Anger rumination and unjust world beliefs moderate the association between cyberbullying victimization and psychiatric symptoms

Ágnes Zsila, R. Urbán, Z. Demetrovics

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Several studies have found a positive relationship between cyberbullying victimization and psychiatric symptoms such as depression or anxiety. However, relatively little research has investigated factors that might moderate this association. The present study aimed to examine the moderating role of anger rumination, unjust world beliefs and perceived social support in the relationship between cyberbullying victimization and psychiatric symptoms across different victim groups. A total of 1,500 participants (57.9% male, Mage = 28.9 years, SD = 8.7) were recruited using an online questionnaire. According to the results, 29.8% of participants reported being bullied online during the past year. Results also indicated that cyberbullying victims but not bully-victims with a tendency to ruminate on past anger episodes and strong unjust world beliefs are more likely to experience psychiatric symptoms. These findings point to the differences between victims and bully-victims in the mechanisms underlying the victimization–psychiatric symptoms association, and highlight the importance of emotion regulation and just world beliefs in preserving and enhancing psychological well-being in those individuals who had been bullied online.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)432-440
Number of pages9
JournalPsychiatry Research
Publication statusPublished - Oct 1 2018



  • Anger
  • Beliefs
  • Cyberbullying
  • Psychiatric symptoms
  • Social support
  • Victimization

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Biological Psychiatry

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