Investigating the association between callous-unemotional traits with relational bullying and victimization: A cross-national study
AuthorFanti, Kostas A.
Kokkinos, Costantinos M.
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Prior research supports an association between callous-unemotional (CU) traits with relational bullying, but evidence associating CU traits with relational victimization is limited. Further, the relationship between CU traits with relational “bully,” “bully-victim,” and “victim” classifications has been largely neglected. The current study addresses these critical gaps in the literature using a cross-national study design. The sample comprised of 1887 (51.5% of girls) Greek and Cypriot children (MAge = 11.17) who completed a battery of self-report measures. Group differences suggested that children in the relational bully and bully-victim groups scored higher on CU traits compared to children in the victim and low-risk groups. Although these associations were similar across countries, boys in Greece were more likely to be identified in the bullying only group. In contrast, boys in Cyprus represented the higher percentage identified as bully-victims and girls in Cyprus represented the higher percentage identified as victim-only. Regression analysis results indicated that CU traits predicted relational bullying but not victimization. Notwithstanding, other important unexamined factors known to contribute to relational bullying and victimization, our findings suggest that prevention efforts should consider CU traits in order to protect youth from relational bullying. However, differences between countries and gender should also be taken into account.