Adolescent Depression and Time Spent with Parents and Siblings


This study examines adolescent depressive symptoms and the quantity and quality of time spent by adolescents with their parents and siblings. We use measures of the quality of relationships with parents and siblings as proxy indicators for the quality of time spent with these social partners. The study emphasizes the salience of parent relationships to adolescent depression. The structural equation models suggest that time spent with parents is indirectly linked with the severity of depressive symptoms via adolescents’ perceptions of how accepting their parents are of them, and the extent to which parents avoid exerting psychological control. We discuss these findings in relation to clinical practice.

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Data are from the Child Development Supplement II of the Panel Study of Income Dynamics. The PSID is primarily sponsored by the National Science Foundation, the National Institute of Aging, and the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development and conducted by The University of Michigan. Dr. Nicholson was funded by a National Health and Medical Research Council Population Health Career Development Award (390136).

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Correspondence to Laura N. Desha.

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Desha, L.N., Nicholson, J.M. & Ziviani, J.M. Adolescent Depression and Time Spent with Parents and Siblings. Soc Indic Res 101, 233–238 (2011).

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  • Adolescence
  • Depressive symptoms
  • Time use
  • Shared time
  • Parents
  • Siblings