Self-debasing cognitive distortion influences a person’s interpretation and increases the likelihood of negative reactions to events. Despite the theoretical support for the significant influence that cognition has in the onset and maintenance of behavioural and emotional reactions to victimisation, little research has been done on proactive cognitive strategy to down regulate negative emotional and behavioural reactions to witnessing bullying. For this reason, a qualitative descriptive-exploratory design was utilised to explore 10 early adolescent bystanders' reactions to school bullying following a self-debasing cognitive distortion restructuring intervention. Findings indicated that there were reductions in bystanders’ negative reactions to witnessing bullying that resulted from challenging the validity and reality of distortions in their thinking patterns. The study recommended that bystanders should be equipped with self-debasing cognitive distortions restructuring skills to root out the source of bias in their thought patterns with a view of down regulating their emotional and behavioural reactions to witnessing bullying.
Early Adolescent, school bullying, bystanders, self-debasing cognitive distortions, emotional and behavioural reactions, descriptive exploratory
We are grateful to the Department of Education Pretoria for allowing this study to be conducted in the Gauteng province of South Africa
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Recommended APA Citation
Adewoye, S. E., & du Plessis, A. (2021). Self-Debasing Cognitive Distortions Restructuring Intervention Down Regulate Bystanders Emotional and Behavioural Reactions to Witnessing School Bullying. The Qualitative Report, 26(9), 2924-2942. https://doi.org/10.46743/2160-3715/2021.4852