Aggressive or Antisocial Behavior

Aggressive behaviors include physical aggression, and social/relational aggression (which relates to behavior that is intended to harm another’s friendships, social status, or self esteem).  In very young children, some level of physical aggression toward siblings, peers, and adults is common.  However, children and youth who persist in aggressive behaviors are at higher risk for alcohol and drug abuse, injuries, violent criminality, depression, suicide attempts, and domestic violence (Tremblay, Nagin, Seguin, Zoccolillo, Zelazo, Boivin, Perusse, & Japel, 2004; Goldstein, Young, & Boyd, 2008), as well as for academic underachievement (Hinshaw, 1992).  

By ChildTrends


  • Bullying
  • Child Abuse and Neglect
  • Criminal Behavior
  • Delinquent Behavior
  • Gang Violence
  • Intimate Partner Violence
  • Physical Aggression
  • Psychological/Emotional Aggression
  • Social Aggression
  • Verbal Aggression


Sources Cited

Goldstein, S. E., Young, A., and Boyd, C. (2008).  Relational aggression at school: Associations with school safety and social climate.  Journal of Youth and Adolescence, 37, 641-654.

Hinshaw, S. P., 1992.  Externalizing behavior problems and academic underachievement in childhood and adolescence: Causal relationships and underlying mechanisms.  Psychological Bulletin, 111(1), 127-155.

Tremblay, R. E.,Nagin, D. S., Seguin, J. R., Zoccolillo, M., Zelazo, P. D., Boivin, M., Perusse, D. & Japel, C., 2004). Physical aggression during early childhood: Trajectories and predictors.  Pediatrics, 114(1), e43-e49.