Puberty, Depressive Symptoms, and Neighborhood Context Among African American and Caribbean Black Males

Eleanor K. Seaton, Rona Carter

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Objective: Previous empirical research on pubertal development among Black boys is limited. The present study examined the ethnic–racial composition of neighborhoods as a moderator in the relation between pubertal indicators and depressive symptoms among a nationally representative sample of African American and Caribbean Black boys. Method: The present study utilized the male sample (N = 559) from the National Survey of American Life Adolescent sample (Jackson et al., 2004). The sample consists of 395 African American and 164 Caribbean Black boys ages 13–17 years who completed measures of relative pubertal timing, voice changes, pubic hair growth, and depressive symptoms. Results: The results indicate that Black boys with early developing hair growth who lived in neighborhoods with higher percentages of Black residents had higher depressive symptoms compared to their early developing counterparts in neighborhoods with fewer Black residents. African American males with early developing hair growth had higher depressive symptoms compared to Caribbean Black males with early developing hair growth regardless of neighborhood context. Conclusion: Early pubertal timing is a risk for African American boys’ mental health regardless of neighborhood context.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalCultural Diversity and Ethnic Minority Psychology
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2021

Keywords

  • Blacks boys
  • Depressive symptoms
  • Neighborhood context
  • Pubertal development

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Sociology and Political Science

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