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Title:Relation Between Rejection and Women's Depression in the Context of Important *Relationships
Author(s):Thompson, Renee J.
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Berenbaum, Howard
Department / Program:Psychology
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Women's Studies
Abstract:Although past research has found that perceived rejection and reported rejection are positively associated with depression, no studies have examined whether re-expressing these individual-level perspectives as a dyadic-level variable would provide a richer understanding of the associations between rejection and depression. In Study 1, which had a cross-sectional design, female college students (n=183) provided self-reports of how rejected they felt by their parents (i.e., perceived rejection), and parents provided self-reports of how rejecting they were of their daughters (i.e., reported rejection). In father-daughter dyads, we found that fathers' reports of rejection moderated the relation between women's perceived rejection and depression. In mother-daughter dyads, we found that daughters' perceived rejection, but not mothers' reported rejection, was associated with depression. These findings suggest that relationship factors may be critical for understanding depression, and that the role of rejection in depression can only be understood by taking into account the nature of the relationship. In Study 2, which had a three-month prospective longitudinal design, the relation between rejection and women's depression was examined in 99 dating couples. Monthly, women provided ratings of anhedonic depression and concerns about partner rejection, and their partners provided ratings that indicated their likelihood of ending the relationship. Results of path analyses indicated that (a) a dyadic-level variable, women's rejection biases (i.e., discrepancies between women's rejection concerns and partners' reports), fit the longitudinal data better than did individual-level variables (e.g., women's rejection concerns); (b) women being overly positive about the security of the relationship was associated with lower depression concurrently, but increased depression longitudinally; and (c) findings did not replicate with worry. The results of these two studies highlight the importance of taking into account relationship issues in order to understand women's depression.
Issue Date:2007
Description:64 p.
Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 2007.
Other Identifier(s):(MiAaPQ)AAI3290401
Date Available in IDEALS:2015-09-25
Date Deposited:2007

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