The present study investigated the friendships of 221 male juvenile delinquents in a juvenile classification home. Participants in the study were instructed to describe a friend with whom they had often interacted recently. The results suggested that most of the delinquents considered that their friends were accepted by those around them, such as their parents, and that they did not intend to break off their relationships. A factor analysis of reasons given for interacting with the friend found 3 factors: "trust/intimacy," "acceptance/sympathy," and "avoidance of discomfort." Factor analysis of the nature of the relationship with the friend revealed 4 factors: "sharing their inner feelings," "defense," "seeking pleasure," and "independence." The participants' answers showed that their friendships were neither superficial nor temporary. In addition, the relation among the above factors showed that "sharing their inner feelings" was influenced by "trust/intimacy" and "acceptance/sympathy," and that "independence" was influenced by "trust/intimacy" and "avoidance of discomfort." Finally, how each factor was related to the participants' age and history of deviant behavior, as well as their friend's history of deviant behavior, was analyzed.
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