ERIC Number: EJ939289
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Oct
Abstractor: As Provided
The Role of Peer Stress and Pubertal Timing on Symptoms of Psychopathology during Early Adolescence
Sontag, Lisa M.; Graber, Julia A.; Clemans, Katherine H.
Journal of Youth and Adolescence, v40 n10 p1371-1382 Oct 2011
Stress is known to amplify the link between pubertal timing and psychopathology. However, few studies have examined the role of peer stress as a context for this link. The present study examined the interaction between perceived pubertal timing and peer stress on symptoms of psychopathology in early adolescence. The sample consisted of 264 students (63% female; M age = 12.40, SD = 1.00; 55% Caucasian, 23% African American, 7% Latino, 11% biracial and 4% other). Higher peer stress was associated with symptoms of anxiety/depression; this effect did not vary by timing or gender. However, early-maturing girls with high peer stress demonstrated higher rates of relational and overt aggression compared to other girls. Findings also suggested that late-maturing boys with high stress are at risk for aggression problems; however, due to the small number of boys, analyses were exploratory. Overall, results suggest that developmentally salient contexts as indicated by stressful peer experiences may pose unique threats to early maturing girls and possibly late-maturing boys.
Descriptors: Maturity (Individuals), Early Adolescents, Psychopathology, Puberty, Depression (Psychology), Peer Groups, Stress Variables, Symptoms (Individual Disorders), Anxiety, Role, Correlation, Aggression, At Risk Persons
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A