This study evaluated the relationship between three different dimensions of sibling abuse– verbal, physical, and sexual– and communicative social adaptability and risk-taking outcomes. A quantitative survey (N = 477) explored the frequency of such abuse among college students and self-reported risk-taking behavior, social experience, social wit, appropriate self-disclosure, social confirmation, and social composure. Moreover, participants responded to nominal prompts asking whether they ever reported their sibling abuse. Independent sample t-tests and correlation tests show that survivors of sibling trauma are moee likely to appropriately disclose socially and are more likely to report engaging in an index of various risky behaviors (e.g. heavy drinking and suicidal ideation) during their life. The three dimensions of trauma are correlated with different dimensions of communicative social adaptability and risk-taking behaviors. With regard to communicative social adaptability, experiencing verbal abuse is correlated with an increase in social confirmation, appropriate social disclosure, and social wit while physical abuse is correlated with an increase in social confirmation and social wit. These results supplement a small but extant body of literature on sibling abuse and demonstrates the need to further study maladaptive sibling dyads.
Master of Arts (M.A.)
College of Community Innovation and Education
Communication; Interpersonal Communication
Length of Campus-only Access
Masters Thesis (Open Access)
Collins, Chad, "Living with Cain: Associations Among Sibling Trauma, Sibling Aggression, Social Adaptability, and Risk Taking in College" (2019). Electronic Theses and Dissertations, 2004-2019. 6402.