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Research from the USA has found that the impact of experiencing bullying as a child can have effects reaching into early adulthood. The study of 480 undergraduate students measured exposure to various traumatic experiences, such as bullying, cyberbullying, robbery, sexual assault and violence from birth to 17. Experiencing bullying as a child was the strongest predictor in the study of students reporting symptoms of PTSD. Females who had experienced bullying reported significantly higher levels of depression, anxiety and PTSD than males. There was found to be a correlation between experiencing inter-personal trauma as a child or young adult and the risk of victimisation as an adult. Educational psychologist Dorothy Espelage, who led the study at the University of Illinois, said “Bullying victimization significantly predicted students’ current levels of depression and anxiety — over and above other childhood victimization experiences.”

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