Co-occurrence of conduct problems and depressive symptoms in early adolescent boys: III. Prediction to young-adult adjustment
The prediction of young-adult adjustment from early adolescent conduct problems and depressive symptoms was examined for an at-risk sample of approximately 200 males. Conduct problems and depressive symptoms were expected to show stability to young adulthood. It was predicted that early adolescent conduct problems would be associated with a broad range of adjustment problems in young adulthood due to cumulative adjustment failures. Early adolescent depressive symptoms were expected particularly to predict poor relationships with parents and peers. Additive and interactive effects of the two predictors were examined. Conduct problems and depressive symptoms showed significant stability to young adulthood. Conduct problems were associated with a broad range of adjustment problems including continuing problems in peer associations, substance use, self-esteem, relationships with parents, and new problems in noncompletion of education, unemployment, driver's license suspensions, and causing pregnancies. Depressive symptoms predicted particularly to problems in social relationships. Higher levels of both conduct problems and depressive symptoms in early adolescence did not predict to increased difficulties for any one outcome over either problem alone, either due to main or interaction effects. Such co-occurrence, however, did result in problem outcomes in multiple areas, thus, the poorest adjustment overall.
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