We examined the direct and indirect associations of perceived support (from mother, father, and friends) with self-esteem and depressive symptoms in an ethnic homogeneous sample of Mexican-origin adolescent girls living in the United States (N = 127, 14 to 19 years of age, 68% U.S.-born). Path analyses with structural equation modeling revealed that perceptions of support from significant others were associated with self-esteem and depressive symptoms, but associations differed by adolescent age. Moreover, perceptions of support from significant others were indirectly related to depressive symptoms via self-esteem. Regarding age differences, perceived support from mother and father figures was associated with self-esteem and depressive symptoms across adolescence. Support from friends was significantly associated with depressive symptoms and self-esteem in the expected direction among middle and late adolescents, but support from friends was negatively associated with self-esteem among early adolescents. In sum, perception of support from parents appears to be a salient correlate of Mexican-origin girls' adjustment across adolescence, whereas perception of friend support appears to be more salient for these girls later in adolescence.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Social Psychology
- Cultural Studies
- Clinical Psychology
- Applied Psychology