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Perceived Family Relationships and Depressed Mood in Early and Late Adolescence: A Comparison of European and Asian Americans


This study examined perceived parent-adolescent relationships and depressed mood among 173 early adolescents and 297 college students, all of European or Asian American background. Ethnic differences in depressed mood, not evident in the early adolescent sample, emerged in the college sample, with Asian Americans reporting more symptoms. Ethnic differences in depressed mood were reduced to nonsignificant when quality of parent-adolescent relationships was statistically controlled. The magnitude of associations between measures of parent-adolescent relationships and depressed mood was strikingly similar for European and Asian Americans at the same phase of adolescence. As anticipated, perceived parent-adolescent relationships accounted for more of the variance in depressed mood in early adolescence than in late adolescence: 44% to 51 % for the junior high samples and about 10% for the college samples.

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