Perspectives on late adolescent cyberbullying victimization: Gender differences in behavioural health effects
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Even though information technology has brought great benefits to its users, its growing popularity has also increased the risk of cyberbullying. This research fills an empirical gap by exploring both the perceptions of late adolescent victims and gender differences in the behavioral health effects of online bullying. It presents a perspective on changing health behavior that aligns with the conceptual framework of social cognitive theory (SCT). The sample comprised 578 undergraduate students (286 males and 292 females) from three university campuses in Thailand that were selected by using a multistage random sampling technique. The causal relationships between factors in the model were analyzed using partial least squares structural equation modeling (PLS‐SEM). The results indicated that social media addiction and self-disclosures on social media are key environmental factors, for both males and females, leading to victimization by cyberbullying. In particular, late adolescents who compare themselves with others (i.e., social comparison) are more severely affected by cyberbullying. In addition, these findings reveal a new relationship between victimization and sleep disorders: For both men and women, social comparison mediates the relationship between cyberbullying victimization and sleep disorders. This study's results clarify how health behaviors are affected by the environment and the personal behavior of victims of online bullying.
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