Long-term Consequences of Childhood Bullying in Adults who Stutter: Social Anxiety, Fear of Negative Evaluation, Self-esteem, and Satisfaction with Life

Gordon W. Blood, Ingrid M. Blood

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations

Abstract

Purpose: Psychosocial disorders have been reported in adults who stutter, especially social anxiety disorder. Social anxiety has been linked to childhood victimization. It is possible that recalled childhood victimization could be linked to psychosocial problems reported in some adults who stutter. Method: Participants were 36 adults who stutter and 36 adults who do not stutter (mean age = 21.9 years). The Retrospective Bullying Questionnaire was completed for primary school, secondary school and university environments for physical, verbal, relational and cyber bullying. Participants were categorized into one of five groups (bully, victim, bully-victim, bystander and uninvolved) based ontheir responses. Participants completed four psychosocial scales: social interaction anxiety, fear of negative evaluation, self-esteem and satisfaction with life scales. Results: The two groups differed with adults who stutter having higher social interaction anxiety, fear of negative evaluation and satisfaction with life. Analyses of variance revealed that victims had the highest scores among both groups on all four scales. Conclusion: Adults who recalled being victimized during childhood were more likely, regardless of whether they stutter or did not stutter, to have poorer psychosocial scale scores. These results show the lingering effects of childhood victimization, common in some children who stutter, may contribute to the reported psychosocial problems in adulthood. The need for early intervention for children who are bullied and future research with larger samples is warranted.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)72-84
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Fluency Disorders
Volume50
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1 2016

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Language and Linguistics
  • Linguistics and Language
  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Speech and Hearing
  • LPN and LVN

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