Do Profiles of Adolescent Temperament Differ on Family Processes and Adult Internalizing and Externalizing Symptoms?

Jill Rabinowitz, Deborah A.G. Drabick, Jessica Packard, Maureen D. Reynolds

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


In the present study, we examined whether profiles of temperamental features in adolescence (a) predict internalizing and externalizing symptoms in early adulthood, and (b) differ in family processes (i.e., cohesion, conflict) during early adolescence. Participants were 662 youth (72% male; 76% White). Mothers reported on family cohesion and conflict during participants’ early adolescence (ages 12–14, Time 1). Youth completed measures of temperament in middle adolescence (ages 16, Time 2), and of their symptoms in middle adolescence (Time 2), late adolescence (age 19, Time 3), and early adulthood (age 22, Time 4). Latent profile analysis identified three temperamental profiles: low positive mood, low rhythmicity, and well-regulated. Individuals in the low rhythmicity profile reported higher levels of externalizing symptoms compared to the well-regulated profile. No between-profile differences were found for internalizing symptoms. Mothers of youth in the low positive mood and low rhythmicity profiles reported higher levels of family conflict than the well-regulated profile. In addition, mothers of youth in the low positive mood profile reported lower levels of family cohesion than the well-regulated profile. Research implications of the study findings are presented.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)457-467
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Child and Family Studies
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 15 2019



  • Early adulthood
  • Externalizing symptoms
  • Family processes
  • Internalizing symptoms
  • Latent profiles
  • Temperament

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Life-span and Life-course Studies

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