Best Friendships, Group Relationships, and Antisocial Behavior in Early Adolescence.
Correlations between adolescents' own antisocial behavior and adolescents' perceptions of the antisocial behavior of their best friends and friendship groups were examined in this study. The strength of those correlations was expected to vary as a function of the qualities of the dyadic friendships and group relationships. Perceptions of peers' antisocial behavior and dyadic friendship and group relationship qualities were collected through interviews with 431, 12- through 13-year-old adolescents. Measures of adolescents' concurrent and subsequent antisocial behaviors were obtained from the adolescents and their teachers. Adolescents who perceived their friends and groups as participating in antisocial behavior had higher self-reported and teacher-reported antisocial behavior ratings. Perceptions of best friend antisocial behavior were correlated more strongly with adolescents' own concurrent, but not subsequent, antisocial behavior when high levels of help, companionship, and security characterized dyadic friendships. The results are discussed in terms of peer influence and friendship selection processes.
Laird, RD; Pettit, GS; Dodge, KA; Bates, JE
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