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The reasons of self-injurious behavior in youth (based on a self-report scale)
Polskaya N.A., Doctor in Psychology, Chair of Clinical Psychology and Psychotherapy, Counseling and Clinical Psychology Department, Moscow State University of Psychology & Education, Moscow, Russia, firstname.lastname@example.org
The article presents the results of the pilot study investigating the psychological mechanisms of self-injurious behavior. The research tool is the scale of reasons of self-injurious behavior developed by the author. It is hypothesized that self-injuries in youth constitute a reaction to acute internal ill-being and provide a regulatory function, that is, by the means of self-injuring one takes control over his/her psychological state and behavior or searches social support in relationships with significant others and draws attention to him/herself. In the structure of processes of psychological regulation self-injury can represent a means of controlling of the self and the behavior of the others. Research sample consists of 60 students, age 16—21. Connections between self-injuries and psychological reasons explaining them are investigated. The regulative structure of self-injurious behavior is revealed in four factors: influencing the others, reducing tension, modifying self (searching for new experience) and regaining control of emotions.
Keywords: self-injurious behavior, youth, identity, behavior control, self-regulation
Column: Empirical researches