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The importance of perceived care and connectedness with friends and parents for adolescent social anxiety
Örebro University, School of Law, Psychology and Social Work.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-3504-9037
Örebro University, School of Law, Psychology and Social Work.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-0185-8805
2015 (English)In: Journal of personality, ISSN 0022-3506, E-ISSN 1467-6494, Vol. 83, no 3, p. 346-360Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Nonclinical social anxiety in adolescence can be highly problematic, as it likely affects current and especially new social interactions. Relationships with significant others, such as close friends, mothers, and fathers, could aid socially anxious adolescents' participation in social situations, thereby helping reduce feelings of social anxiety. We examined whether making friends as well as high friendship quality help reduce social anxiety over time, and whether friends', mothers', and fathers' care interact in reducing social anxiety. Using longitudinal data from 2,194 participants in a social network (48% girls; Mage  = 13.58) followed for 3 years, we estimated friendship selection and influence processes via a continuous time-modeling approach using SIENA. We controlled for the effects of depressive symptoms, self-esteem, gender, age, and family structure. Our findings suggest that perceived care by friends mediated the effect of making friends on social anxiety. Perceptions of mother and father, as well as friend care and connectedness, respectively, did not interact in decreasing social anxiety. Nonetheless, care and connectedness with mothers, fathers, and friends jointly predicted decreases in social anxiety. Caring relationships with friends and parents each play a role in mutually protecting early adolescents against increasing in social anxiety over time.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015. Vol. 83, no 3, p. 346-360
Keywords [en]
social anxiety
National Category
Psychology
Research subject
Psychology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:oru:diva-43428DOI: 10.1111/jopy.12108ISI: 000354125400010PubMedID: 24957362Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-84929023874OAI: oai:DiVA.org:oru-43428DiVA, id: diva2:793541
Available from: 2015-03-07 Created: 2015-03-07 Last updated: 2017-12-04Bibliographically approved

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Van Zalk, NejraVan Zalk, Maarten

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