Collaborative conversations: Adolescent girls' own strategies for managing conflict within their friendship groups

Jillian Huntley, Laurence Owens

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    4 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    Adolescent girls' friendships are often disrupted by conflict and aggressive behaviour. Solving these difficulties is challenging as girls claim that adult intervention can make things worse. What advice would girls themselves give their friends if they were experiencing peer relationship difficulties? This study addressed this question using a narrative perspective, and a participatory action research approach. Seventy-five 14-15-year-old adolescent girls engaged in a series of interactive focus group sessions. A cyclical process of group interviews, discussions and data analysis saw the refinement of the girls' knowledge and the development of 10 key strategies for managing peer conflict. The most highly ranked strategies included: developing a wide circle of friends, having a voice, walking away from conflict, talking individually to peers, and avoiding participating in hurtful behaviours. Acknowledging adolescent girls' knowledge, creativity, and abilities creates an alternative story, enabling them to better manage peer conflict.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)236-247
    Number of pages12
    JournalInternational Journal of Adolescence and Youth
    Volume18
    Issue number4
    Early online date2013
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2013

    Keywords

    • adolescent girls
    • conflict
    • friendship
    • narrative research
    • participatory action research

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