Today’s Washington Post has an article on the psychology of rejection in children’s social circles and its possible long-term effects on behaviour and mental health.
It comes in the wake of the Virginia Tech massacre and it aims to make sense of bullying and rejection by looking at scientific studies in the area.
These have uncovered which things make a child more likely to be rejected, and what is likely to occur when it happens.
One key finding is that early rejection means that children are less likely to develop social skills, meaning continued rejection is more likely.
This has led to a focus on ‘early intervention’ for troubled children to try and prevent them from getting caught up in the vicious circle of social exclusion.
This is a valuable project because rejection is known to be associated with depression, behaviour problems and chance of becoming involved in criminal activities.
The article looks at some of the recent studies that have focused on this area, and talks to some of the professionals involved in trying to make a difference with vulnerable young people.
Link to article ‘A Better Response to Rejection’.