Developmental Psychopathology in a Racial/Ethnic Minority Group: Are Cultural Risks Relevant?

Chiaying Wei, Ruth E. Eisenberg, María A. Ramos-Olazagasti, Melanie Wall, Chen Chen, Héctor R. Bird, Glorisa Canino, Cristiane S. Duarte

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Objective The current study examined (a) the mediating role of parenting behaviors in the relationship between parental risks and youth antisocial behaviors (YASB), and (b) the role of youth cultural stress in a racial/ethnic minority group (i.e., Puerto Rican [PR] youth). Method This longitudinal study consisted of 3 annual interviews of PR youth (N = 1,150; aged 10−14 years at wave 1) and their caretakers from the South Bronx (SB) in New York City and from San Juan, Puerto Rico. Parents reported on parental risks, parenting behaviors, and YASB. Youth also self-reported on YASB and youth cultural stress. A lagged structural equation model examined the relationship between these variables across 3 yearly waves, with youth cultural stress as a moderator of the association between effective parenting behaviors and YASB. Results Findings supported the positive influence of effective parenting on YASB, independently of past parental risks and past YASB: higher effective parenting significantly predicted lower YASB at the following wave. Parenting also accounted for (mediated) the association between the composite of parental risks and YASB. Youth cultural stress at wave 1 was cross-sectionally associated with higher YASB and moderated the prospective associations between effective parenting and YASB, such that for youth who perceived higher cultural stress, the positive effect of effective parenting on YASB was weakened compared to those with lower/average cultural stress. Conclusion Among PR families, both parental and cultural risk factors influence YASB. Such findings should be considered when treating racial/ethnic minority youth for whom cultural factors may be a relevant influence on determining behaviors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1081-1088.e1
JournalJournal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 2017


  • Puerto Rican
  • antisocial behaviors
  • cultural stress
  • parenting
  • youth

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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