Master's Theses



Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Depression is a serious mental illness that affects millions of people. Depression can cause severe life impairment and is associated with numerous life threatening risk factors. Though treatment of depression is important, prevention is ideal. Therefore, it is important to understand associated risk and protective factors of depression. Several factors may precede the development of depression in young adulthood. This study sought to better understand the role of temperament, parent-child attachment relationships, and child reported co-parenting quality on the development of depressive symptoms in young adults between the ages of 18 and 22. Previous studies have suggested that some temperament traits including negative affect, positive affect, and effortful control may be related to depression. Additionally, research has also suggested that parent child attachment is associated and predictive of depression as well. This study was also interested in how co-parenting and depression are related. Co-parenting is the relationship quality of how two individuals work together to raise a child, which may be supportive or undermining. Past research has shown conflicting results as to whether co-parenting quality may influence the development of depressive symptoms (e.g., Feinberg et al., 2007; Forehand & Jones, 2003). However, this study expected that conflict co-parenting and unsupportive co-parenting would be related to depressive symptoms. Hierarchical multiple regression was used to test the hypothesis that temperament, attachment, and co-parenting are each predictive of depression. Results indicated that though temperament, attachment, and co-parenting are all separately correlated and predictive of depression, attachment and co-parenting fail to account for additional significant variance in depression when accounting for temperament.


Dr. Carol Patrick

Date of Award

Summer 2013

Document Type



© 2013 Whitney Geising


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Psychology Commons