‘Mean Boys,’ Not Girls, May Be The Bigger Problem In Schools

Movies about high school tend to promote images of “mean girls” and “queen bees” who hurt their enemies through negative rumors and exclusion. But a recent study suggests that “mean boys” might actually be a more pressing problem.

New research published last month in the scientific journal Aggressive Behavior found that teenage boys tend to hurt peers with emotional warfare more than their female counterparts do — despite the fact that teenage girls are typically seen as the gender more likely to engage in emotional bullying. To glean their results, the researchers surveyed a group of over 600 Georgia teenagers every year between sixth and 12th grade.

The study found that boys were more likely to commit acts of relational aggression -– a type of behavior that involves harming others through the manipulation of peer relationships, such as by spreading rumors or intentionally excluding others.

Pamela Orpinas, a professor at the University of Georgia who led the study, said that the study’s findings were not consistent with previous research, which has generally found that boys and girls tend to engage in equal amounts of relational aggression. But Orpinas found that boys were consistently more likely to exhibit such —> Read More Here


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