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Student Research: Bullies More Likely to Have Mental Illnesses

October 26, 2012
Dr. Frances Turcotte-Benedict

Public health graduate student Dr. Frances Turcotte-Benedict recently presented at the national conference of the American Association of Pediatrics. She reported that children with diagnosed mental illness are three times more likely to bully than children without disorders. For a biostatistics class project, Turcotte-Benedict and her co-authors reviewed data on nearly 64,000 children from the 2007 National Survey of Children’s Health. Parents in the survey identified 15.2 percent of children as bullies. Kids with mental illness turned out to be three times more likely to be among that group. Kids with Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD) were six times more likely to be identified as bullies, and those with depression were three times as likely.

Read more about bullying in David Orenstein's article.