Adolescents’ Disclosure and Secrecy About Peer Behavior: Links with Cyber Aggression, Relational Aggression, and Overt Aggression

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The current study examines links between parent–adolescent relationship characteristics, friendship risk, and adolescent aggressive behavior. Adolescents (N = 110; M age = 17.05 years) were surveyed about their aggressive behavior (including cyber, relational, and overt) and the extent to which they disclosed aspects about their social lives (online and offline) to their parents. Participants also reported on the extent to which they hid or concealed components of their online and offline social lives from their parents, and about their exposure to a risky friendship context. Results indicate that high amounts of adolescent secrecy coupled with either (1) cyber aggressive friends, or (2) high levels of unsupervised socializing, increases adolescents’ risk for cyber aggression. Interactions between the parenting and peer contexts were also found with regard to relationally aggressive behavior. Implications of these results are discussed in the context of the parent–adolescent relationship.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1430-1440
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Child and Family Studies
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2016



  • Adolescent development
  • Cyber aggression
  • Parent–adolescent information sharing

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