U.S. Latino parents can face cultural stressors in the form of acculturative stress, perceived discrimination, and a negative context of reception. It stands to reason that these cultural stressors may negatively impact Latino youth's emotional well-being and health risk behaviors by increasing parents' depressive symptoms and compromising the overall functioning of the family. To test this possibility, we analyzed data from a six-wave longitudinal study with 302 recently immigrated (<5 years in the United States) Latino parents (74% mothers, Mage = 41.09 years) and their adolescent children (47% female, Mage = 14.51 years). Results of a cross-lagged analysis indicated that parent cultural stress predicted greater parent depressive symptoms (and not vice versa). Both parent cultural stress and depressive symptoms, in turn, predicted lower parent-reported family functioning, which mediated the links from parent cultural stress and depressive symptoms to youth alcohol and cigarette use. Parent cultural stress also predicted lower youth-reported family functioning, which mediated the link from parent cultural stress to youth self-esteem. Finally, mediation analyses indicated that parent cultural stress predicted youth alcohol use by a way of parent depressive symptoms and parent-reported family functioning. Our findings point to parent depressive symptoms and family functioning as key mediators in the links from parent cultural stress to youth emotional well-being and health risk behaviors. We discuss implications for research and preventive interventions.
Keywords: Cultural Stress; Emotional Well-Being; Family Stress; Health Risk Behaviors; Latino Families; bienestar emocional; comportamientos de riesgo para la salud; estrés cultural; estrés familiar; familias latinas; 健康风险行为; 家庭压力; 情感健康; 拉丁裔家庭; 文化压力.
© 2016 Family Process Institute.