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Longitudinal Associations Between Peer Victimization and Positive and Negative Social Risk Taking in Adolescence and Young Adulthood

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Adolescence is characterized by heightened risk taking, along with salient peer relationships. This study leveraged data from 167 adolescents across five years (M(SD)age = 15.05 (0.54) years at Time 1; 47% female) to examine how risk perception and peer victimization in adolescence interrelate and predict risk likelihood in young adulthood. Bivariate growth curve modeling revealed that higher initial levels of positive social risk perception predicted a slower decrease in relational victimization throughout adolescence. Higher initial levels of relational victimization in adolescence predicted higher negative social risk likelihood in young adulthood. Adolescents with heightened risk sensitivity to positive social risks may be vulnerable to relational victimization, and prevention efforts to reduce relational victimization may protect adolescents from future negative risk taking.

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We are grateful to the adolescents and parents who participated in this study. We thank the former and current JK Lifespan Development Lab members for their help with data collection.


This work was supported by grants awarded to Jungmeen Kim-Spoon and Brooks Casas from the National Institute on Drug Abuse (R01 DA036017). Funding source had no involvement in study design, data collection and analysis, or writing of the report.

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Data are available upon request given a formal sharing agreement.

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J.G. drafted the manuscript, interpreted the data, and performed the statistical analysis. C.C. helped to draft the manuscript. M.E. helped to draft the manuscript. L.S. helped to draft the manuscript. B.C. conceived of the study and participated in its design and coordination. and J.K.S. conceived of the study, participated in its design and coordination, helped perform the statistical analyses, and helped to draft the manuscript. All authors read and approved the final manuscript.

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Correspondence to Jungmeen Kim-Spoon.

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The authors declare no competing interests.

Ethical Approval

This study was performed in line with the principles of the Declaration of Helsinki. Approval was granted by the Institutional Review Board (IRB).

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Written informed consent was obtained from all participants. When participants were not legally adults, written informed consent was provided by the parents, and written assent was provided by the participants.

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Gamache, J., Clinchard, C., Egan, M. et al. Longitudinal Associations Between Peer Victimization and Positive and Negative Social Risk Taking in Adolescence and Young Adulthood. J Youth Adolescence 52, 1902–1918 (2023).

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