Prevalence and Correlates of the Perpetration of Cyber Dating Abuse among Early Adolescents
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Much is known about the prevalence and correlates of dating violence, especially the perpetration of physical dating violence, among older adolescents. However, relatively little is known about the prevalence and correlates of the perpetration of cyber dating abuse, particularly among early adolescents. In this study, using a predominantly ethnic-minority sample of sixth graders who reported ever having had a boyfriend/girlfriend (n = 424, 44.2 % female), almost 15 % reported perpetrating cyber dating abuse at least once during their lifetime. Furthermore, using a cross-sectional design, across multiple levels of the socio-ecological model, the individual-level factors of (a) norms for violence for boys against girls, (b) having a current boyfriend/girlfriend, and (c) participation in bullying perpetration were correlates of the perpetration of cyber dating abuse. Collectively, the findings suggest that dating violence interventions targeting these particular correlates in early adolescents are warranted. Future studies are needed to establish causation and to further investigate the relative importance of correlates of the perpetration of cyber dating abuse among early adolescents that have been reported among older adolescents.
KeywordsCyber abuse Dating violence Technology Adolescents Perpetration
The authors thank Lionel Santibáñez for his editorial assistance.
MFP conceived the study, participated in the design and implementation of the project, participated in interpretation of data, and drafted the manuscript. CMM, RS, and JRT participated in the design of the study and assisted with development of measures. ERB and RCA performed statistical analyses and data management, respectively. BH and PC participated in the implementation of the study. EKG helped to draft the manuscript. MT coordinated the study. STE participated in the design of the project. All authors read and approved the manuscript.
This study was supported by a grant from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (1R01CE002135). Registration at ClinicalTrials.gov is forthcoming.
Compliance with Ethical Standards
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no competing interests.
All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards. The article does not contain any studies with animals performed by any of the authors.
Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.
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