Peer Victimization in Adolescents With Severe Obesity: The Roles of Self-Worth and Social Support in Associations With Psychosocial Adjustment.
PMCID: PMC6075376 DOI: 10.1093/jpepsy/jsw078
Objective: To examine the associations of peer victimization with internalizing symptoms, externalizing symptoms, social competence, and academic performance in a clinical sample of adolescents with severe obesity, and whether self-worth and social support affect these associations.
Methods: Multisite cross-sectional data from 139 adolescents before weight loss surgery ( M age = 16.9; 79.9% female, 66.2% White; M Body Mass Index [BMI] = 51.5 kg/m 2 ) and 83 nonsurgical comparisons ( M age = 16.1; 81.9% female, 54.2% White; M BMI = 46.9 kg/m 2 ) were collected using self-reports with standardized measures.
Results: As a group, participants did not report high levels of victimization. Self-worth mediated the effects of victimization on a majority of measures of adjustment, and further analyses provided evidence of the buffering effect of social support for some mediational models.
Conclusions: Self-worth and social support are important targets for prevention and intervention for both victimization and poor adjustment in adolescent severe obesity.
Journal of pediatric psychology
Adaptation, Psychological; Adolescent; Adolescent Behavior; Bullying; Crime Victims; Cross-Sectional Studies; Female; Humans; Male; Obesity, Morbid; Peer Group; Self Concept; Self Report; Social Adjustment; Social Support
teenagers; fat shaming; adolescents; bariatric; severe obesity; surgery; victimization
Reiter-Purtill J, Gowey MA, Austin H, et al. Peer Victimization in Adolescents With Severe Obesity: The Roles of Self-Worth and Social Support in Associations With Psychosocial Adjustment. J Pediatr Psychol. 2017;42(3):272-282. doi:10.1093/jpepsy/jsw078