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Contributions of attachment to self-concept and internalizing and externalizing problems among Japanese adolescents
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Clinical Sciences, Psychiatry.
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Clinical Sciences, Child and Adolescent Psychiatry.
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Clinical Sciences, Psychiatry.
2010 (English)In: Journal of Child and Family Studies, ISSN 1062-1024, E-ISSN 1573-2843, Vol. 19, no 3, 334-342 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

We examined the associations and likely pathways underlying the relationships between peer attachment style, self-concept, and Internalizing/Externalizing Problems among high school students in Japan. A total of 228 senior high school students (186 boys and 82 girls; mean age = 16.4) completed the Attachment Questionnaire for Children, Self-Description Questionnaire II-Short, and Youth Self-Report. The main results were that securely attached adolescents reported fewer mental health problems and more positive self-concept than those who reported insecure attachment. Some patterns of associations among variables appeared to be different across gender. The Structural Equation Modeling provided a support for the mediating role of self-concept in influencing the relationships between Attachment and Internalizing Problems, but not Externalizing Problems. The paths for the model were significant across gender. The results promote understanding of psychological processes that influence the relationships between attachment and psychological well-being among high school adolescents in Japan.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2010. Vol. 19, no 3, 334-342 p.
Keyword [en]
attachment, self-concept, internalizing and externalizing problems, adolescence
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-30430DOI: 10.1007/s10826-009-9303-9ISI: 000277202100010OAI: diva2:282971
Available from: 2009-12-22 Created: 2009-12-22 Last updated: 2011-03-15Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Japanese adolescents' self-concept and well-being in comparison with other countries
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Japanese adolescents' self-concept and well-being in comparison with other countries
2009 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Background: In a rapidly changing and increasingly interconnected world, the issue of mental health and well-being among adolescents is one of the important research topics. However, there have been few studies amongst Japanese adolescents that have been published in international journals.

Objectives: (I) to make a comparison in selfconcept between healthy adolescents in Japan and Sweden, (II) to address the influence of perceived parental rearing on self-concept and mental health problems among Japanese adolescents, (III) to investigate contributions of attachment and self-concept to mental health problems reported by Japanese adolescents, (IV) to address a comparison of mental health problems and self reported competence in adolescents from Greece, Japan, Russia, and Sweden.

Methods: The following self-report instruments were used: Self- Description Questionnaire II (Marsh, 1992), Actual-Ideal Questionnaire (Nishikawa, 2003), Self-Description Questionnaire IIShort (Marsh, Ellis, Parada, Richards, & Heubeck, 2005), Youth Self- Report (Achenbach, 1991), Attachment Questionnaire- for Children (Sharpe et al., 1998), and Egna Minnen Beträffande Uppfostran (my memories of child upbringing) for Children (Muris, Meesters, & van Brakel, 2003). The participants for Paper I were adolescents aged 14 and 15 from Japan (n=144) and Sweden (n=96). One hundred ninety three Japanese students between the ages of 15-19 participated in Paper II and 228 students for Paper III. The participants for Paper IV were 812 healthy adolescents between 15 and 17 years of age from Greece (n=152), Japan (n=219), Russia (n=159), and Sweden (n=282).

 Results: Paper I showed that Japanese students reported less positive self-concept compared to the Swedish counterparts. The results were discussed in terms of different response style and modesty in Japanese culture. Paper II showed that dysfunctional parental rearing and insecure peer attachment were associated with negative self-concept and more mental health problems. A unique influence on mental health problems from parent-adolescent relationships depending on the gender of parents and adolescents was also found. Paper III showed a mediating role of self-concept in influencing the relationships between attachment style and Internalizing Problems. Paper IV indicated rather small differences across countries in the syndrome scales. Japanese and Swedish adolescents tended to score lower than Russian and Greek counterparts. Some cultural specific syndromes were found.

Conclusion: These results reported in this thesis present a general view of Japanese adolescents’ self-concept and the influence of interpersonal relationships in mental health problems assessed by Western self-report instruments. When being compared with other countries, cultural background and response style must be taken into account.

72 p.
Umeå University medical dissertations, ISSN 0346-6612 ; 1320
adolescence, self-concept, mental health, attachment style, perceived parental rearing, cross-cultural
National Category
Psychiatry Psychology
Research subject
Psychology; Child and Youth Psychiatry
urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-30324 (URN)978-91-7264-922-4 (ISBN)
Public defence
2010-01-15, Psykiatriska klinikens föreläsningas salA, by23, 0-planet, NUS, Umeå University, 09:00 (English)
Available from: 2009-12-22 Created: 2009-12-16 Last updated: 2009-12-22Bibliographically approved

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Nishikawa, SaoriHägglöf, BrunoSundbom, Elisabet
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