Contagious depression: Negative attachment cognitions as a moderator of the temporal association between parental depression and child depression

John R.Z. Abela, Suzanne Zinck, Shelley Kryger, Irene Zilber, Benjamin L. Hankin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

This study examined whether negative attachment cognitions moderate the association between the onset of depressive symptoms in children and their parents using a high-risk sample (parents with a history of major depressive episodes and their children) and a multiwave longitudinal design. During the initial assessment, 140 children (ages 6-14) completed a measure assessing parent-child attachment cognitions. Parents and children also completed measures assessing current level of depressive symptoms. Following the initial assessment, children and parents were contacted every 6 weeks for the next year to complete measures assessing depressive symptoms. The results of hierarchical linear modeling analyses indicated that children who exhibited high levels of negative attachment cognitions reported greater elevations in depressive symptoms following elevations in their parent's level of depressive symptoms than children who exhibited low levels.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)16-26
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology
Volume38
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2009
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology

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