Bullying: a stepping stone to dating aggression?

Wendy L. Josephson 1  and Debra Pepler 2
  • 1 Department of Psychology, University of Winnipeg, Winnipeg, Canada
  • 2 Department of Psychology, York University and the Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, Canada

Abstract

Bullying is the use of power and aggression to control and distress another. In this paper, we review research to explore whether the lessons learned in bullying provide a stepping stone to aggressive behavior in dating relationships. We start by considering definitions and a relationship framework with which to understand both bullying and dating aggression. We consider bullying from a developmental-contextual perspective and consider risk factors associated with the typical developmental patterns for bullying and dating aggression, including developmental and sociodemographic, individual attributes, and family, peer group, community, and societal relationship contexts that might lead some children and youths to follow developmental pathways that lead to bullying and dating aggression. We conclude by discussing implications for intervention with a review of evidence-based interventions.

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