ERIC Number: EJ680424
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2004-Aug-1
Psychiatric Distress and Symptoms of PTSD among Victims of Bullying at Work
Matthiesen, Stig Berge; Einarsen, Stale
British Journal of Guidance and Counselling, v32 n3 p335-356 Aug 2004
Distress and symptoms of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) were investigated among targets of experienced bullying at work, that is, the exposure to persistent or recurrent oppressive, offensive, abusive behaviour where the aggressor may be a superior or a colleague. The participants in the present study were all recruited from two associations of bullied victims (n=102, response rate=57%). A high level of distress and symptoms of PTSD was revealed in the sample, both according to recommended cut point scores for HSCL-25, PTSS-10 and IES-R, and when comparing the sample with traumatised samples. Three out of four victims reported an HSCL-25 level higher than the recommended threshold for psychiatric disease. Sixty and 63% of the sample reported a high level of IES intrusion and IES avoidance, correspondingly. The level of bullying, operationalised as the frequency of negative acts the individual had been exposed to at work, showed a stronger interconnection with distress and PTSD than a more unspecified, subjective measure of bullying, as well as the time since the bullying took place and the duration of the bullying episode. Those still being pestered reported a higher level of distress and PTSD than victims in which the bullying episodes were terminated more than 1 year ago, but the findings were somewhat mixed. Positive affectivity (PA) and especially negative affectivity (NA) contributed significantly to the explained variance of distress and PTSD in various regression analysis models, but did not interact with measures of bullying. Nor were mediator effects found between bullying, PA/NA and traumatic stress reactions. Implications of the findings are discussed.
Descriptors: Antisocial Behavior, Bullying, Posttraumatic Stress Disorder, Foreign Countries, Work Environment, Supervisor Supervisee Relationship
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
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