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J Youth Adolesc. 2014 Jan;43(1):70-80. doi: 10.1007/s10964-013-9929-1. Epub 2013 Feb 24.

Peer acceptance protects global self-esteem from negative effects of low closeness to parents during adolescence and early adulthood.

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Department of Health Promotion and Development, The Faculty of Psychology, University of Bergen, Postboks 7807, 5020, Bergen, Norway,


Having a distant relationship with parents seems to increase the risk of developing a more negative global self-esteem. This article describes a longitudinal study of 1,090 Norwegian adolescents from the age of 13-23 (54 % males) that explored whether peer acceptance can act as a moderator and protect global self-esteem against the negative effects of experiencing low closeness in relationships with parents. A quadratic latent growth curve for global self-esteem with closeness to parents and peer acceptance as time-varying covariates was modeled, taking partial measurement invariance in global self-esteem into account. Peer acceptance was found to have a general protective effect on global self-esteem for all adolescents. In addition, at most ages, peer acceptance was found to have a protective-stabilizing effect on the relationship between closeness to parents and global self-esteem. This indicates that peer acceptance can be an especially valuable source of global self-esteem when closeness to parents is low.

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