Transitions in Emerging Adulthood and Stress among Young Australian Women

Bell, Sandra and Lee, Christina (2008) Transitions in Emerging Adulthood and Stress among Young Australian Women. International Journal of Behavioral Medicine, 15 4: 280-288. doi:10.1080/10705500802365482


Author Bell, Sandra
Lee, Christina
Title Transitions in Emerging Adulthood and Stress among Young Australian Women
Journal name International Journal of Behavioral Medicine   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1070-5503
1532-7558
Publication date 2008-12-01
Year available 2008
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1080/10705500802365482
Open Access Status
Volume 15
Issue 4
Start page 280
End page 288
Total pages 9
Editor Joost Dekker
Place of publication Abingdon, England
Publisher Routledge (Taylor & Francis)
Language eng
Subject C1
170102 Developmental Psychology and Ageing
920507 Women's Health
Abstract Background: Emerging adulthood involves major transitions in social roles and high levels of stress, which may affect later health. Purpose: To examine cross-sectionally and longitudinally the relationships of stress to roles in four life domainsresidential independence from family of origin, employment, relationships, and motherhoodamong young adult women. Method: 8,749 young women participating in the Australian Longitudinal Study on Women's Health provided data at Survey 1, ages 18-23, and Survey 2, ages 22-27. Results: Contrary to expectation, major life transitions were associated with low and reducing levels of stress. Cross-sectionally, living independently, not being a student, being married, and being a mother were associated with the lowest stress. Normative transitions such as moving out of home, finding work, or motherhood were associated with no change in stress, while marrying was associated with a decrease in stress. Three types of transition were associated with increases in stress: non-normative transitions to more adolescent statuses, no transition, and transitions occurring earlier than normative. Conclusion: High levels of stress at this age are associated with unusual changes, delays in changing, or changing earlier than one's peers. The normative transitions of young adulthood are not associated with high levels of stress.
Formatted abstract
Background: Emerging adulthood involves major transitions in social roles and high levels of stress, which may affect later health.

Purpose: To examine cross-sectionally and longitudinally the relationships of stress to roles in four life domains — residential independence from family of origin, employment, relationships, and motherhood — among young adult women.

Method: 8,749 young women participating in the Australian Longitudinal Study on Women’s Health provided data at Survey 1, ages 18–23, and Survey 2, ages 22–27.

Results: Contrary to expectation, major life transitions were associated with low and reducing levels of stress. Cross-sectionally, living independently, not being a student, being married, and being a mother were associated with the lowest stress. Normative transitions such as moving out of home, finding work, or motherhood were associated with no change in stress, while marrying was associated with a decrease in stress. Three types of transition were associated with increases in stress: non-normative transitions to more “adolescent” statuses, no transition, and transitions occurring earlier than normative.

Conclusion: High levels of stress at this age are associated with unusual changes, delays in changing, or changing earlier than one’s peers. The normative transitions of young adulthood are not associated with high levels of stress.
Keyword stress
women
life transitions
longitudinal
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ
Additional Notes Alternate Edition ISSN: 1532-7558.

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: 2009 Higher Education Research Data Collection
School of Psychology Publications
 
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 8 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
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Created: Tue, 07 Apr 2009, 23:42:52 EST by Lucy O'Brien on behalf of School of Psychology