Abstract

The purpose of the present study is to assess how aggression, relational aggression, and sociometric status relate to the quality and authenticity of children's friendships. Relations between aggression, relational aggression, and sociometric status as well as between friendship quality and friendship authenticity were also explored. 136 fourth and fifth grade children (69 boys, 67 girls) completed several measures, including a sociometric measure, the aggression section of the Pupil Evaluation Inventory with a few items measuring relational aggression inserted, the Friendship Quality Questionnaire, and a questionnaire assessing friendship authenticity. Children's peer rated levels of aggression and their sociometric status did not contribute to the quality of their friendships. Consistent with past research, children who were rated high in aggression were also rated high in relational aggression and were also less liked by their peers. Strong sex differences were found when correlating aggression, relational aggression, sociometric status, and friendship quality with the authenticity of children's friendships. Girls, not boys, who's best friendships were rated high in authenticity were more accepted by their peers and were rated lower in aggression than those girls with unauthentic best friendships. For boys, friendship authenticity positively correlated with friendship quality. Implications for assessing friendship authenticity are discussed.

Disciplines

Psychology

Included in

Psychology Commons

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