Impact of Physical and Relational Victimization on Self-Cognitions in Children and Adolescents
Sinclair, Keneisha Rachelle
Prospective relations of physical and relational peer victimization to positive and negative self-cognitions were examined in a one-year, two-wave longitudinal study. Self-reports of cognitions and both peer nomination and self-report measures of peer victimization experiences were obtained from 478 children and young adolescents (grades 3 through 6 at the beginning of the study). Results revealed: (a) peer victimization predicted increases in negative self-cognitions and decreases in positive self-cognitions over time; (b) relational victimization was more consistently related to changes in self-cognitions than was physical victimization; (c) the prospective relation between victimization and self-cognitions was stronger for boys than for girls; (d) girls reported more willingness to seek adult support following a victimization experience than did boys; and (e) when the overlap between relational and physical TPV was statistically controlled, girls experienced more relational TPV than did boys, and boys experienced more physical TPV than did girls. Implications for practice, policy, and research are discussed.