Developmental patterns in coping and later mental health : a longitudinal study from age 15 to 18 and 24 years of age

by Mona Bekkhus

Institution: University of Oslo
Year: 1000
Keywords: VDP::260
Record ID: 1276036
Full text PDF: https://www.duo.uio.no/handle/10852/18248


Background: The transition from adolescence to adulthood is a period with major and minor stressors while coping strategies have not yet been fully established. The current study will attempt to clarify the nature of the relationships between coping strategies in early adolescence and young adulthood using a longitudinal framework. Method: This study of 95 young adults is the fifth follow up of a cohort study starting in 1985 when these adults were 4 years of age. Based on a longitudinal design, data was collected by using self-administered questionnaires sent out at 15, 18 and now aged 24 years. The sample size for participating in all 3 age points was n=56. Age and gender differences in coping across 3 age points were analysed. Further the long-term effect of active or avoidant coping on psychological distress was assessed by hierarchical regression analyses. Results: Active coping strategies were continuously more frequently used among young people than avoidant coping strategies. The results did not find evidence for stable patterns in neither active nor avoidant coping over a nine-year period. It turned out that there was a shift in stability of coping patterns at age 18. Psychological distress among the 24 year olds was predicted by concurrent avoidant strategies. None of the coping patterns experienced at 15 and 18 years were significantly associated with psychopathology at 24 year.