Document Type

Article

Publication Date

12-1-2021

Publication Title

Depression and anxiety

Abstract

BACKGROUND: Depression is a highly prevalent, debilitating disorder that runs in families. Yet, empirical support for bidirectional mechanisms linking mother-adolescent depression symptoms remains limited. This study examined longitudinal bidirectional relations among emotion regulation (ER) constructs and depressive symptoms among mother-adolescent dyads over time. Pathways for girls and boys were explored separately, given extant research on sex differences in the intergenerational transmission of depression.

METHODS: Adolescent (n = 232; M = 15.02 years, SD = 0.95; 44% female)-mother dyads, drawn from a longitudinal study on the development of risky behaviors, completed annual assessments of depressive symptoms and facets of ER over 4 years. Panel modeling examined lagged and cross-lagged effects of mother-adolescent depressive symptoms and ER constructs over time, in a multigroup model of boys and girls.

RESULTS: Among girls, higher baseline maternal depression scores predicted increased adolescent ER difficulties (std. est. = -.42, p < .001) in turn, predicting increased adolescent depressive symptoms (std. est. = -.33, p = .002) and subsequent maternal ER difficulties (std. est. = .39, p = .002). The indirect effect of maternal depressive symptoms→adolescent ER→adolescent depressive symptoms→maternal ER was significant (ind. eff. = .10, 95% confidence interval [>.001, .19]) for girls, but not boys.

CONCLUSION: Implications for interrupting intergenerational cycles of depressive symptoms and emotion dysregulation are discussed.

PubMed ID

34762765

ePublication

ePub ahead of print

Volume

38

Issue

12

First Page

1225

Last Page

1233

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