Bullying Behaviors and Attachment Styles - Bullying Essay Example

Bullying Behaviors and Attachment Styles Brandon McKay Prince George’s Community College Abstract The article is titled Bullying Behaviors and Attachment Styles - Bullying Behaviors and Attachment Styles introduction. This article studies in detail how a child’s attachment to their parents can have an effect on their relationship wit their peers. The discussions of physical and relational abrasion are coincided with the differences between boy and girl victimization. The correlation between parental anxiety and or avoidance and the engagement in bullying is also researched.

To sum it up this article will sow wetter or not the attachment a child as with one or both of their parents as an effect on their behavior towards bullying. Bullying Behaviors and Attachment Styles The purpose of the study was to determine whether there are links among attachment styles, bullying and victimization. Bullying is typically defined as repeated relational or physical aggression directed to one or more peers. Parental involvement, parental divorce, and parental stress have been shown to predict aggressive behavior in children and adolescents.


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Participation in bullying was expected to relate to their avoidance for attachment to ones parents. Previous studies have found that individuals who are insecure-avoidant in attachment are more likely to show signs of antisocial traits, as well as less likely to form close relationships with others. Those with secure patterns of attachment have shown more optimistic attributes towards judgments of others and better problem solving skills in resolving personal conflict and lower levels of aggression.

With this information, it was hypothesized that those who were secure or insecure-ambivalent in attachment to mother would show lower rates of bullying compared to insecure-avoidant individuals. Children who were insecure-ambivalent in attachment to their mother were expected to show higher rates of victimization compared to those who were secure or insecure-avoidant individuals. The participants of this study were a convenience sample of 144 undergraduate Introduction to Psychology students from a rural, southeastern university which included 58 men and 86 women.

The average age was 19. 46 years. In addition 67 percent of the participants’ parents were married, 18 percent were divorced, 10 percent were never married, 3 percent were cohabitating, and 1 percent was widowed at the time of this study. Seventeen percent of participants reported having no father figure within their households, while only one percent reported having no mother figure. A slightly modified version of the ECR-R (Experience in Close Relationships) questionnaire (Fraley, Waller, & Brennan, 2001) was used to measure childhood parental attachments.

This scale is divided into two separate subscales to measure both avoidance and anxiety with regard to attachment. Participants rated the items on a 7-point Likert-type scale ranging from 1 = strongly disagree to 7= strongly agree. Participants completed the questionnaires in small groups of no more than 15. The order of the surveys was randomized and lasted 30 minutes. Participation in bullying was expected to relate to higher avoidance scores for attachment to one’s parents. In the present study, bullying was divided into two subtypes of aggression: physical and relational.

Physical aggression was not correlated with higher avoidance scores to the mother. However, relational aggression was correlated with higher avoidance scores for attachment to the father, but not the mother. Victimization was expected to correlate with parent-child relationships. Victimization was found to correlate with higher rates of anxiety to the mother, higher rates of avoidance to the father. An examination of these analyses revealed a significant interaction between levels of attachment anxiety to the mother and attachment avoidance to the mother for physical aggression.

My Personal Critique This article was quite well written. The writers did well involving the numerical facts along with the writing. The writers also successfully describing as well as differentiating physical and relational aggression with bullying and victimization. This article may have been too detailed and somewhat hard to completely understand at times. The study’s copy or improvement of the ECR survey served them well in their findings. In conclusion, this study does show the correlation between bullying and the security with the child’s mother and or father.

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