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J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 2003 Dec;42(12):1469-77.

Maternal depression, parent-child relationships, and resilient outcomes in adolescence.

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Department of Psychology, Emory University, Atlanta, GA 30322, USA.



To examine the relationship between maternal depression, parent-child relations, and resilient outcomes in the context of risk in a cross-sectional study of 816 15-year-olds in Australia.


Resilient outcomes were defined as the following: no current Axis I diagnosis, no history of depressive disorder diagnoses, no current internalizing problems, and no indication of current social functioning difficulties. Parent-child relationship qualities were measured using the Five-Minute Speech Sample, the Children's Report of Parent Behavior Inventory, and a child report questionnaire concerning perceived maternal warmth and hostility. The role of the father's psychiatric status in resilient outcomes was also assessed.


Results revealed that low levels of parental psychological control, high levels of maternal warmth, and low levels of maternal overinvolvement all interacted with maternal depression to predict resilient outcomes in youth.


Targeting maternal and paternal parenting qualities may be a useful method of increasing the likelihood of resilient outcomes in children of depressed mothers.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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