Effortful Control Predicts Adolescent Antisocial-Aggressive Behaviors and Depressive Symptoms: Co-Occurrence and Moderation by Impulsivity

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23 Scopus citations

Abstract

Effortful control is associated with fewer aggressive-antisocial behaviors (AAB) and depressive symptoms (DEP), but impulsivity may moderate these relations. However, few researchers have considered the effects of AAB-DEP co-occurrence. A multi-informant, multimethod approach assessed 5- to 10-year-olds' effortful control and impulsivity and, 5-6 years later, their AAB and DEP (N = 474). Participants were non-Hispanic Caucasian (59.2%) or Hispanic (27.9%) from a Southwestern U.S. metropolitan area. Low effortful control predicted pure AAB. Low effortful control and low impulsivity predicted pure DEP and co-occurring AAB-DEP. An effortful Control × Impulsivity × Age interaction predicted pure AAB and co-occurring AAB-DEP. For older adolescents, lower effortful control predicted more symptoms only at average and high impulsivity. Results highlight multiple pathways to pure DEP versus pure AAB or co-occurring AAB-DEP.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1812-1829
Number of pages18
JournalChild Development
Volume86
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 1 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Education

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