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Implications of Inadequate Parental Bonding and Peer Victimization for Adolescent Mental Health

NCJ Number
Journal of Adolescence Volume: 30 Issue: 5 Dated: October 2007 Pages: 801-812
K. Rigby; P.T. Slee; G. Martin
Date Published
October 2007
12 pages
This Australian study examined to what extent, if any, inadequate parenting, as indicated on the Parental Bonding Instrument (PBI), was related to being victimized by peers and associations with poor mental health.
The results confirm previous findings in providing evidence of significant associations between relatively poor mental health and (1) inadequate parental bonding, as reflected by both perceived low parental care and high parental control and (2) high levels of reported peer victimization. In addition, the results indicate that the contributions of the parental bonding and peer victimization to adolescent mental health are largely independent. The general implications of this study confirm those of other studies in suggesting that inadequate parenting and peer victimization constitute risk factors as far as poor mental health are concerned. They extend previous research in providing support for the view that (1) inadequate parenting is unlikely to put children more at risk of being victimized at school and (2) that adolescents (especially girls) are at greatest risk of deteriorating mental health if they experience both inadequate parenting and peer victimization. With previous studies indicting significant associations between relatively poor mental health of children and both perceived negative parenting and exposure to peer victimization at school; this study examined their relative contribution to the mental status of adolescent school children. Questionnaires were administered to 1,432 Australian school children aged 12 to 16 years. Tables, references