This article presents the features of victim behavior in the personality. It also discusses the main risk factors during teenage years which make this age group vulnerable to victim behavior. The authors explore a theoretical analysis of the main reasons for victim behavior of the personality. This is done by means of the results of an empirical study concerning interrelated characterological features of teenagers and their predisposition to victim behavior. Specifically, the article examines the correlated interrelations between the tendency to aggressive, self-damaging and self-destroying victim behaviors and liveliness, affectivity and meticulousness. The relationships between the tendency to hyper social, dependent and helpless behavior and uneasiness, imbalance, neuroticism and involvement are also studied. There is also connection between realized victimhood and affectivity, neuroticism, acceptance of risk and control; between the tendency to noncritical behavior and involvement and control. The authors then use the results of the study to categorize the characterological types of teenagers corresponding to various types of victim behavior. They are the depressive type, inclined to aggressive victim behavior; the excitable type, inclined to auto-aggressive victim behavior; the disturbed type, inclined to the expression of pro-social behavior; the unstable type, inclined to dependent behavior; the fond type, inclined to noncritical behavior; and the affective type, inclined to the realized victim behavior.
Keywords: Victim behaviorteenagerscharacterological featurespersonality
In the modern world, media quite often present information about children and teenagers involved in crimes or violence. At the same time, teenagers more often than not act as victims, which indicates the special place of the victim behavior problem in teenagers among other current problems in psychology. The prerequisites to the formation of victim behavior are characteristic of all age periods in the development of a child since early childhood. The following prerequisites include episodes of both physical and psychological violence in the family: alcoholism, drug addiction, parental immorality, frequent family relocation, negative social environment (peers, teachers), corruption, oppression, and loneliness (Pronina, 2008; Morozova, 2003; Zhihareva, 2018). At the same time, teenage years are a sensitive and important period for the formation of a victim behavioral model from the standpoint of victimologic prevention, the period of active growth (Anisimov, Matusevich, & Shatrova, 2013). The victim behavior phenomenon, a concept of victim behavior and victimization of the personality in the domestic sphere were discussed in publications by V.L. Vasilyev, E.V. Melnikova, N.B. Morozova, and I.V. Kuznetsova (Kuznetsova & Ermoshenko, 2013), where victim behavior is understood as a predisposition of the person to the role of the victim in certain circumstances (Vasiliev & Mamajchuk ,1993; Melnikova, 2005; Kolchik, 2018). However, these works are based primarily on materials from judicial and psychiatric practices where theoretical analysis is based on the personality characteristics of a fully formed personality, showing victim behavior. The practical aspect of this problem is of special interest; namely the mechanisms of the formation of victim behavior, the factors determining similar behavior, the features of children yet to fall victim in a criminal situation remain unstudied. The theoretical analysis of modern psychological literature allows one to determine two main approaches explaining victim behavior: the first approach assigns the leading role in victim behavior to present circumstances and situational features, and the second approach focuses attention on individual and psychological features of the personality. The existing research in the field (Matusevich & Tkachuk, 2014; Feldman, 2012) indicates that victim behavior takes place only with the simultaneous existence of several factors – situational, individual, psychological, and certain emotional coloring. In real experience, only one of these factors need be present for the realization of a model of victim behavior. The diagnostic material making it possible to reveal a tendency toward victim behavior at early stages is practically non-existent. A system of preventive actions necessary for a timely prevention of formation of victim behavior is also insufficiently developed.
Teenage years are a time when a person has little life experience but has to cope with and solve various problems, such as the release from guardianship of adults, forming relationship with peers and with people of an opposite sex, and older teenagers face the problem of choosing a profession.
Interest, naivety, suggestibility, a thirst for adventures, a lack of ability to adapt quickly to surrounding conditions, helplessness in conflicting life situations and other cases, along with physical weakness, are psycho-physical features of childhood and teenage years which create a pronounced victim behavior in this age group. Taking into account everything listed above, teenagers face a variety of problems with which many young people cannot independently cope when entering independent life. The victim behavior will be more often observed in young people who have no life experience, are incompetent, ignore warnings, are careless, imprudent, make risky actions, and are reckless.
Based on the analysis of victimology research, it was determined that the personality framework of a victim-prone personality contains split-levels elements which become more active under the influence of risky situations and are psychological prerequisites to the transformation of this personality into a victim.
From a psychology point of view, to answer the question “Why does this person or this category of people become victims of crimes?”, it is necessary to establish how to measure personal will, emotional and social processes, as well as personal borders which influence the degree of victim-prone behavior in certain persons. It is important to determine how personal borders are shown in critical situations – why one easily becomes a victim, and others safely avoid danger under similar circumstances. The results of such research would promote identifying criteria which would facilitate recognizing a potential victim long before such person becomes one.
The subject of the article is psychological features of the identity of teenagers.
Purpose of the Study
The purpose of this research is studying individual and personal features in the identity of teenagers inclined to victim behaviour.
To achieve the research purpose in this study, a number of methods were used: theoretical and methodological analysis, systematization and synthesis of psychological data on a research problem, methods of psychological diagnostics and methods of mathematical statistics of data processing. A psycho-diagnostic complex includes the following methods: the “Psychological Diagnostics” technique to measure the predisposition of teenagers towards realized forms of victim behaviour, "Diagnostics of the Victim Role" , a technique of accentuation in character and temperament of the personality which is intended for diagnosing accentuation in character and temperament, "Express Diagnostics of Characterological Features of the Personality" which is intended for the study of individual and psychological lines in personalities. Sixty teenagers, aged fifteen to sixteen, who demonstrated a tendency for victim behavior participated in this study (Emilianov, 2008).
The results of statistical processing of the various obtained data demonstrate reliable connections between the types of tendency to victim behavior and characterological features of the identity of teenagers were established.
So, there is a reliable connection between indicators of aggressive victim behavior tendency and suppressed mood (207 * were found with р ≥, 015). According to the presented results, teenagers inclined to aggressive types of victim behavior often show a suppressed mood background – they underestimate a self-assessment, and the pessimistic relation to the future is often noted. Such teenagers differ in seriousness and briefness of expressions (Figure
According to the results presented in figure
In the structure of the personal sphere of teenagers inclined to the self-damaging, self-destroying behaviour, there is a striking trait of attraction seeking. They are quick-tempered, but accurate at the same time. They often enter the conflict, rarely passing leadership to others.
According to the results presented in figure
There are reliable correlations between indicators of dependent and helpless behavior and a suppressed mood (254 ** were found with р ≥, 006), the involvement (230 ** with р ≥, 012) and the return correlation with a scale of neuroticism (-, 255 ** with р ≥, 005). According to the presented results, teenagers inclined to dependent and helpless behavior are often excitable, aggressive and disturbed. They react too emotionally to any situation and are excessively impulsive. It is typical for them to exaggerate and dramatize and they are very sensitive to criticism. They can feel unnecessary and pointless in activities. They lack strength and persistence to finish things they start and they constantly feel useless and odd. Teenagers with a distinct type of accentuation of character are serious and at the same time are very sluggish and show weak will power. They see the future rather pessimistically.
According to the results presented in figure
According to the results presented in figure
According to the presented results, teenagers inclined to the realized type of victimhood are very emotional, sensitive to many situations, are rather disturbed. Under external expression of wellbeing, there is internal dissatisfaction and the personal conflicts. They react to everything too emotionally and often inadequately to the situation.
Teenagers inclined to the realized type of victim behavior are sure that everything that happens to them, positive or negative, contributes to the development of their experience. These emotions give them love for life. They take up on the most daring ideas. They control a situation as long as they need it. They always achieve goals, considering that it can affect result, even in case that success is not guaranteed and defeat is possible. They are confident only in themselves and their influence on the outcome. Such young people are absolutely sure that their life is in their hands (Emilianov, 2008).
Thus, as a result of the conducted empirical research, we marked out individual and personal features of the teenagers inclined to victim behavior correlation communications between types of victim behavior and characterological features of teenagers are found and analyzed, and also characterological types of the teenagers inclined to certain types of victim behavior are allocated. Potentially most dangerous types of the identity of teenagers are, first of all, those types which are characterized by a suppressed mood, drastic changes in their mood from the clearly positive to clearly negative; some estrangement from surrounding people, a high neorutism and the expressed readiness for risky behavior. These lines are interconnected with the low level of self-checking and susceptibility to affective flashes which cause not only the realized victim behavior, but suicide behavior. Superficial, unstable, disturbing and autoagressive types cause the self-damaging, noncritical and dependent behavior connected with lack of the developed self-checking behind the actions and behavior. The received results give the chance for correctional and therapeutic actions to increase chances for adaptation of teenagers and mitigation of a number of the characterological lines causing victim behavior at this age
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29 March 2019
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Kolchik, E., & Zhihareva *, L. (2019). Features Of Personality Victim Behavior In Adolescence. In & D. K. Bataev (Ed.), Social and Cultural Transformations in the Context of Modern Globalism, vol 58. European Proceedings of Social and Behavioural Sciences (pp. 2757-2763). Future Academy. https://doi.org/10.15405/epsbs.2019.03.02.321