Sexual harassment and emotional and behavioural symptoms in adolescence : stronger associations among boys than girls

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Kaltiala-Heino , R , Frojd , S & Marttunen , M 2016 , ' Sexual harassment and emotional and behavioural symptoms in adolescence : stronger associations among boys than girls ' , Social Psychiatry and Psychiatric Epidemiology , vol. 51 , no. 8 , pp. 1193-1201 . https://doi.org/10.1007/s00127-016-1237-0

Title: Sexual harassment and emotional and behavioural symptoms in adolescence : stronger associations among boys than girls
Author: Kaltiala-Heino, Riittakerttu; Frojd, Sari; Marttunen, Mauri
Contributor: University of Helsinki, Clinicum
Date: 2016-08
Language: eng
Number of pages: 9
Belongs to series: Social Psychiatry and Psychiatric Epidemiology
ISSN: 0933-7954
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10138/224585
Abstract: To study the associations between subjection to sexual harassment and emotional (depression) and behavioural (delinquency) symptoms among 14-to-18-year-old adolescents, and gender differences within these associations. 90,953 boys and 91,746 girls aged 14-18 participated in the School Health Promotion Study (SHPS), a school-based survey designed to examine the health, health behaviours, and school experiences of teenagers. Experiences of sexual harassment were elicited with five questions addressing five separate forms of harassment. Depression was measured by the 13-item Beck Depression Inventory and delinquency with a modified version of the International Self-Report Delinquency Study (ISRD) instrument. Data were analysed using cross-tabulations with Chi-square statistics and logistic regression. All sexual harassment experiences studied were associated with both depression (adjusted odds ratios varied from 2.2 to 2.7 in girls and from 2.0 to 5.1 in boys) and delinquency (adjusted odds ratios 3.1-5.0 in girls and 1.7-6.9 in boys). Sexual name-calling had a stronger association with depression and with delinquency in girls (adjusted odds ratios, respectively, 2.4 and 4.2), than in boys (adjusted odds ratios, respectively, 2.0 and 1.7), but otherwise stronger associations with emotional and behavioural symptoms were seen in boys. Subjection to sexual harassment is associated with both emotional and behavioural symptoms in both girls and boys. The associations are mostly stronger for boys. Boys subjected to sexual harassment may feel particularly threatened regarding their masculinity, and there may be less support available for boys traumatised due to sexual harassment.
Subject: Sexual harassment
Adolescence
Mental health
Delinquency
Depression
BECK DEPRESSION INVENTORY
MIDDLE ADOLESCENCE
GENDER-DIFFERENCES
MENTAL-HEALTH
RISK-FACTORS
SCHOOL
PEER
DELINQUENCY
INSTRUMENT
MOOD
3124 Neurology and psychiatry
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