AbstractInvestigated the role of friendship and gender on conflict episodes of 48 preschoolers aged approximately 5 years and 8 months. Children were organized in dyads of same-sex friends
and non-friends. Conflict situations were coded according to incidence, type, termination strategies, and finalizations. Gender differences were detected for type of conflict, with girls using more reasons for oppositions than boys. Termination strategies were used with a joint effect of friendship and gender: girl-friends preferred the tactic of standing firm whereas
boy-friends chose more negotiation as means to deal with a disagreement, compared to the non-friend dyads. As for the results on conflict finalizations, friendship relations accounted
for a significant difference found for agreement, while gender showed to be related to the use of disengagement among girls. Combined analysis between termination strategies and conflict finalizations indicated two significant differences: the first was related to friendship, through which children used more negotiation leading to agreement; the second showed a
joint effect of friendship and gender, where non-friend girls tended to negotiate to reach disengagement, more often that non-friend boys. Findings for termination strategies – with
girl-friends being more incisive and firm with their partners – diverge from the results provided by empirical literature, where boys are described as more autonomy- and domain
oriented, and girls are prone to intimacy and social well-being in their relationships. Results are discussed with basis on previous studies conducted on conflict among preschoolers with
considerations about the effects of gender and type of relationship.