عزت نفس جهانی و فیزیکی و نارضایتی از بدن به عنوان واسطه ارتباط بین وضعیت وزن و قربانی شدن در یک زورگویی
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی||تعداد کلمات|
|36376||2009||15 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید||6217 کلمه|
Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Journal of Adolescence, Volume 32, Issue 5, October 2009, Pages 1287–1301
Research has found evidence of a link between being overweight or obese and bullying/peer victimisation, and also between obesity and adjustment problems such as low self-esteem and body dissatisfaction. Studies have also found that adjustment problems can put children at an increased risk of being bullied over time. However, to date the factors that place overweight or obese children at risk of being bullied have been poorly elucidated. Self-report data were collected from a sample of 11–14 year olds (N = 376) about their weight status, about their experiences of three different types of bullying (Verbal, Physical and Social), their global self-worth, self-esteem for physical appearance, and body dissatisfaction. Overweight or obese children reported experiencing significantly more verbal and physical (but not social) bullying than their non-overweight peers. Global self-worth, self-esteem for physical appearance and body dissatisfaction each fully mediated the paths between weight status and being a victim of bullying.
Despite attempts to curb the growing prevalence of childhood obesity, rates are still increasing (Jotangia, Moody, Stamatakis, & Wardle, 2005) and the stigmatisation to which obese children are being exposed to is also on the rise (Latner & Stunkard, 2003). One potential factor that may exacerbate the difficulties faced by obese children is social interaction at school and difficulties with peer relationships, particularly bullying. There are numerous definitions of what constitutes bullying and peer victimisation and the two terms are often used interchangeably by researchers. Bullying is commonly defined as a subset of aggressive behavior, characterised by repetition and by an imbalance of power where the victim cannot defend him or herself for one or more reasons (e.g. being outnumbered, smaller, or weaker) (see Smith & Brain, 2000). Peer victimisation has been defined as: “The experience among children of being a target of the aggressive behavior of other children, who are not siblings and not necessarily age-mates” (Hawker & Boulton, 2000, p. 441). Peer victimisation (and peer aggression) is a term more commonly used by researchers in North America. Both peer victimisation and bullying involve repeated aggression; definitions of bullying additionally emphasise the power imbalance, and often, aggressor intent (Hunter, Boyle, & Warden, 2007). Research by Hunter et al. (2007) suggests that the two are qualitatively different experiences for children, with bullying being the more serious form. Bullying (or peer aggression) can be verbal (e.g. name-calling), physical (e.g. being kicked and punched), or indirect (also called ‘relational’ or ‘social'). Indirect bullying is defined as aggression through a third party such that the victim cannot identify the aggressor (e.g. spreading rumors). Relational bullying is defined as behavior which leads to the break up of peer relationships (e.g. social exclusion). Whereas social bullying encompasses both relational and indirect forms and both overt and covert forms, it is viewed in terms of its goal – to do social harm (Underwood, 2003). Recent research suggests that being overweight or obese is a risk factor for bullying and peer victimisation. For example, Griffiths, Wolke, Page, and Horwood (2005) found that obese children were more likely to be overt victims of bullying, compared to average weight children (mean age of sample = 7.5 years). Other cross sectional studies with older children have also found evidence of a link between obesity and peer victimisation (Falkner et al., 2001, Janssen et al., 2004 and Pearce et al., 2002). Using self-reports of height/weight and bullying, Janssen et al. (2004) found that overweight/obesity status was related to peer victimisation in 11–14 year old children, but not for 15–16 year olds. In a similar study, Pearce et al. (2002) found important sex differences, with obese boys more likely to experience overt victimisation and obese girls being more likely to experience relational victimisation compared to their average weight peers. In terms of why certain children seem to be more at risk of being bullied than others, Olweus (1978) found no evidence in support of the ‘difference’ or ‘deviance’ hypothesis (Pearce, 1989 and Phillips, 1989). This proposes that children are bullied because of some external negative deviation (e.g. glasses, obesity, acne, protruding teeth/ears). The only physical difference found between victims and other children was in terms of physical strength. Despite this research, Perry, Hodges, and Egan (2001) have stated that, “it may be premature to rule out a role for extreme physical deviations in chronic victimisation” (p.75) and further proposed that these features may cause children to have low self-esteem, which places them at risk of victimisation, and, at the very least, these features are likely to be a focus of the teasing. Although clinically diagnosed treatment seeking obese children have been shown to report elevated levels of depression and lower self-esteem, in non clinical samples obesity is not always associated with self-esteem or psychological ill health (Wardle & Cooke, 2005). In contrast, obese children have consistently been shown to have lower self-esteem specifically related to their physical appearance ( Falkner et al., 2001) and report higher levels of body dissatisfaction ( Wardle & Cooke, 2005). Thus, there does appear to be partial support for Perry et al's theory, at least for children who are overweight or obese, with self-esteem for physical appearance and body dissatisfaction being more strongly implicated. Links between bullying/peer victimisation and psychosocial adjustment have also been examined; being a victim of bullying has been found to be associated with a range of adjustment problems, including anxiety, depression, low self-esteem and loneliness (Hawker & Boulton, 2000). Egan and Perry (1998), for example, found that victims of peer aggression have lower self-esteem and further suggested that they tend to accept negative actions towards them to a greater degree than individuals with higher self-esteem. Moreover, they communicate their vulnerability to others through their depressive and cautious behaviors. Body dissatisfaction has been examined specifically in relation to ‘teasing’, with studies finding evidence of a link between weight-related teasing in particular, and body dissatisfaction (Eisenberg, Neumark-Sztainer, & Story, 2003). Overweight and obese children who suffer from body dissatisfaction and low self-esteem either globally or related to their appearance may therefore be at a greater risk of being bullied. Certain behavioral characteristics do seem to increase children's vulnerability, for example, those behaviors which mark them out as ‘easy targets’, as well as those behaviors which ‘reward’ and ‘reinforce’ the bully's behavior (Schwartz, Dodge, & Coie, 1993). Numerous longitudinal studies have found that submissive and non-assertive behaviors can increase the risk of being victimised over time (Fox and Boulton, 2006 and Hodges et al., 1999). In summary, various studies have found evidence of a link between obesity and being bullied and between obesity and adjustment problems such as lowered self-esteem. Research has also found that self-esteem and other adjustment problems can put children at an increased risk of being bullied over time. The aims of this study were to establish whether self-esteem and body dissatisfaction mediate the links between being overweight or obese and the experience of being bullied by one's peers. This study also aimed to establish whether there are any gender differences in these relationships and whether certain types of bullying are more strongly implicated. Despite the conceptualisation of peer victimisation and bullying as encompassing different types (verbal, physical, relational and indirect), scores are often collapsed across a scale to yield a composite score. Recent studies that have made use of sub-scale scores have used only two categories, grouping certain verbal and physical forms together as ‘overt’ (or neglecting verbal forms altogether) in contrast with ‘relational’ forms, while neglecting the more indirect types of bullying behavior (e.g. Prinstein, Boergers, & Vernberg, 2001). Such a conceptualisation is overly simplistic and unrepresentative of the full range of bullying experiences; it is important to consider all of these different types of bullying separately since one or two types of bullying may be more salient for obese children than others. It is particularly worth examining the role of verbal bullying, since research has found that this is a common experience for overweight and obese children ( Eisenberg et al., 2003). It was thus hypothesised that being overweight or obese would predict increases in all types of bullying (verbal, physical and social forms) and that these relationships would be mediated by the child's physical and global self-esteem and body dissatisfaction.