Social support as a moderator between dating violence victimization and depression/anxiety among African American and Caucasian adolescents

Melissa K. Holt, Dorothy L. Espelage

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Victimization in dating relationships was examined among 681 African American and Caucasian adolescents. Specifically, perceived social support was evaluated as a moderator between (a) physical dating violence victimization and anxiety/depression and (b) emotional abuse in dating relationships and anxiety/ depression. Youth completed self-report measures of victimization in dating relationships, psychological functioning, and perceived familial and peer social support. Results indicated that 37% reported physical dating violence and 62% reported emotional abuse in dating relationships. Greater physical and emotional dating victimization was associated with more anxiety/depression. Moreover, social support moderated the association between victimization and psychological well-being, particularly for African American males. Findings highlight the powerful influence of perceived social support among adolescent targets of physical violence and emotional abuse in dating relationships.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)309-328
Number of pages20
JournalSchool Psychology Review
Volume34
Issue number3
StatePublished - Oct 20 2005

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology

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