Peer Relations and the Behaviorally Inhibited Child



In this chapter, we describe the peer relations of socially wary and withdrawn children. Nomenclature, in this regard, is of significance. This compendium is focused on the construct of behavioral inhibition (BI). The vast majority of published work on the peer relations of behaviorally inhibited children has focused on laboratory-based paradigms in which the focal children have been observed in the company of unfamiliar peers. However, if one is to describe the most meaningful experiences that children have with their peers, one must review the extant work that pertains to their social lives when they are in familiar, everyday settings. Consequently, in this chapter, we focus not only on the construct of behavioral inhibition as it was originally defined but also on the extant literature pertaining to the study of the peer interactions, friendships, peer reputations, and social groups of socially wary, shy, and anxiously withdrawn children in their school settings.


Behavioral inhibition Anxious withdrawal Social reticence Peer rejection Friendship 


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Human Development and Quantitative MethodologyUniversity of Maryland – College ParkCollege ParkUSA
  2. 2.Department of PsychologyUniversity at Buffalo, SUNYBuffaloUSA

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