Abstract

This research examines the discrepancy between attitudinal and behavioral familism and its relation to depressive symptoms. The overarching hypothesis was that discrepancy between family values and the actual experiences of those values influences psychological health. Previous research has primarily focused on self-report measures of familial attitudes, and not whether these values are actually experienced by the individual. To address this gap in the literature, this study developed a new behavioral familism scale. A total of 431 Latinos and non-Latino Whites from a large university in Florida participated in this study. Overall, the new behavioral familism scale demonstrated good psychometric properties. Test-retest reliability was established with a sample of 109 participants who completed the measures twice, two weeks apart. Test-retest reliability was high (r = .85) and excellent (ICC = .92) for the total composite score. The internal consistency was examined with a sample of 323 participants. Results showed good internal consistency for the total composite score (Cronbach Alpha = .85). The convergent validity was evaluated with another measure of familism, as well as measures of perceived social support and family environment. Correlation analyses indicated significant positive relationships with all related measures in the expected direction. The divergent validity was evaluated with measures of social desirability and acculturation. Correlation analyses indicated non-significant and low relationships with both measures as expected. Polynomial regression and response surface analyses demonstrated that discrepancy between attitudinal and behavioral familism scores predicted symptoms of depression in a sample of 118 Latinos. Specifically, this study found that depressive symptoms increased as the discrepancy between the total composite scores of attitudinal and behavioral familism increased in either direction. Furthermore, the discrepancy in the family interconnectedness subscale indicated that symptoms of depression increased when attitudinal family interconnectedness was higher than behavioral family interconnectedness, but not when the relationship was reversed. Discrepancies between attitudinal and behavioral familism total composite scores and subscales did not predict symptoms of anxiety. These findings highlight the importance of understanding the role that culturally specific variables, such as familism, play in the psychological health of Latinos.

Graduation Date

2016

Semester

Fall

Advisor

Cassisi, Jeffrey

Degree

Master of Science (M.S.)

College

College of Sciences

Department

Psychology

Degree Program

Psychology Clinical

Format

application/pdf

Identifier

CFE0006484

URL

http://purl.fcla.edu/fcla/etd/CFE0006484

Language

English

Release Date

December 2016

Length of Campus-only Access

None

Access Status

Masters Thesis (Open Access)

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