policies protect based on sexual orientation and gender identity and the school community knows about those policies, and having a gay-straight alliance or similar club in the school all contribute to a more positive school climate.

"There is also a bit of new research showing that curricular inclusion of sexual orientation and gender identity topics in schools also contributes to a more positive school climate."

Robinson said he is hopeful: "I think the gay-rights movement will have an impact on reducing the magnitude of the LGB—straight bullying disparity—but only time will tell."

The full study can be accessed at .

facebook twitter pin it stumble upon digg google +1 reddit email

Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


Wis. school cancels book after anti-gay group's possible suit 2015-11-25
Legacy Wall Traveling LGBT History Exhibit part of Youth Summit 2015-11-25
Chicago sex ed gets makeover; youth launch 'Chicago Wears Condoms' campaign 2015-11-25
Berwyn school district offering pro-trans policies, outreach 2015-11-25
Northwestern professor on the making of LGBTQ history 2015-11-25
Briefs: PrEP study; Point opens applications; Social workers to be honored 2015-11-25
A'ville shopping; Hilarity Davenport's; Oy to the World; youth talk; Transfluent 2015-11-25
The Chicago Youth Worker Collective hosts 'Friendsgiving' 2015-11-23
Hundreds attend Sleep Out for youth homelessness visibility, fundraising 2015-11-22
Theatre School at DePaul U names award winners 2015-11-18
Tiny Home Competition to launch in Chicago 2015-11-17
Safe Schools Alliance holds youth conference 2015-11-17
Speakers, performers announced for Sleep Out Nov. 20 2015-11-17
Tiny Homes Competition launches in Chicago 2015-11-17
ViiV Healthcare awards grants for HIV programs focused on MSM youth 2015-11-12
Report: Utah judge orders child removed from home of same-sex parents 2015-11-11
Sleep Out kick-off attracts top musical talent 2015-11-11
Task Force lauds Missouri students' courage, racial justice campaign 2015-11-10
Chicago homeless, advocates confront Ald. Cappleman 2015-11-10
Law-school event looks at Obergefell 2015-11-10
Ka'Riel Gaiter talks new role at YEPP, social-justice activism 2015-11-10
Project Fierce celebrates new home at annual brunch 2015-11-09
Producer creates Exposure for Chicago's youth experiencing homelessness 2015-11-08
GUEST COLUMN: Sleeping out for youth 2015-11-04
Experts address homelessness among LGBT youth 2015-11-03
Upcoming: Trans Day of Remembrance; Alliance youth summit; Midwest Equality summit 2015-11-03
Youth, faith leaders, county commissioners call for funding for violence prevention 2015-11-03
U.S. Dept. of Ed.: Palatine school district violated Title IX on trans access 2015-11-03
Lambda Legal joins brief for U. of Texas using race for admissions diversity 2015-11-02
HRC hosts leadership summit for Historically Black Colleges and Universities 2015-10-29
Obama administration files brief supporting trans student challenging school 2015-10-29
HRC Foundation, Partnership for Drug-Free Kids join against LGBTQ teen substance abuse 2015-10-28
Northalsted Business Alliance's Ruby Red Relay to benefit AIDS Fdn, Out in Open Sleep Out 2015-10-28
Teach for America hosts Midwest LGBTQ Education Summit in Chicago 2015-10-25
Leadership of Black Youth Project 100 arrested at protest of police convention 2015-10-24
Black Youth Project Chicago to announce call for end to police violence 2015-10-21
Upcoming: Uyvari memorial; HBHC's Halloween; youth homelessness talk 2015-10-20
Launch party held for LGBT history book for kids 2015-10-19
Palatine school board segregates transgender student 2015-10-16
SAMHSA: Conversion therapy not appropriate for minors 2015-10-15

Copyright © 2015 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.








About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage

About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Post an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group produces Windy City Queercast, & publishes Windy City Times,
The Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community,
Nightspots, Out! Resource Guide, and Identity.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.