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17-05-2018 | Original Paper | Uitgave 9/2019

Journal of Child and Family Studies 9/2019

Proximal Associations among Bullying, Mood, and Substance Use: A Daily Report Study

Journal of Child and Family Studies > Uitgave 9/2019
Jennifer A. Livingston, Jaye L. Derrick, Weijun Wang, Maria Testa, Amanda B. Nickerson, Dorothy L. Espelage, Kathleen E. Miller


Adolescent involvement in bullying as a victim or perpetrator has been associated with negative health outcomes, including emotional distress and substance use. Whether negative affect and substance use are acute responses to bullying involvement or whether they develop over time is unknown. Such knowledge is needed to understand the conditions under which bullying contributes to adverse outcomes, as well as to inform the development of appropriate interventions. This study examined the daily-level associations among bullying, negative affect, and substance use (i.e., alcohol, cigarettes, electronic-cigarettes, marijuana) among a community sample of adolescents (N = 204) ages 13–16 years (55% female, 81% European American, 13% African–American) who had reported bully victimization or perpetration in the past 6 months. Participants completed a brief on-line survey every day for 56 consecutive days, reporting on their experiences with bully victimization, bully perpetration, mood, and substance use for that day. Consistent with hypotheses, being bullied on a given day was associated with reporting greater than average levels of sadness (b= 0.279, 95% CI= [0.172, 0.387]), anger (b= 0.354, 95% CI= [0.242, 0.466]), and cigarette use (OR= 1.453, 95% CI= [1.006, 2.099]) on that day; however, it was not associated with alcohol, electronic-cigarette, or marijuana use. Perpetration was not associated with same day negative affect or substance use. Results of the current study suggest that negative affect and cigarette use may be acute responses to bully victimization. Bully perpetration does not appear to be proximally linked to mood or substance use after accounting for victimization.

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