The aim has been to investigate the link between body image and peer group relationships.
The early teens can therefore be regarded as a high risk period for acquiring a negative body image. The children who weighed the most at 10 years old were particularly dissatisfied with their appearance. Furthermore, overweight children, primarily girls, were bullied and teased about their appearance considerably more often than the other children in the study.
- Overweight children who are bullied can therefore be said to bear a double burden, which means that they are in the risk zone in terms of developing a negative body image.
- As negative attitudes towards overweight people are formed when children are young, Carolina Lunde feels that it is important to try to counteract these prejudices at an early stage.
The fact that children and young people have a negative body image can have a number of serious psychological consequences. It increases the risk of developing eating disorders and depression. Exercising too much is also related to a negative body image. Being dissatisfied with one's appearance can also limit children and young people in their everyday lives.
Carolina Lunde says that the title of the thesis "What people tell you gets to you" is a direct quotation from one of the young people who took part in one of the studies. The most dissatisfied young people indicated that their parents and their peer group frequently commented negatively about their appearance.
- It might be the case that being bullied and teased about one's appearance during the early teens when the body is changing so much has a particularly negative impact on body image, observes Carolina Lunde.Title of the thesis: What people tell you gets to you. Body satisfaction and peer victimization in early adolescence.
e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.orgName of faculty opponent: Professor Linda Smolak, Gambier, Ohio, USA
Haraldsgatan 1, GothenburgFor an online version of the thesis go to: http://hdl.handle.net/2077/19350
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