Skip to main content


Ge, Xiaojia; Lorenz, Frederick O.; Conger, Rand D.; Elder, Glen H., Jr.; & Simons, Ronald L. (1994). Trajectories of Stressful Life Events and Depressive Symptoms during Adolescence. Developmental Psychology, 30(4), 467-483.


This 4-yr longitudinal study of 191 girls and 185 boys living in intact families in the rural Midwest examines the trajectories of life events and depressive symptoms in adolescence. The trajectories of depressive symptoms differ between boys and girls. Compared with boys, girls experienced a greater number of depressive symptoms after age 13. Changes in uncontrollable events are associated with the increases in girls' but not boys' depressive symptoms. Latent growth curve analyses show that, over 4 yrs, (1) depressive symptoms for girls changed according to a curvilinear pattern that is associated with changes in stressful events; (2) the level of depressive symptoms is related to the level of life events for both boys and girls; and (3) change in depressive symptoms is significantly related to change in stressful events only for girls. Girls living with less supportive mothers are more vulnerable to negative life changes.


Reference Type

Journal Article

Year Published


Journal Title

Developmental Psychology


Ge, Xiaojia
Lorenz, Frederick O.
Conger, Rand D.
Elder, Glen H., Jr.
Simons, Ronald L.