Social and individual antecedents of piu from a

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Social and Individual Antecedents of PIUFromatheoreticalperspective,theCognitive-Behavioral Model (Davis, 2001) positions the socialenvironment as a key determinant of PIU. Adoptingthis model, the present study focused on the predic-tiveroleoflonelinessandperceivedparentingbehaviors in relation to PIU trajectories. Our resultssupported Hypothesis 2 and were convergent withprevious research results reporting positive associa-tions between loneliness and PIU. These associationswere found to generalize over the 3 years of thestudy, showing that time-specific levels of lonelinesssystematically predicted higher levels of PIU at thenexttimepointoverandabovestudent-specificloneliness trajectories. Lonely or isolated individu-als, because of an insufficient degree of satisfactionof their need for relatedness, might be more likelyto turn to the internet in order to compensate forthis perceived isolation andfind an alternative wayof fulfilling their needs for relatedness (Vansteen-kiste & Ryan, 2013) and of coping with the negativeemotions known to be associated with loneliness(Bastian et al., 2015). Prior empirical research hasalready provided support for this assertion (Jun &Choi, 2015). The relative ease with which internetcan be used to such end while remaining physicallyisolated, relative to real-life social contacts, might inturn explain why this use carries a risk of becomingexcessive or problematic. Indeed, internet use mightallow isolated users to overcome their perceivedsocialincompetence(Caplan,2003)anddevelopsocial relations with others in asaferonline envi-ronment. By this, the internet might allowthe poorto get richin terms of social connections (Ellison,Steinfield, & Lampe, 2007).Previous studies have highlighted the relevanceof perceived parenting practices with respect to PIU(e.g., Li et al., 2014). The present study providedsupport for these results by showing that maternaland paternal practices differentially predicted PIU.However, Hypotheses 3 and 4 were only partiallysupported as maternal (but not paternal) care wasfound to predict lower initial levels of PIU, andpaternal (but not maternal) neglect was found topredict higher initial values of PIU.Thesefindings, aligning with prior studies (e.g.,Shek, Zhu, et al., 2019), highlight the adaptive roleof having a good parentchild relationship in rela-tion to PIU. Mothersperceived caring behaviorsnegatively predicted PIU, suggesting that express-ing warmth and interest toward adolescents andcultivating a quality relationship with them mightdecrease their need to seek solace in PIU. As itProblematic Internet Use Trajectories13
becomes progressively internalized into their iden-tity, caring maternal behaviors may gradually giverise to more optimal self-care behaviors during thisdevelopmentalperiod(Omeretal.,2016),thushelping adolescents to more efficiently self-monitortheir internet usage without the need for externalregulators.

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