Boys have a penis. Girls have a vagina. That pure wisdom is a quote from the movie Kindergarten Cop. The little boy summarized the differences between boys and girls quite well but unfortunately nothing in life remains just that simple. Recently the more complex differences between boys and girls have been the focus of research regarding depression. Studies have indicated that while the childhood prevalence of depression in boys and girls is relatively similar, once children reach adolescence girls are nearly twice as likely as boys to exhibit depressive symptoms. This prevalence rate mirrors what is found in adults with depression. What factors are contributing to this difference?
[...] Eventually this is turned inward and the individual takes the insecure attachment and makes it into an internal representation of him or herself (Cicchetti & Toth, 1998). In doing this, they are allowing/using their insecure attachment to shape how they perceive others and how they believe that others perceive them. This is a self-defeating practice because it usually ends with a feeling a failure surrounding peer relationships and this sense of failure contributes to the depressotypic organization associated with those who develop depressive disorders later in life (Cicchetti & Toth, 1998). [...]
[...] Conclusion This piece has barely scratched the surface of the potential reasons that can account for the gender difference in adolescent depression but the ABC Model of Depression is leading in this particular field of research due to its thorough consideration of several different aspects of development that could create the vulnerability to depression in adolescent girls more so than adolescent boys. References Alloy, L. B., Abramson, L. Y., Hogan, M. E., Whitehouse, W. G., Rose, D. T., & Robinson, M. [...]
[...] The ABC Model of Depression The ABC Model is a vulnerability-stress model that specifically addresses the emergence of the adolescent gender difference in depression. It states that cognitive, affective, and biological vulnerabilities are all exacerbated in the face of the stress of adolescence and thus the interactions between these vulnerabilities and the stressors are the reason for the vulnerability that can lead to eventual depression (Abramson et al., 2008). The Cognitive Piece The cognitive-vulnerability component of the ABC Model is based on two concepts. [...]
[...] College students who were believed to operate under a ruminative style of thinking before the major earthquake that hit San Francisco in 1989 were determined to have higher levels of depression even seven weeks after the earthquake and even taking into consideration their depressive levels beforehand (Hyde, 2008). Accompanying the concept of ruminative thinking is what researchers refer to as OBC Theory. This theory is built around the notion that individuals, adolescent girls in particular, form negative thoughts about their own bodies. [...]
[...] In infants with depressed caregivers it has been noted that the unstable environment, they often provide along with the excessive new stimuli that would go along with changing environments results in more right brain activity than in infants with healthy caregivers indicating perhaps the beginnings of vulnerabilities to depression later in life. Infants of healthy caregivers that spend their time in stable and consistent environments, on the other hand, develop left brain dominance which aids in inhibiting the negative arousal associated with the right brain and thereby begin to develop a protective factor at a very young age (Cicchetti & Lynch, 1998). [...]
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