UNH Study Finds Youths Who Form Close Online Relationships Are More Troubled
March 17, 2003
DURHAM, N.H. -- Young people who form close online relationships are
more likely to be highly troubled or to have high levels of conflict or
low levels of communication with parents, according to a new study by
University of New Hampshire researchers.
The researchers note that youth who are troubled or who have difficult relationships with their parents may be more vulnerable to online exploitation and to other possible ill effects of online relationships. At the same time, the researchers caution against assuming all such relationships are negative and dangerous. For some troubled youth, the online relationships may have helpful aspects. The online relationships are likely to be extremely diverse, as are the youth involved in them.
The authors suggest that parents and people who work with adolescents
be conscious of the role the Internet may play in the lives of teenagers
and prompt youth to talk about online relationships they may be involved