Support and conflict in ethnically diverse young adults relationships with parents and friends

Kristin L. Moilanen, Marcela Raffaelli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We examined support and conflict with parents and close friends in a sample of ethnically diverse young adults (European-, Asian-, Cuban-, Latin-, and Mexican Americans). College students (N = 495) completed six subscales from the Network of Relationships Inventory (NRI; Furman & Buhrmester, 1985). Friends were rated higher than parents on global support by Asian- and European Americans, but not by the three Latino groups. Regardless of ethnic group, friends and parents provided different types of support, and conflict with parents was more frequent than conflict with friends. No differences due to age, gender, or generation of immigration emerged for European-, Cuban-, or Asian Americans; differences emerged attributable to gender among Mexican Americans (support and conflict), and generation of immigration among Latin Americans (support). Findings reveal ethnic group similarities in how college students social relationships are structured, but also highlight unique within-group experiences.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)46-52
Number of pages7
JournalInternational Journal of Behavioral Development
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2010


  • Ethnicity
  • Immigration
  • Parent-child relationships
  • Peer relationships
  • Social support

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Developmental Neuroscience
  • Life-span and Life-course Studies


Dive into the research topics of 'Support and conflict in ethnically diverse young adults relationships with parents and friends'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this