Parents, teachers and peers: Contributions to self-esteem and coping in adolescents
Consistent with attachment theory, the quality of relationships with significant figures plays a vital role in psychosocial development, contributing, among other aspects, to the development of coping and self-esteem. The purpose of this study is to determine the differential contribution of relational variables (namely relationship with parents, peers and teachers) in predicting coping and self-esteem in a sample of 216 adolescents, 14 to 19 aged, from both genders and coming from divorced and intact families. Parental attachment, relationships with peers and with teachers evidence different configurations in explaining self-esteem and coping variables. Self-esteem is predicted positively by quality of emotional bond and negatively by parental inhibition of exploration and individuality. Active coping is predicted positively by self-esteem and attachment to peers. However there is an indirect and positive effect of quality of emotional bond in active coping, through self-esteem and peers attachment. Relationship with peers is increased by quality of relationship with teachers. Results are discussed according to attachment theory and an ecological perspective of development.
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