Behav. Sci.2015, 5(2), 230-246; doi:10.3390/bs5020230 - published 22 May 2015 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: Unintended pregnancy (UP) is a significant public health problem. The consistent use of effective contraception is the primary method to prevent UP. We examined the role of childhood sexual and physical violence and current interpersonal violence on the risk of unintended pregnancy among young, urban, sexually active women. In particular, we were interested in examining the role of childhood violence and interpersonal violence while recognizing the psychological correlates of experiencing violence (i.e., high depressive symptoms and low self-esteem) and consistent use of contraception. For this assessment, 315 sexually active women living in Philadelphia PA were recruited from family planning clinics in 2013. A self-administered, computer-assisted interview was used to collect data on method of contraception use in the past month, consistency of use, experiences with violence, levels of depressive symptoms, self-esteem and sexual self-efficacy, substance use and health services utilization. Fifty percent of young sexually active women reported inconsistent or no contraception use in the past month. Inconsistent users were significantly more likely to report at least one prior episode of childhood sexual violence and were significantly less likely to have received a prescription for contraception from a health care provider. Inconsistent contraception users also reported significantly higher levels of depressive symptoms and significantly lower levels of self-esteem. The relation between childhood sexual violence and UP remained unchanged in the multivariate models adjusting for self-esteem or depressive symptoms. These findings highlight the long-term consequences of childhood sexual violence, independent of current depressive symptoms and low self-esteem, on consistent use of contraception.
Behav. Sci.2015, 5(2), 214-229; doi:10.3390/bs5020214 - published 4 May 2015 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: Objective. Group fightingis portrayed as a piece of Americana among delinquent youth, but the behavior produces significant multifaceted negative consequences. The current study examines the heterogeneity and correlates of group fighting using national-level data. Method. Employing data from the National Survey on Drug Use and Health between 2002 and 2013 (n = 216,852), we examine links between group fighting and temperamental, parental, and academic factors as well as other externalizing behaviors (i.e., violence, crime, substance use). Results. The prevalence of group fighting in the United States is 14.8% with 11.33% reporting 1–2 group fights and 3.46% reporting 3+ group fights. A clear severity gradient in school functioning and academic performance, sensation seeking, parental disengagement, violence and delinquency, and substance use disorders is seen in the normative, episodic, and repeat offender groups. Conclusions. Youths who participate in 3+ group fights display the exceptionality and severity of other serious/chronic/habitual antisocial youth which suggests that group fighting should be considered a significant indicator of developing criminality.
Behav. Sci.2015, 5(2), 203-213; doi:10.3390/bs5020203 - published 30 April 2015 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: Internet gaming disorder is currently listed in the DSM—not in order to diagnose such a disorder but to encourage research to investigate this phenomenon. Even whether it is still questionable if Internet Gaming Disorder exists and can be judged as a form of addiction, problematic game play is already very well researched to cause problems in daily life. Approaches trying to predict problematic tendencies in digital game play have mainly focused on playing time as a diagnostic criterion. However, motives to engage in digital game play and obsessive passion for game play have also been found to predict problematic game play but have not yet been investigated together. The present study aims at (1) analyzing if obsessive passion can be distinguished from problematic game play as separate concepts, and (2) testing motives of game play, passion, and playing time for their predictive values for problematic tendencies. We found (N = 99 males, Age: M = 22.80, SD = 3.81) that obsessive passion can be conceptually separated from problematic game play. In addition, the results suggest that compared to solely playing time immersion as playing motive and obsessive passion have added predictive value for problematic game play. The implications focus on broadening the criteria in order to diagnose problematic playing.
Behav. Sci.2015, 5(2), 190-202; doi:10.3390/bs5020190 - published 29 April 2015 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: Although sociodemographic factors are one aspect of understanding the effects of neighborhood environments on health, equating neighborhood quality with socioeconomic status ignores the important role of physical neighborhood attributes. Prior work on neighborhood environments and health has relied primarily on level of socioeconomic disadvantage as the indicator of neighborhood quality without attention to physical neighborhood quality. A small but increasing number of studies have assessed neighborhood physical characteristics. Findings generally indicate that there is an association between living in deprived neighborhoods and poor health outcomes, but rigorous evidence linking specific physical neighborhood attributes to particular health outcomes is lacking. This paper discusses the methodological challenges and limitations of measuring physical neighborhood environments relevant to health and concludes with proposed directions for future work.
Behav. Sci.2015, 5(2), 176-189; doi:10.3390/bs5020176 - published 27 April 2015 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: Aggression continues to be a serious problem among children, especially those children who have experienced adverse life events such as maltreatment. However, there are many maltreated children who show resilient functioning. This study investigated potential protective factors (i.e., child prosocial skills, child internalizing well-being, and caregiver well-being) that promoted positive adaptation and increased the likelihood of a child engaging in the healthy, normative range of aggressive behavior, despite experiencing physical maltreatment. Logistic regression analyses were conducted using two waves of data from the National Survey of Child and Adolescent Well-Being (NSCAW-I). Children who were physically maltreated were more likely to exhibit clinical levels of aggressive behavior at Time 1 than children who were not physically maltreated. Children’s internalizing well-being, children’s prosocial behavior, and caregivers’ well-being were associated with lower likelihood of clinical levels of aggressive behavior at Time 1. Children’s internalizing well-being and children’s prosocial behavior remained significantly associated with nonclinical aggression 18 months later. These findings highlight the role of protective factors in fostering positive and adaptive behaviors in maltreated children. Interventions focusing on preventing early aggression and reinforcing child prosocial skills, child internalizing well-being, and caregiver well-being may be promising in promoting healthy positive behavioral adjustment.
Behav. Sci.2015, 5(2), 154-175; doi:10.3390/bs5020154 - published 16 April 2015 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: The purpose of the current study was to examine the joint influences of experiential avoidance and social problem solving on the link between childhood emotional abuse (CEA) and intimate partner violence (IPV). Experiential avoidance following CEA may interfere with a person’s ability to effectively problem solve in social situations, increasing risk for conflict and interpersonal violence. As part of a larger study, 232 women recruited from the community completed measures assessing childhood emotional, physical, and sexual abuse, experiential avoidance, maladaptive social problem solving, and IPV perpetration and victimization. Final trimmed models indicated that CEA was indirectly associated with IPV victimization and perpetration via experiential avoidance and Negative Problem Orientation (NPO) and Impulsivity/Carelessness Style (ICS) social problem solving strategies. Though CEA was related to an Avoidance Style (AS) social problem solving strategy, this strategy was not significantly associated with IPV victimization or perpetration. Experiential avoidance had both a direct and indirect effect, via NPO and ICS social problem solving, on IPV victimization and perpetration. Findings suggest that CEA may lead some women to avoid unwanted internal experiences, which may adversely impact their ability to effectively problem solve in social situations and increase IPV risk.