Touch as a Part of Daily Communication with Family and Friends

Touch as a Part of Daily Communication with Family and Friends

Tihana Brkljačić (Institute of Social Sciences Ivo Pilar, Croatia), Božidar Nikša Tarabić (Child Protection Center, Croatia) and Marshall C. Lewis (Independent Researcher, Croatia)
Copyright: © 2017 |Pages: 24
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-2404-5.ch005
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Abstract

The aim of this research was to explore the use of tactile communication in daily interactions with friends and parents. The participants were 429 students. The questionnaire consisted of: behavioral measures; touch-attitude scale; well-being; internet use; and demographic variables. Females showed more positive touch-attitudes, reported more touch behaviors in communication with same sex peers and parents, and reported more confidential talks with both friends and parents. Males and females did not differ regarding the use of touch in communication with the opposite sex. Participants used more tactile behavior in communication with parents than with friends. Those who used tactile communication more with parents, also reported more tactile communication with friends, and more confidential talks with both friends and parents, and rated higher the importance of the Internet in communication. Students with high levels of well-being showed more positive touch-attitudes, reported more tactile communication with both friends and parents and reported more confidential talks with friends.
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Introduction

Research Overview: Ends and Means

This chapter reports on original, questionnaire-based research into attitudes towards, and (self-perceived) patterns of, tactile engagement on the part of late-stage adolescents in the course of various types of communicative interactions with parents and friends, with special attention to possible gender differences. To this end, specialized research instruments were developed, so a concomitant objective was to assess their reliability. The study further explores the extent of correlation between these initial results and two additional factors: (a) attitudes toward more mediated forms of regular communication, in this case the perceived importance of Internet communication with peers; and a (b) general sense of personal well-being. Insofar as certain correlations were in fact successfully identified, the predictive utility of the measures in question appear to be supported, producing an overall positive yield on both the empirical and methodological planes.

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