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As peers become more salient during early adolescence, the perception of supportive parenting may become an important buffer against peer-related stressors, such as peer victimization. The purpose of the current study was to examine whether perceived supportive parenting moderates the association between peer victimization and depressive symptoms among early adolescents. The study contributes to the literature by specifically addressing both the source of supportive parenting (mothers vs. fathers) and the type of victimization (physical vs. relational).
Survey data on peer victimization, depressive symptoms, and perceived supportive parenting were collected from 237 middle school students (50% female; Mage = 12.21 years) in a mid-Atlantic metropolitan area.
Regression analyses indicated that both relational (b = 0.45, p = 0.0005) and physical victimization (b = 0.35, p = 0.0265) were positively associated with depressive symptoms and that perceived supportive parenting from both parents was negatively associated with depressive symptoms (mothers: b = −0.20, p = 0.0006; fathers: b = −0.14, p = 0.0093). Perceived supportive parenting from mothers, but not fathers, moderated the association between each form of victimization and depressive symptoms (relational: b = −0.28, p = 0.0258; physical: b = −0.03, p = 0.0275), such that the associations were non-significant when perceived supportive parenting by mothers was high.
The results underscore the link between relational victimization and depressive symptoms among early adolescents. Supportive parenting, especially from mothers, may serve as a potential buffer against the harmful effects of peer victimization.
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- Peer Victimization and Depressive Symptoms in Early Adolescents: The Protective Role of Perceived Supportive Parenting
Beth A. Kotchick
Alison A. Papadakis
Sophia L. Jobe
- Springer US
Journal of Child and Family Studies
Print ISSN: 1062-1024
Elektronisch ISSN: 1573-2843