This study's purpose was to evaluate whether two aspects of positive peer relations—having a friend and being well-liked—mitigate prospective transactions between depressive symptoms and peer victimization. Participants were early adolescents in fifth and sixth grades (N = 483; 50% girls; Mage in 5th grade spring = 11.10 years; SD = 0.40) and late adolescents in ninth and tenth grades (N = 444; 52% girls; Mage in 9th grade spring = 14.70 years; SD = 0.62). Data were collected in the spring annually. Depressive symptoms were assessed via parent-, teacher-, and self-reports (late adolescence only) and peer victimization by self-, peer-, and teacher-reports. Mutual friendship nominations and peer acceptance ratings indexed positive peer relations. Results showed that positive peer relations are protective: Depressive symptoms contributed to peer victimization for early and late adolescents without a friend; moreover, late adolescents high on acceptance were at decreased risk for peer victimization.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Developmental and Educational Psychology