Gender differences in symptoms of depression among adolescents

J Health Soc Behav. 1992 Jun;33(2):77-96.


In this paper, we examine sources of gender differences in depressive symptoms among adolescents. Using data collected from a self-administered survey of 306 high school students, we examine differences in the impact of life events, psychosocial resources, and parent-child relationships on levels of psychological distress. Our results confirm a substantial gender difference in level of psychological distress. Moreover, analyses indicate that this gender difference may be due largely to higher levels of self-esteem among males and a tendency for adolescents to perceive their fathers to be overprotective. There is, however, also evidence that other psychosocial resources and parent-child relationships are implicated in this gender difference. We also present analyses to support our contention that parent-child relationships have important effects on the development of psychosocial resources of adolescents that, in turn, influence levels of depressive symptoms.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adaptation, Psychological
  • Adolescent
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Depression / epidemiology
  • Depression / psychology*
  • Female
  • Gender Identity*
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Male
  • Ontario / epidemiology
  • Parent-Child Relations
  • Risk Factors